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In this week’s update:

For more on WSNA’s 2019 Legislative Priorities click here.

Week 10 recap

Our bills continue to move through the legislative process – and this week one of those bills was highlighted on TVW’s Legislative Review. On Monday, our workplace violence prevention bill, HB 1931, was heard by the Senate Labor & Commerce Committee. WSNA member Stevie Lynne Krone, RN and WSNA Associate Director of Public Affairs Travis Elmore, RN testified in support of this legislation. WSNA member Wes McMahan also joined us in Olympia to lend his support for the rest breaks bill.

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On Tuesday, both our priority bills (workplace violence, HB 1931 and rest breaks, SHB 1155) were voted out of the Senate Labor & Commerce Committee. These bills were both referred to the Senate Ways & Means Committee, where hearings have been scheduled for Tuesday, March 26.

Budget news

The State Economic and Revenue Forecast Council met on March 20, and revenues are up $307 million for the current biennium (2017-19) and $554 million for the 2019-21 biennium. This means the legislature has more funding to work with it digs into its biennial budget.

Following the revenue forecast, the House will release its budget on Monday. The Senate is expected to unveil its budget shortly thereafter.

Rest breaks bill update

On Tuesday, our rest break bill (SHB 1155) was voted out the Senate Labor & Commerce Committee and is now headed to the Senate Ways & Means Committee. A hearing has been scheduled for Tuesday.

Your support and advocacy remain crucial to ensuring that this bill continues to make its way to the Senate floor! We continue to need your help as this bill makes its way on to the Senate Ways & Means Committee. We know that when nurses speak, lawmakers listen! If you haven’t done so already, click here to tell your legislators to support rest breaks for nurses.

Also, please visit the WSNA Facebook page where you’ll find a #BreaksAreALifesaver frame that you can apply to your own profile photo – you’ll find it at the top of our page. Encourage your friends, family members and co-workers to add this frame to their profile picture to show that they support rest breaks for health care workers!

Workplace violence prevention bills

Our workplace violence bill HB 1931, was heard by the Senate Labor Committee on Monday. WSNA member Stevie Lynne Krone, RN, from Spokane and WSNA Associate Director of Public Affairs, Travis Elmore RN, testified in support of this legislation. Their testimony was featured in a segment of this week’s TVW’s “Legislative Review”.

This bill updates the definition of workplace violence; requires health care facilities to update their workplace violence prevention plans every three years (with an annual review of incidents and any necessary adjustments) and outlines what needs to be included in those plans; and, provide specificity around what elements must be included in workplace violence prevention trainings. Tell your legislators that this bill is important for nurses!

Attend your Legislative Town Hall

Legislators are continuing to hold Town Hall meetings this weekend. Please show up at these events and ask your legislators to support uninterrupted rest breaks and workplace violence prevention!

You can find the list of Legislative Town Hall meetings on the WSNA website.

If you need to look up your Legislative District, you can do that by entering your home address on the District Finder available on the Legislature’s website.

Please look for texts and regular email updates on legislative action as the legislative session continues – thank you for participation in the process!