13. January 2023 · Comments Off on Faith Action Network Update 01/13/2023 · Categories: Announcements

Ready to raise your voice?

Register now for the Eastern WA Legislative Conference, happening next weekend.

Register soon for Interfaith Advocacy Day in Olympia, Thursday, February 9, 9am-3pm. Please register by January 29 at this link so we can arrange legislative meetings for you.

You can view the recordings of our 2023 legislative preview and Advocacy 101 Zoom trainings at our YouTube channel. The slide deck from Advocacy 101 can be viewed at this link.

We will be updating our legislative agenda with bill numbers as legislation continues to be introduced.

First Week of Session

The 105-day 2023 legislative session began Monday with an opening day ceremony in person. The Washington State Democrats control both chambers, in the Senate 28-20 and in the House 58-40. Lawmakers will focus this session on creating a two-year state budget, as well as bills related to housing, behavioral health, workforce development, gun violence prevention, and protecting bodily autonomy. This will be a hybrid session; legislators will serve in person at the Capitol, but testimony can be given in person or virtually. Hearings will continue to be broadcast or live-streamed by TVW, the state’s government affairs channel.

This past Tuesday, Gov. Jay Inslee delivered his State of the State address. He urged lawmakers to put a $4 billion bond measure on the ballot this year that, if approved by voters, would accelerate efforts to build thousands of new homes and reduce the number of homeless individuals and families across the state. The money would be used to create emergency housing and more than 20,000 new housing units by 2030, while providing closing costs and down payments to some low-income first-time home buyers.

Also on Tuesday, the Community Safety, Justice, & Reentry Committee heard HB 1024 Real Labor Real Wages Act (Rep. Simmons), which would require that incarcerated workers in Washington prisons be paid minimum wage. Currently, people incarcerated by the Washington Department of Corrections are generally paid less than $1 per hour for their work. This bill would help provide financial stability for successful re-entry.

The committee also heard HB 1087 Solitary Confinement Reform (Rep. Peterson), which would address conditions in state prisons and private detention centers like the Northwest Detention Center, an immigration prison located in Tacoma. Because a virtual testimony option was available, several people who are currently or formerly incarcerated or detained were able to give powerful testimony remotely on the impacts of solitary confinement on their lives. Solitary confinement is considered a form of torture by the United Nations. This inhumane treatment disproportionately impacts people of color and has been shown to have devastating and lasting psychological effects. This is why FAN joins our Multifaith Coalition for Restorative Justice partners in advocating for reform.

The Senate State Elections and Government Committee heard
SB 5082 Repeal Advisory Votes (Sen. Kuderer). Washington is the only state that has advisory votes, which are commonly referred to as Tim Eyman’s biased push polls, and are costly, misleading, and nonbinding, and discourage voting. Bob Beekman, co-lead of FAN’s Economic Justice Working Group (EJWG), testified in support of abolishing advisory votes.  Steve Clagett, also co-leader of EJWG, submitted testimony in support of additional language in the bill that would give voters more accurate information about state budgets and new revenue resources.

On Wednesday, the Human Services, Youth, & Early Learning Committee heard HB 1045 Evergreen Basic Income Pilot Program (Rep. Berry) to reduce poverty. If passed, Washington would be the first state in the nation to pilot a guaranteed basic income (GBI) program. Specifically, the program would provide 24 monthly payments to up to 7,500 qualifying participants in an amount equal to 100% of the fair market rent for a two-bedroom dwelling unit in the county in which the participant resides.

On Thursday, both the House Appropriations and Senate Ways and Means Committees heard the Governor’s proposed $70.4 billion 2023-25 operating budget, which prioritizes increased funds for housing, mental health services, early education and social services, ecological preservation for salmon, and clean energy solutions.

The Housing Committee heard HB 1124 Protecting Tenants from Excessive Rent (Rep. Peterson), which would limit rent increases over a certain percentage to protect tenants from excessive rents and fees. The Finance Committee held a work session on the recommendations made to the Legislature by the Tax Structure Work Group.

On Friday, the Labor & Workforce Standards Committee heard
HB 1095 Unemployment Insurance for Undocumented Workers (Rep. Walen). This bill would create a permanent, separate unemployment system to provide benefits to undocumented workers.

To connect more about FAN’s policy work, please contact Policy Engagement Director Kristin at Ang@fanwa.org.

Take Action Next Week:
Sign in “Pro” and Testify

Please Note: For your sign-in choice to be counted, you need to sign in more than an hour prior to the beginning of the hearing.Also, if you are interested in signing in PRO on other bills, the general link for Committee Hearing Sign-Ins is https://app.leg.wa.gov/csi.


Two of the environment bills we are supporting with Earth Ministry will have their first hearing next week. SB 5154/HB 1131 Washington Recycling and Packaging Act (WRAP Act) will have public hearings on Tuesday, January 17: at 1:30pm in the Senate Committee on Environment, Energy and Technology;  and at 4:00pm in the House Committee on Environment & Energy. The WRAP Act would modernize and improve our recycling system while reducing plastics and wastes. The bill would shift costs away from ratepayers and onto manufacturers. Sign in PRO: for SB 5154 here, and for HB 1131 here.

HB 1181/SB 5203 Planning for a Climate Friendly Future will also have hearings on Tuesday, January 17: at 8:00am in the Senate Committee on Local Government, Land Use and Tribal Affairs and at 10:30am in the House Committee on Local Government. Planning for a Climate Friendly Future would require the largest and fastest-growing counties and cities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and vehicle miles traveled through land use planning. It would also require all counties planning under the Growth Management Act (GMA) to plan for resilience and address the impacts of climate change in land use plans. Sign in PRO: for
HB 1181 here and for SB 5203 here.


SB 5249 Expanding Eligibility for the Working Families’ Tax
 Credit would expand eligibility for this credit from people ages 25-64 to everyone age 18 and over. It will have a public hearing on Thursday, January 19 at 4:00pm. Sign in PRO here.

SB 5125/HB 1094 Washington Future Fund “Baby Bonds”
  is scheduled for a public hearing on Monday, January 16: at 10:30am in the Senate Committee on Human Services. It will also be heard on Friday, January 20, at 8:00am in the House Committee on Human Services, Youth, & Early Learning. The Baby Bonds bill aims to address the wealth gap and disrupt the generational cycle of poverty by allocating $3,200 each to children born under the state’s Medicaid program, Apple Health. These children would have access to the funds between the ages of 18 and 30 to use for education, housing, or small business. Sign in PRO: for SB 5125 here and for HB 1094 here.


SB 5078 Firearm Industry Responsibility & Gun Violence Victims’ Access to Justice Act
 is scheduled for a public hearing in the Senate Committee on Law & Justice on Tuesday, January 17, at 10:30am. This bill would require firearm industry members to establish, implement, and enforce reasonable controls regarding the manufacture, sale, distribution, importing, use, and marketing of firearm-related products. Sign in PRO here.

HB 1240 Banning the Sale of Assault Weapons is scheduled for a public hearing in the House Committee on Civil Rights & Judiciary on Tuesday, January 17, at 10:30am. This bill would prohibit the sale, manufacture, transport, and import of assault weapons in Washington State, while allowing reasonable exemptions for law enforcement and the military. The legislation does not prohibit the possession of assault weapons. Sign in PRO here.

HB 1177 Creating a Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and People Cold Case Investigations Unit is scheduled for a public hearing in the House Committee on Community Safety, Justice, & Reentry on Tuesday, January 17, at 4:00pmSign in PRO here


SB 5087 Repealing Unconstitutional Statutes in State Law including the Death Penalty
 is scheduled for a public hearing in the Senate Committee on Law & Justice on Monday, January 16, at 10:30amSign in PRO here.


SB 5236 Concerning Hospital Staffing Standards is scheduled for a public hearing in the Senate Labor & Commerce Committee on Tuesday, January 17, at 10:30am. FAN has endorsed the WA Safe + Healthy Campaign for healthcare workers in partnership with UFCW 3000. This bill would improve worker safety and patient care in health care facilities by addressing staffing needs, overtime, meal and rest breaks, and enforcement. Sign in PRO here.

Events for MLK Day and Beyond

Seattle: January 13, 5:00pm. Join Temple De Hirsch Sinai & First African Methodist Episcopal for MLK Weekend beginning tonight with a Worship Service featuring Pastor Carey Anderson and the FAME Gospel Choir: View the full schedule here.

Now through January 16. Seattle/King County, Martin Luther King Community Workshop Series, online January 10-14, and in-person January 16, 9:30 – 10:50am, at Garfield HS Seattle. See webpage for information and registration. On Monday 1/16, Annual Rally at 11am and March starting at Garfield HS.

Tacoma: January 15, 2:00-5:00pm. 17th Annual MLK Jr. Redeeming the Prophetic Vision: Calling in the Beloved Community. Evergreen State College, Tacoma. Presented by Associated Ministries and the Conversation 253, come, hear and be inspired by multiple faith traditions and activists toward action for justice and unity. Register Here.

Spokane: January 15, 3:00-5:00pm, Martin Luther King Commemorative Celebration, Spokane NAACP at Holy Temple Church of God in Christand January 16, 11:30am-2:00PM, MLK DAY Annual Unity Rally, March and Resource Fair, Spokane Convention Center. Find out more here.

Renton: January 15, 3:00pm, Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration featuring Carl B. Mack at Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Baptist Church, 4519 NE 10th Street, Renton.

Yakima: January 15, 3:00 pm, City Wide MLK Jr Commemoration Service at Greater Faith Baptist Church, 816 S 6th St, Yakima. January 16, 11:30 am, 38th Annual MLK Jr Peace March. Gather on the corner of 5th Ave and MLK Jr Boulevard, a short program will follow after the march.

Edmonds: January 16, 9:30-11:30am, “When Love Changes Things” The 5th Annual Tribute to Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at Edmonds Waterfront Center. Free youth event including performances, spoken word and activities for the whole family. 5:30pm, Evening Program, find out more about these events here.

January 18, 6:30-8:00, online. Interrogating Privilege, Northwest Washington Synod ELCA, this 8-week course is designed specifically for lay leaders to open up transparent, and honest conversations around the ways privilege shapes and impacts our lives and communities of faith. Register here.

January 25, 5:30pm. Immanuel Presbyterian Church, Tacoma, will host an educational event on Passing Responsible Gun Legislation for WA, open to the Pierce County/Tacoma community. It will be held in their Fellowship Hall and include a light dinner. Featuring Tremayne Edwards from the Alliance for Gun Responsibility, with training for effective advocacy and lobbying. Register here.

January 26, 5:00-6:30pm, online. Sacredly Speaking: God-Talk About Reproductive Freedom, presented by The Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice (RCRC) in partnership with Seattle First Baptist Church and the Evergreen Association of American Baptist Churches. Register here.

2023 LOBBY DAYS (that we know so far):

January 16, 9am, on Zoom. Statewide Poverty Action’s MLK Lobby Day, register here.

January 21, 8:30am-3:00pm, in Spokane & online, Eastern WA Legislative Conference, register here.

January 26, 11:30am, in Olympia, Support Capital Gains Rally, register here

February 6-8, online, Washington Low Income Housing Alliance, Housing and Homelessness Advocacy Days, register here.

February 7, in Olympia, Hunger Action Day at Temple Beth Hatfiloh. Registration to come.

February 9, 9am-3pm, in Olympia, Interfaith Advocacy Day, register here.

February 15, online, Multifaith Restorative Justice Coalition, register here.

February 16, 9am-5pm, in Olympia, WAISN Immigrant and Refugee Advocacy Day, register here.

February 20, 9am, online, Children’s Alliance Have a Heart for Kids Day, register here.

We always post the E-News to our website each week at fanwa.org/news/.

Faith Action Network
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