MMIWG task force
This session I successfully co-authored a bill that created a task force to investigate the epidemic of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. The Governor held a special signing ceremony in the Historic Capitol building and the work officially begins in September.
My bill to protect victims of sexual violence
It’s rare for Democrats to get bills signed into law in Arizona’s Republican controlled legislature. Out of the 300-plus bills that the governor signed into law, only eight were Democratic sponsored bills and one of them was mine. My bill SB1250 to help sexual assault victims get needed restraining orders passed through the House and Senate with unanimous approval.
Here’s a great story on the bill:
Oversight of migrants in detention facilities I joined my fellow Democratic Senators in sending a letter demanding the governor & attorney general investigate reports of sexual abuse of migrant children by Customs & Border Patrol Officials in Yuma. Abusing children is a federal crime and it must stop and protective oversight must begin immediately.
Extending The Statute of Limitations for victims of child rape
One of the most important bills that I helped pass this session was actually a Republican bill giving survivors more time to sue in civil court (until age 30) and a one-year window for those who were time-barred and past the age of the statute of limitation.
Some lawmakers fought the expansion of the statue of limitations because they feared what it might do to organizations like churches, universities and the Boy Scouts. I shared my personal story of child sexual abuse (which is harder for me to do than most people realize) and I worked hard to help my Senate colleagues see that when someone is sued for child sex abuse, it often shines a light on serial pedophiles. Not, shining that light allows the abusers continued access to new victims. I told my fellow Lawmakers they had a choice – either protect the victims of child sexual abuse or protect those who rape them. Fortunately, our efforts were successful and the bill passed unanimously on Memorial Day.
For more information:
Arizona Lawmakers Kill Bill That Would Allow Some Child Sex Offenders To Bypass Registry
Yes, a little trash talking feels good. We handed Cathi Herrod and her Center for Arizona Progress cabal, an unprecedented defeat and prevented any further setbacks to our reproductive freedoms for the year. They tried to spend millions in taxpayer’s dollars to fund crisis pregnancy centers but we quashed their efforts. We know she will be back again next year and we will be ready for her.
The Equal Rights Amendment
I introduced the Equal Rights Amendment once again but this time we came closer than we’ve been in a long time. We got a two-hour debate on the ERA on the Senate Floor – something that hasn’t happened since 1974 when the only two women supporting the measure were Sister Claire Dunn (H-Dem) and Sandra Day O’Connor (S-Rep). During our debate this year, it was interesting because every time a Republican stood to argue against the ERA, they showed exactly why it is so sorely needed. Our efforts this year stopped short of an actual vote so we will continue pushing to make Arizona the historic 38th state to ratify the ERA.
I did get my 4.5 seconds of fame on the John Oliver Show on HBO. It’s an eye-opening deep dive into the ERA and of course it’s hilarious.
Drought Contingency Plan (DCP)
As a member of the Senate Water and Agriculture Committee, I am proud to tell you that the Arizona Legislature passed the Drought Contingency Plan by the deadline. However, our work is not done. This plan does not address or even mention climate change. Yet, it is all about climate change.
Now that we’ve voted to approve the DCP, we can’t stick our heads in the Arizona sand and pretend our water problems are fixed. This crisis of drought (aridification) and climate change mandates that we work together from different areas of the state, different industries, economies and across political lines.
The DCP, is not the end-all-be-all to protect our water. It is a critical stop-gap measure in an era of water scarcity. As your Senator, I remain committed to developing policies that ensure a sustainable water supply for our state and water policy that protects our rivers, lakes, streams and our drinking water.
Charter school reform
We pushed for true Charter School Reform but the only option that was voted on was a bill that was written by the Charter School Lobbyists so we passed and helped to kill the bill. We will continue fighting for meaningful reform, not just something that allows a few to check off the box without really making the changes that are necessary.
Guns in schools - what could go wrong?
We halted efforts by the gun lobby to pass a dangerous law to allow loaded guns on school grounds. You’re welcome.