Legislative Advocacy Updates

The Washington State Legislative Session is scheduled to run January 13 to March 12, 2020. See what WCSAP is monitoring below. We will update this page as we can!

WCSAP Supports Safer Immigrant Communities

We aim to create a safer state for immigrants and refugees and encourage our communities to continue to build onto existing protections and to center immigrant communities in creating solutions for access and safety. If immigrant communities are safer, we are all safer.

SB 6522 (Courts Open to All Act) WCSAP members have reported consistent arrests of survivors in their communities by immigration officials in civil courts. This bill seeks to prohibit warrantless civil arrests. Prohibiting these civil arrests at courthouses is necessary for immigrant survivors to be able to get help for the abuse they are experiencing. We support this bill and it's companion bill in the House 2567. We are monitoring and will testify when the bill goes to Senate Law & Justice.

WCSAP released a statement in opposition to Senate Bill 6030 (Fortunato). This bill prohibits sanctuary policies and mandates cooperation with federal immigration authorities. We will submit testimony once it heads to Law & Justice Committee. It has a companion bill, HB 2226 (Walsh).

On Jan. 29, Valeriana testified in support SB 6442 (Saldaña) concerning private detention facilities in the Senate Committee on Human Services, Reentry & Rehabilitation.

WCSAP Supports Trans & Nonbinary Youth

Transgender young people in the United States face disproportionate levels of sexual violence victimization, harassment, and disenfranchisement. Gender identity of young people must be affirmed in activities, restrooms, schools, and society to achieve inclusion and mitigate bullying, sexual violence, and risk of suicide.

HB 2201 (Klippert) this bill describes "male students" as those whose sex assigned at birth was male as a way to exclude transgender girls from participating in girls sports. We will oppose when it is heard in Education committee.

WCSAP Supports Primary Prevention

We support efforts to openly and directly address issues of human sexuality with young people. Comprehensive sexual health education is vital to stem the tide of sexual violence, in all its forms. This includes, the promotion of healthy relationships based on mutual respect, coercion, and intimidation; skills for how to identify and respond to attitudes and behaviors that contribute to sexual violence; and emphasize the importance of affirmative consent, all of which must be inclusive of the spectrum of disability, gender, and sexual orientation.

Darin attended the hearing on HB 2184 (Stonier) Comprehensive Sex Education. We strongly support this bill.

  • Update: The companion bill SB 5395 (Wilson) passed the full Senate on Jan. 22!

WCSAP Supports Best Practices

Sexual assault services and systems responses should be trauma-informed and survivor-centered. Survivors need options and to exercise choices that they feel are best for healing and justice as they define it. Services and systems must take into account the impact trauma has on individuals.

Darin advocated with Senator Dhingra's office to be included on the working group for SB 6162 to consult on best practices concerning victims of nonfatal strangulation.

On January 20, Michelle testified in support of SB 6158 (Dhingra). This is a bill concerning model sexual assault protocols for hospitals and clinics.

On January 21, Darin testified in support of HB 2327 (Pollet) which addresses sexual misconduct at postsecondary educational institutions.

SB 5282 (Liias) Requires informed consent for pelvic exams on anesthetized patients. We support this bill.

  • Update: this bill has passed out of the Senate and is in committee in the House. We will testify once in Health Care & Wellness.

On January 23, Darin testified in support of SB 5744 (Dhingra), concerning sexually exploited children. We submitted written support to its companion bill HB 1775 (Orwall).

We are monitoring SB 6436 (Rolfes) Relating to the conditional release of sexually violent predators to less restrictive alternatives.

We are monitoring HB 2704 (Caldier) Establishing a competitive grant program for community sexual assault programs to provide counseling services in schools. We have some concerns related to confidentiality and exclusion of Marginalized and Tribal grantees as potential grant recipients.

WCSAP Supports Economic Justice

Poverty is not only a risk factor for sexual harassment and sexual assault, it is also often the result of sexual harassment and sexual assault. Most victims suffer sexual abuse and harassment longer if they cannot feed and shelter themselves or their children. They have to make impossible choices between safety and basic needs.

SB 5164 (Saldaña) and HB 1971 providing public assistance to certain victims of human trafficking. We support this bill.

HB 1527 (Entenmen) Working families' tax credit. We support this bill. There is a companion bill SB 5810 (Nguyen).

We are monitoring HB 2441 (Entenman) which improves access to TANF. This bill institutes a barrier review process prior to terminating assistance.