Sen. Holly J. Mitchell formally introduced a new package of bills on Tuesday, April 23, 2019 aimed at promoting economic and health equity to Californians who need it most.
Understanding that economic health can depend on physical and mental health, and that the same is true in reverse, Sen. Mitchell’s 2019 package includes eight bills to support #EconomicJustice and three bills to promote #HealthJustice.
The package includes measures that seek to remove economic shackles that currently make re-integration into their communities impossible for too many people who have already paid their debt to society.
Highlighted at a press conference today was Senate Bill 144, which would end the unfair imposition of administrative fees on people who become involved in the criminal justice system, a practice that inflicts debt on them and their families long after they have served their time.
Below, in bill order, are the bills comprising Sen. Mitchell’s 2019 #EconomicJustice and #HealthJustice package:
SB 144 Families Over Fees: This reform bill would reduce recidivism and eliminate barriers to success by eliminating criminal administrative fees Status: Approved today by the Senate Public Safety Committee. SB 144 will next be heard by the Senate Appropriations Committee; no date has been set.
SB 188 The CROWN Act: Creating a Respectful and Open Workplace for Natural hair would fight school and job discrimination based on hair styles.
Status: Approved by the Senate April 22, 2019. Now awaiting review by the Assembly.
SB 321 Child Care: This bill would remove unnecessary barriers to participation in CalWORKs childcare, including expanding eligibility from 6 to 12 months and granting full time eligibility. Status: To be heard by the Senate Education Committee on April 24.
SB 329 Housing Vouchers: This would improve housing security for voucher holders. Status: To be heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee on April 23.
SB 639 Medical Credit Cards: Curtails predatory lending practices in doctor’s offices by reforming various aspects of medical credit cards including deferred interest. Status: Approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee on April 9. Awaiting review by the Senate Appropriations Committee on April 29.
SB 555 Jail Fees: the “Fair Access and Connection to Support” (FACTS) Act reduces the cost of phone calls and commissary items purchased by incarcerated people in county jails and their families and ensures that the inmate welfare fund is used solely for the benefit of inmates. Status: Placed on suspense by Senate Appropriations Committee.
SB 716 Court Schools: This bill is “Building the Juvenile Hall to Career Pipeline” by requiring court schools to establish post-secondary education and/or vocational training programming for all youth in custody who have graduated or tested out of high school. Status: Set for hearing in Senate Education Committee April 24.
SB 740 Life Insurance: The “Unclaimed Life Insurance and Annuities Act” codifies the settlement agreement for over 30 life insurance companies by mandating use of the social security death master file for locating life insurance beneficiaries and annuitants. Status: Set for hearing in Senate Insurance Committee on April 24
SB 464 Maternal Wellness: The “Dignity in Pregnancy and Childbirth Act” intends to address the inequities of maternal care for black mothers and infants by requiring implicit bias training for perinatal providers involved in services at hospitals and birth centers; requires DPH to track and publish data on maternal mortality rates and pregnancy related conditions. Status: Approved by Senate Health Committee on April 11. Awaiting review by the Senate Appropriations Committee on April 29.
SB 361 Health Homes Program: Aligns California’s 2014 law with the realities of a 2018/19 rollout of the law, which includes a more stable state budget and the current crisis of homelessness and mental health. Status: Approved by Senate Health Committee on April 4. Awaiting review by the Senate Appropriations Committee on April 29.
SB 647 Toxic Jewelry: “The California Safe Jewelry Act” improves consumer protection by conforming California law to current national and international standards for lead and cadmium in jewelry. Status: Set for hearing in Senate Environmental Quality Committee on April 24