Pa. state Rep. Chris Rabb is introducing legislation that would create the First Chance Trust Fund to help with the educational costs of children with incarcerated parents. It would be funded by a surcharge on larger Dept. of Corrections vendors and not raise taxes for Pa. taxpayers. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Stephen Kinsey speaks at a Capitol labor rally in defense of jobs that provide a family sustaining wages, good benefits and a Pennsylvania worker's right to unionize. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Vanessa Lowery Brown recognizes June 19, 2017 as "Juneteenth Independence Day" honoring the same date in 1865 on which slavery was abolished finally in all regions of the United States. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Stephen Kinsey recognizes June 19, 2017 as "Juneteenth Independence Day" honoring the same date in 1865 on which slavery was abolished finally in all regions of the United States. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Stephen Kinsey speaks against expanding gaming in Pennsylvania. This legislation would potentially allow "Stop and Gos" in Philadelphia neighborhoods to add Video Gaming Terminals, further deteriorating the quality of life in the surrounding communities, while taking money away from the Property Tax Relief Fund and other programs for Pa. senior citizens. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Jason Dawkins speaks against expanding gaming in Pennsylvania. This legislation would potentially allow "Stop and Gos" in Philadelphia neighborhoods to add Video Gaming Terminals, further deteriorating the quality of life in the surrounding communities. Read more
HARRISBURG, June 8 – State Rep. Jason Dawkins, D-Phila., voted against legislation that would dramatically expand gambling in Pennsylvania. Dawkins said the expansion would not only saturate the gambling market at the expense of the Pennsylvania Lottery and the senior citizens programs it supports, it would further threaten the safety and quality of life of residents in the neighborhoods he serves and throughout Philadelphia. House Bill 271 includes authorizing up to 30,000 locations for video gaming terminals at licensed liquor retailers and establishments by the end of 2018 and 40,000 by 2020, as well as gambling tablets or “iGaming” at Pennsylvania’s six international airports, including Philadelphia. Dawkins added the "stop and go" liquor businesses that have been such a problem in Philadelphia would be eligible and that there is no distribution formula for ensuring that Philadelphia neighborhoods are not saddled with the majority of machines. “My concern is about the stop and go locations. It is a fact that 75 percent of gamblers have a drinking disorder. We have a saturation of stop and go’s in Philadelphia and this constitutes another challenge for us,” Dawkins said. “When you live in communities like mine, when you see poverty, addiction and opioid abuse, you can’t understand how we are putting another potential problem in our city. “It’s impossible not to think about our Read more
Chairman of the Pa. Legislative Black Caucus Rep. Jordan Harris spoke to a group of advocates gathered in the State Capitol for Sickle Cell Advocacy Day. Harris encouraged them to speak to as many legislators as possible and to advocate with anyone who will listen for restored funding in the state budget for Sickle Cell resources. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Stephen Kinsey honored the Tuskegee Airmen as part of his Salute to Veterans event held in Germantown's Market Square in Philadelphia. Mr. Nathan Thomas is a documented original Tuskegee Airman who resides in Rep. Kinsey's district. Read more
Vice Chairwoman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus Donna Bullock & Pa. state Rep. Morgan Cephas urge reforms and awareness for access to mental health services in the black community. The Black Brain Campaign is an effort to break the stigma of mental health in the black community through education and advocacy. Read more
At a recent meeting of the Pa. House Judiciary Committee, Rep. Joanna McClinton explains that she is in favor of a bill creating a merit selection system for appellate judges because it creates a more equal opportunity for minorities and women to be on the bench in the Commonwealth's highest courts. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Donna Bullock celebrates the 40th Anniversary of the Fair Housing Act, with a House Resolution recognizing April 2017 as Fair Housing Month in Pennsylvania. The theme for this year's Fair Housing Month is "Fair Housing Equals Opportunity." Read more
Pa. state Rep. Donna Bullock hosted a public hearing to discuss ways to work with law enforcement, community leaders and businesses to rid Philadelphia of "Stop and Go" nuisance bars. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Joanna McClinton thanks the House of Representatives for their unanimous support of her resolution recognizing April 10, 2017 as "National Youth HIV & AIDS Awareness Day" in Pennsylvania. The day of awareness is aimed at reducing infections among young people nationwide. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Stephen Kinsey co-sponsored a House Resolution honoring the life and legacy of Jackie Robinson and celebrating April 15, 2017 as the 70th anniversary of Robinson breaking the color barrier in Major League Baseball. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Joanna McClinton hosted the House Democratic Policy Committee in South West Philadelphia for a discussion on reforming the pretrial and bail procedures in Pennsylvania. Many inmates are stuck in jail because they have pretrial issues or simply cannot afford bail which not only increases costs for taxpayers, but also has a human cost for the incarcerated and their families. Philadelphia and Allegheny Counties have instituted some reforms that have seen positive results and McClinton is looking to apply that statewide. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Donna Bullock attended a House Democratic Policy Committee in South West Philadelphia for a discussion on reforming the pretrial and bail procedures in Pennsylvania. Many inmates are stuck in jail because they have pretrial issues or simply cannot afford bail which not only increases costs for taxpayers, but also has a human cost for the incarcerated and their families. Philadelphia and Allegheny Counties have instituted some reforms that have seen positive results and Bullock is looking to apply that statewide. Read more
HARRISBURG, April 5 – State Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, strongly opposed a bill the House passed today (H.B. 741) that would revive several mandatory minimum sentences that have been struck down in the courts. "Mandatory minimums don't work. Between 1980 and 1995, when mandatory minimums were popular and in full effect here and in other states, violent crime actually increased nearly 20 percent," Harris said. "Mandatory minimums silence the voice of the voters who elect judges, not robots. Mandatory minimums remove discretion – just as with hats, one size does not fit all. "And apparently many of those who voted for mandatory minimums don't actually want to fund them. House Republicans also passed a budget this week that would cut $130 million more from the Corrections Department than the governor's budget would – even though the mandatory minimum bill would add another $66 million to $85 million per year in costs! For the same amount this bill would cost, we could provide drug treatment for more than 9,000 people." Harris said he hopes the state Senate will take a wiser approach. "I've been working on criminal justice reform with members of both parties in the House and Senate, as well as groups that range from progressive to conservative. There's strong public support in Pennsylvania for criminal justice reform and I still believe Read more
Chairman of the Pa. Legislative Black Caucus, state Rep. Jordan Harris argues against reinstating mandatory minimum sentencing for certain crimes in Pennsylvania. Read more
Pa. state Rep. Stephen Kinsey congratulates the Urban League of Philadelphia on over 100 years of advocacy for African-Americans and other minorities. Read more
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