Very, very early at 2:00 a.m. Wednesday morning, after a 6-hour debate and several days after Governor Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency over the COVID-19 novel coronavirus, Democrats in the Washington House of Representatives pushed SB 5395, the SeXXX Education Bill, through to final passage.
At the time of this writing, the coronavirus has claimed fourteen lives here in Washington State. Schools are beginning to close as infections pop up around the nation. It is, no doubt, a serious public health concern and, I believe, worthy of the governor’s emergency declaration. It is deserving of our full attention.
Several bills have moved during this health crisis that the public may not be aware of, and due to the concerns, public interaction has been much lower.
- SB 5395, the SeXXX Education Bill, was moved from committee and passed;
- HB 1775, which would legalize underage prostitution, has been moved all the way to the Senate Rules Committee – the final step before a floor vote;
- SB 6037, which would create racist hiring quotas for businesses, was passed by the House and the Senate
Ironically, another one of the bills that has moved during this time of public health concern is HB 1551, a bill that downplays the seriousness of someone intentionally infecting others with a communicable disease. This may demonstrate a disconnect between funding for the coronavirus and good public policy.
Less than one week remains in the legislative session and experts say the coronavirus is likely to spread in Washington – not decrease – during that time. There’s less than one week left in the legislative session, so please do not disengage now.
Mark 12:31 tells us that we are called to “love our neighbors,” and help out in times of public need. And we should continue to do those things.
But we also need to remain diligent in the realm of government, where those who seek to end religious freedom, enshrine up-to-the-birth abortions, and cut down parental rights currently retain a significant amount of power.
Don’t unplug from the public process. Hold your legislators accountable and continue to advocate for you and your family – even during a public health crisis. The Washington legislative hotline number is 1-800-562-6000.
And remember – every member of the Washington State House of Representatives is up for re-election this year. If you aren’t happy with the way you’re represented, do something about it. Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to start a conversation.
We’ll continue to keep the FPIW Bill Tracker live and up-to-date.