Join me for a town hall this Saturday
Together with Senator Steve Litzow and Representative Tana Senn, I’m hosting a district town hall meeting this Saturday, February 20th from 2-3:30pm. We’ll be meeting at Somerset Elementary School (14100 Somerset Blvd SE, Bellevue, WA 98006) to discuss what has happened so far this legislative session and hear from you about the issues that you care about. Please consider stopping by to share your ideas, concerns, or questions.
Access to health care for all children who need it
Imagine a homeless teenager with a raging case of strep throat or a seriously sprained ankle who can’t get care because they can’t get authorization from a parent or guardian. Currently, the only option is for the teen to wait until their illness or injury becomes serious enough to need emergency hospitalization.
The House passed a measure granting school officials the authority to provide consent for non-emergent medical services for homeless youth.
Homeless youth often do not have the contact or relationship with their parent or guardian to get consent for ordinary or chronic illnesses. Waiting to treat these conditions until they become emergencies only makes the conditions worse and more costly to treat.
If signed into law, the measure would authorize school nurses, counselors, and homeless student liaisons to provide consent for homeless, unaccompanied youth to receive nonemergency, outpatient primary care services.
Young people experiencing homelessness are already facing enough challenges – this is one small but compassionate step in the right direction.
Washington tops the charts in job and wage growth
According to the most recent Automatic Data Processing Vitality Index report, which analyzes private-sector job and wage growth, Washington outpaced all other states during the last quarter of 2015 compared with the previous period.
This Seattle Times story breaks it down, but here are the highlights:
- With an index score of 117.9, Washington topped the national average of 106.8, as well as other states, like California, 108.7; Texas, 108.8; and New York, 105.4.
- Employment climbed by 3.7 percent in Washington, compared to the national average of 2.1. Most of the job growth was in construction, information technology, professional services, and leisure and hospitality industries.
- For current full-time employees, wages in Washington were up 5 percent year-over-year during the fourth quarter, compared with 4.1 percent nationally.