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PUBLIC POLICY UPDATE
Thursday, April 18, 2013
Inform~Inspire~Connect

The California Partnership to End Domestic Violence believes that by sharing expertise,

advocates and legislators can end domestic violence. Every day we inspire, inform and

connect all of those working on this issue, because together we're stronger.

California Update

As usual, April has been a very busy month here in Sacramento! Committee hearings are in full swing as the legislature debates all of the bills introduced this year. Click here for information about all of the bills the Partnership is tracking. 

Upcoming Hearings upcominghearings

SB 400 (Jackson) will be heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee next Tuesday, April 23rd at 1:30 p.m.  The bill already passed the Senate Labor and Industrial Relations Committee last week. SB 400 will protect survivors from termination or discrimination in the workplace due to their known status as survivors, and ensure that employers provide survivors with reasonable safety accommodations. The Partnership is co-sponsoring SB 400, along with the Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center and the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault .  

Recent Hearings recenthearings

SB 612 (Leno) was heard in the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday and passed with a unanimous 7-0 vote! This bill, which the Partnership is co-sponsoring with the National Housing Law Project, will expand the list of permitted documentation for survivors seeking to terminate their leases to relocate for their safety. SB 612 also adds human trafficking survivors to those included under this provision. This expansion will ensure that more survivors have access to this safety measure. Thank you to everyone who submitted a support letter!

 

Assembly Budget Subcommittee - The Partnership provided written and oral testimony for the Assembly Budget Subcommittee #5 recent hearing on the courts budget. Our testimony focused on survivors' access to justice in the wake of recent court budget cuts.
Federal Update
Immigration Reformimmigration
Yesterday, the US Senate released a comprehensive immigration reform bill.  While we are still working with our state and national partners to absorb all the details, we are excited to say that the bill does include a U-visa increase to 18,000 (up from the current 10,000)!  We are very excited that this was included in the initial bill, and the Partnership will continue advocating for its inclusion in the House bill and any final comprehensive immigration reform.
Firearms Legislationfirearms

On Tuesday, the State Senate Public Safety Committee heard and passed multiple pieces of firearms legislation, including a package of priority bills known as the LIFE Act.  Information about the LIFE Act is available here, and the Partnership's position statement on firearms is posted on our website.

 

This Thursday the U.S. Senate held key votes on several pieces of firearms legislation, including Senator Feinstein's proposed assault weapon ban and legislation to regulate large capacity ammunition feeding devices, both of which failed to gain majority support. 

 

The Senate also had a critical vote on the Manchin-Toomey compromise background check amendment, which would expand the background check system to all commercial gun sales.  This important measure failed by a vote of 54-46.  Despite having majority support, it was unable to meet the 60 vote threshold needed to end debate and bring a final vote for passage. 

 

More than half of women murdered with guns in the U.S. are killed by intimate partners. More than half of mass shootings are acts of domestic violence or family violence. Domestic violence offenders who are federally prohibited from purchasing guns can avoid a background check by buying guns from unlicensed "private sellers" who are not required by federal law to conduct background checks on potential buyers.  The Partnership recognizes the important role that background checks play in keeping firearms out of the hands of offenders.  We will continue to advocate in support of strengthened federal legislation and support sensible legislation that will increase public safety. 

Partnership News
Statewide Week of Advocacy - Meeting Forms and Evaluationsstatewideweekofadvocacy

Thank you again to everyone who participated in our Statewide Week of Advocacy! Please take a few moments to complete the short meeting form at the link below. This information helps inform our work with the elected officials here in Sacramento.  We also have an evaluation form for you to complete so that we can improve this event for future years. 

 

Meeting Form  

 

Information on Nonprofits Engaging in Lobbying Activitieslobbying

We recognize that many members have questions about the rules for non-profits engaging in lobbying activities, particularly at this time of year when we ask you to submit support letters and participate in the Statewide Week of Advocacy. Lobbying is not only legal for non-profits, but it is one of the most effective ways for us to make our voices heard! Our strength comes from the broad-based support of local programs, and that strength is clearly demonstrated through your participation in our lobbying efforts. Information about the rules you need to follow is available through the Alliance for Justice's Bolder Advocacy website, here.

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For questions or concerns about policy-related matters, please contact Krista Niemczyk, Partnership Public Policy Specialist, at krista@cpedv.org.