In this week’s update:

  • Week 12 recap
  • Governor signs Founda­tional Public Health Services bill
  • Rest breaks bill update — email your legislators
  • Rest breaks in the news
  • Workplace violence preven­tion bills update – email your legislators
  • Governor signs Tobacco 21 bill

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

Week 12 recap #

On Tuesday, the Senate released its budget. It included new, ongoing funding for public health, but no new funds for nursing faculty salaries nor for school nurses. Now the House and Senate will enter budget negoti­a­tions to work toward a final budget that they can send to Governor Inslee.

On Wednesday, the rest breaks bill (SHB 1155) was voted out of the Senate Ways and Means Committee. It now heads to the Senate Rules committee. Also on Wednesday, Governor Inslee signed HB 1497 into law, providing a frame­work for Founda­tional Public Health Services, as well as alloca­tion instruc­tions for any new state funding.

Last week this email included news that the bill to raise the age to purchase tobacco products to 21 passed the senate. That bill was signed into law by Governor Inslee today!

Governor signs Foundational Public Health Services bill #

On Wednesday, Governor Jay Inslee signed HB 1497 into law, surrounded by public health advocates and stake­holders from across the state. WSNA was repre­sented at the bill signing by Associate Director of Public Affairs, Travis Elmore, BSN, RN. HB 1497 provides a struc­ture for imple­menting Founda­tional Public Health Services in Washington state by codifying these services and by requiring the Depart­ment of Health, local health juris­dic­tions and sover­eign tribal nations to work together to deter­mine how funds allocated by the state for public health are to be used. Both the House and Senate budgets allocate new money for public health, however the final amount is yet to be deter­mined through the budget negoti­a­tions process. WSNA has been a strong advocate for public health funding for decades, and worked on this bill for the past four years — we join our public health colleagues in celebrating it becoming law.

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Rest breaks bill update #

On Wednesday our rest break bill (SHB 1155) was voted out of the Senate Ways and Means Committee on a 13 – 10 vote! This bill now heads to the Senate Rules Committee for review. As this bill moves one step closer to becoming law your support and advocacy remain crucial to ensuring that this bill continues to make its way to the Senate floor!

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!

Rest Breaks in the news #

Several media sources around the state covered the rest breaks bill in the last week:

Workplace violence prevention bills #

Our workplace violence bill HB 1931, was also heard least week in the Senate Ways and Means committee. WSNA is working hard to ensure that this bill is voted out of committee by next week’s deadline. You can help by clicking here and sending your Senator a message in support of the workplace violence preven­tion bill – it takes less than a minute!

Governor signs Tobacco 21 bill #

Today, Governor Inslee signed into law the bill that raises the age to purchase tobacco products from 18 to 21. WSNA has supported this legis­la­tion for the past few years, and believes that it will help improve public health.

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Rep. Paul Harris (R-17), bill sponsor of the Tobacco 21 legislation, speaks at the bill signing this afternoon as Governor Jay Inslee and others look on.

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