Women's Foundation California | 9 Bills You Need to Know on the Governor's Desk

9 Bills You Need to Know on the Governor’s Desk

by Nicola

With most bills stalled due to the Coronavirus, our WPI fellows quickly pivoted to advocate for WPI alum and WFC partner legislation addressing urgent issues as our state continues to address systemic racism, a pandemic, and wildfires.

We’re proud that WPI alum and WFC partner organizations put forward nine bills this year and seven bills have been signed by the Governor. This is just the first step. All of these key pieces of legislation address a range of gender, racial, and economic justice issues affecting communities in our state. Learn more and about these bills and let’s continue to push forward gender justice in California!

AB 732 – SIGNED

County jails: prisons: incarcerated pregnant persons
Assembly Member Rob Bonta
Description: This bill will improve the quality of reproductive health care, support, and accommodations for incarcerated people in state prisons and county jails.

WPI Alum: Lorena Garcia Zermeno, Martha Gonzalez, Karen A. Scott, MD

SB 493 – SIGNED

Education: sex equity
Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson
Description:  This bill would create a common set of accountability standards for public colleges and universities, and provisions for the welfare of sexual assault victims, (ensure that institutions of higher education have adequate policies and processes in place to appropriately respond to sex-based discrimination, including sexual harassment and violence), to ensure equitable access to education as required by existing law.

WPI Alum: Payal Sinha

SB 555

Jails and juvenile facilities: communications, information, and commissary services: contracts.
Sen. Holly J. Mitchell
Description: the Jail Fair Access for Connections to Support (FACTS) Act will reduce the heavy financial burden placed on the families and support systems of incarcerated individuals. SB 555 aims to eliminate the exorbitant costs of communications (including phone calls, video visitation and electronic communications), regulate the prices for goods sold inside county jails (hygiene products and food), and require that profits made from these services are reinvested to support people incarcerated in California County Jails, as well as their transition back into their communities.

WPI Mentor: Emily Harris
WPI Alums: Amika Mota, Danica Rodarmel, and Michaé de la Cuadra

SB 1237 – SIGNED

Nurse-midwives: scope of practice.
Sen. Bill Dodd
Description: The Justice and Equity in Maternity Care Act, would eliminate the requirement of physician supervision of nurse-midwives, thus allowing access to high-value, high-quality maternal health care and improve maternal and newborn health outcomes during a time in which California faces a critical obstetrician shortage and significant race-based disparities in maternal and infant outcomes.

WPI Partner: California Coalition for Reproductive Freedom
WPI Class of 2020 Repro Health, Rights, & Justice team

SB 973 – SIGNED

Employers: annual report: pay data.
Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson
Description: This bill would require CA employers with 100 or more employees to submit a pay data report annually to the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), our state agency that enforces our anti-discrimination laws, and will encourage employers to analyze their own pay & hiring practices to ensure they are fair while promoting self-evaluation & correction where necessary to rectify unjustified gender or race-based pay gaps or trends of occupational segregation (where women and people of color are concentrated in lower-paid positions.

WFC Partner: Stronger California

SB 1257

Employment safety standards: household domestic services.
Sen. María Elena Durazo
Description: This bill would eliminate the “household domestic service” exclusion under the California Occupational Health and Safety Act (Cal/OSHA), and would require employers to provide a safe working environment to household domestic workers.

WFC Partner: Stronger California

AB 2542 – SIGNED

Criminal procedure: discrimination
Assemblymember Ash Kalra
Description: This bill would prohibit the state from seeking or obtaining a criminal conviction, or from imposing a sentence, based on race, ethnicity or national origin.

WPI Mentor: Emily Harris
WPI Alum: Ginny Oshiro

SB 1383 – SIGNED

Unlawful employment practice: California Family Rights Act.
Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson
Description: This bill would provide job-protected leave for employees of employers with 5+ employees to bond with a new child or to care for a family member’s serious illness or their own serious illness under the CA Family Rights Act (CFRA) It also aligns definitions of “family member” under job-protection law (CFRA) and Paid Family Leave wage replacement program.

WFC Partner: Stronger California

AB 2218 – SIGNED

Transgender Wellness and Equity Fund
Assemblymember Miguel Santiago
Description: This bill would provide grants to transgender-led nonprofit organizations and healthcare providers to create programs that provide medical and direct supportive services for transgender, gender non-conforming and/or intersex (TGI) people.

WFC Partner: Transgender Wellness Fund
WPI Alum: Michaé de la Cuadra


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