Four Criminal Justice Bills need to be passed in state Senate
Dear Friends of Friends Committee of Washington Public Policy, The following four bills are currently in the Senate Rules Committee and must be moved out of Rules and voted on by the full Senate by this Friday, March 7. So time is at a premium! We urge you to contact your state Senator to urge support for each of these four bills. Support HB 1651: Youth Opportunity Act HB 1651 would seal certain juvenile offender records unless, upon the objection of any person or other compelling reason identified by the court, the court determines that sealing is not appropriate. Currently such records are made available for publication, distribution, or to be sold. Records would not be sealed for sex offenses for which registration is required, serious violent offenses, and certain other serious crimes. Individuals who have interactions with law enforcement or the courts in their youth should not be forever compromised by public dissemination of documents related to those interactions. Support HB 2231: Reduced penalties from mentally ill offenders unable to pay legal financial obligations. HB 2231 prevents failure to pay a monthly sum towards legal financial obligations (court costs, fines, etc.) from being considered “willful noncompliance” if the offender is mentally ill, and, accordingly, prohibits penalties for noncompliance in that circumstance. The original bill also included homeless persons, but, unfortunately, their inclusion was deleted by the Senate Human Services and Corrections Committee. Support HB 2164: Interventions for unlawful juvenile possession of firearms HB 2164 requires most juveniles determined to be in unlawful possession of a firearm to participate in certain evidence-based or research-based programs, unless no appropriate qualifying program is available. Support HB 1840: Restrict firearm possession for persons subject to a restraining order When a restraining order includes a finding that the person against whom it has been issued represents a credible threat to the physical safety of an intimate partner or child, HB 1840: 1. Prohibits that person from obtaining or possessing a firearm, other dangerous weapon, or concealed pistol license. 2. Requires that person to surrender any firearm, other dangerous weapon, or concealed pistol license. Thank you! FCWPP Criminal Justice Working Group and FCWPP Legislative Committee Contacting your legislators: Legislators’ email addresses are in the form: email@example.com, so, for example, Sen. Rodney Tom is Rodney.Tom@leg.wa.gov. Or you can leave a phone message for your legislators, using the Legislative Hotline at 1-800-562-6000. To find the names of your current legislators, go to: http://app.leg.wa.gov/DistrictFinder/ and enter your street address. ________________________________________________________________ In addition to your direct involvement in advocacy, FCWPP needs your financial support to continue its work. Credit card contributions may be made online at https://qvwa.org, by clicking on the “Donate” button near the top of the page on the right. Directions for making contributions by check is also on the website. Because FCWPP is a lobbying organization, contributions are not tax deductible.