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Cephas: Another virus is spreading around amongst children and must be stopped

Why do Black American women die having babies?

(Jun 03, 2021)

Mary C. Curtis sits down with Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith, President Joe Biden's pick to lead the task force on health equity. They discuss why Black people suffer disproportionately and what is being done to change the equation. Read more

 

Cephas announces $250K Commonwealth Financing Authority grant awarded to Wynnefield Overbrook Revitalization Cooperation

(May 28, 2021)

HARRISBURG, May 28 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., today announced that a $250,000 Commonwealth Financing Authority grant has been awarded to the Wynnefield Overbrook Revitalization Cooperation in the 192nd Legislative District. Cephas said the funding will go towards blight remediation efforts for two Brownfield parcels on Lancaster Avenue. Each site will be developed to include the Overbrook Urban Farm and Training Center (6122 Lancaster Ave.) and the Overbrook Farmacy Market (6150 Lancaster Ave.). Additionally, a building on 6150 Lancaster Ave. will be demolished and the site will be prepared for new development. “This grant aims to transform this former industrial site into a community showpiece that stands to benefit this West Philadelphia neighborhood,” Cephas said. “I am also proud to see that the pandemic hasn’t slowed down the commitment to making investments in our communities.” Cephas adds that interested parties should contact her office for more information about similar grant opportunities. Juveniles Active in Science & Technology (JASTECH) Development Services, Inc. in Overbrook served as a community partner in developing this grant application. The Commonwealth Financing Authority was established in 2004 as an independent agency of the Department of Community and Economic Development to administer Pennsylvania's economic stimulus packages. Read more

 

Cephas, Davis, Jones, Mizgorski unveil Dignity for Incarcerated Women Act

(May 26, 2021)

HARRISBURG, May 26 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., along with state Reps. Tina Davis, D-Bucks; Mike Jones, R-York; and Lori A. Mizgorski, R-Allegheny, hosted a news conference today to unveil the Dignity for Incarceration Act, bipartisan legislation that aims to make comprehensive reforms to how women and femme-identifying people are treated in correctional institutions. “When we talk about the health and well-being of women, we mean all women and femme-identifying individuals including incarcerated women,” Cephas said. “We stand alongside one another today to send a message to our colleagues that dignity for incarcerated women transcends county and party lines and is an issue the state legislature should get behind. Our mothers, daughters and sisters deserve to be treated with dignity and respect and should not be forced to face inhumane treatment such as being shackled while giving birth or being denied necessary feminine hygiene or incontinence products. We must codify current state policy and enact this legislation to help prevent further mental and physical health implications for all of Pennsylvania’s incarcerated women, their children and families.” Over the span of three decades Pennsylvania has seen a significant increase in the number of incarcerated women, and the DFIW Act bill would provide well-vetted provisions at both the state and county level, with necessary oversight from children and youth services. Read more

 

Cephas to host youth town hall, summer employment workshop

(May 19, 2021)

PHILADELPHIA, May 19 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., announced today that she will host a virtual Youth Town Hall on ways young people can manage their mental health in the wake of two public health crisis: gun violence and COVID-19, while offering resources and activities for staying engaged this summer. Cephas said her town hall stands to provide much needed resources for local youth as they become increasingly susceptible to the adverse impacts of social isolation stemming from COVID-19, and grapple with the gun violence epidemic across Philadelphia. The virtual discussion will take place this Saturday, May 22 from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Attendees will also learn about the COVID-19 vaccine for youth, summer youth employment opportunities, and will be able to register for on-site assistance with employment applications from 2 p.m.- 4 p.m. at one of the following local community centers: Shepard Recreation Center, 5700 Haverford Ave.,19131 Tustin Recreation Center, 5901 W Columbia Ave., 19151 Attendees must pre-register by calling Cephas’ district office at (215) 879-6625. Media is invited to attend . Read more

 

House advances Klunk, Cephas bill to protect workers from sexual harassment

(May 05, 2021)

HARRISBURG, May 5 – To further protect workers from sexual harassment and retribution from exposing such behavior, the House today unanimously approved bipartisan legislation sponsored by state Reps. Kate Klunk, R-Hanover, and Morgan Cephas, D-Phila. Specifically, H.B. 938 would forbid employers from requiring employees and potential employees to sign nondisclosure agreements related to sexual harassment as a stipulation of employment. This would ensure workers who face sexual harassment in the workplace can exercise their voice to report such egregious offenses they may suffer at the hands of a co-worker or a superior. Employees and employers would still be able to voluntarily enter into such agreements. The bill also would clarify that nondisclosure agreements formed during the hiring process are to be considered involuntary, while those created during the settlement of a harassment case may be considered voluntary. “Far too often victims of workplace sexual harassment are dissuaded from coming forward with allegations because of nondisclosure agreements that essentially end investigations into these offenses before they even start,” Klunk said. “This leads to a culture that prevents justice from being served and aggressors being held accountable.” “Too many Pennsylvanians have had their sense of comfort and livelihoods ruined because they were victimized in the workplace and faced further abuse for speaking out. We Read more

 

PLBC outlines legislative agenda for systemic equity

(May 05, 2021)

HARRISBURG, May 5 – State House members of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus and supporters today outlined their legislative agenda for systemic equity at a Capitol news conference. Members spoke about bills that would resolve bias, create diversity and provide inclusion, bridging the racial divide and inequities in legislation, state government agencies and health care. “This agenda is a road map for changing the way we deliver services, distribute resources and otherwise do business in the Commonwealth in all matters so that everyone, regardless of the color of their skin, gender, or Zip code, will have the same access and the same expectation as residents of Pennsylvania,” said PLBC Chair and state Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Phila. “The inequities in health care, housing and employment that were exacerbated by the pandemic are not new. They are systemic and often rooted in generations of racism. To address these systemic inequities, we have to remove stigmas, address implicit bias, and invest in systemic equity in ways that provide fair and equitable access to wealth, health, safety and more. We cannot continue doing things as we’ve done in the past and expect the outcome to be different. I have said that before, it still holds true and will continue to be true until we make substantial changes. We won’t relent until we see these changes.” “I truly appreciate the leadership of PLCB Chairwoman Bullock to keep us Read more

 

PA Women’s Health Caucus Responds to Today’s Dangerous Anti-Abortion Hearing in the House Health Committee.

(May 04, 2021)

We thank those Representatives on the committee who have continually stood up for reproductive justice throughout these hearings, including our own co-chair Representative Morgan Cephas, and one of the WHC’s founders, Representative Dan Frankel. Read more

 

Frankel: Stop the Attacks on Science

(May 04, 2021)

“The accusations discussed today are abhorrent, and fortunately, they are untrue. Tissue donation is carefully regulated, and the process is entirely set up to help improve and protect human life. If an organization breaks the rules, there are, appropriately, consequences in place." Read more

 

Cephas seeks to establish Behavioral Health Crisis Response Units in Pa.

(Apr 26, 2021)

HARRISBURG, April 26 – On the six-month anniversary of the tragic death of Walter Wallace, Jr, state Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila. announced that she is working to introduce legislation that would require police departments across the commonwealth to establish Behavioral Health Crisis Response Units that could respond to emergency calls in lieu of or as a complement to law enforcement when the nature of the call is related to a behavioral health issue. Cephas’ first introduced the idea immediately following the police shooting death of Walter Wallace Jr., a 27-year-old West Philadelphia man, whose family had called 911 because he was experiencing a mental breakdown in October 2020. Responding officers fired 14 rounds at him, killing him, while he was standing in the street holding a knife. “Today, as we remember the life of our neighbor – a father, son, and friend – we must check in and ensure we continue the work,” said Cephas. “When someone calls 911 because their family member or neighbor is experiencing a mental health crisis, is battling addiction, or dealing with homelessness, they shouldn’t have to fear that the person they want to help will be killed by police. “Just a week after the verdict was announced in the police involved killing of George Floyd, we are hopeful that by making the right investments and demanding accountability, we can make our communities safer for all.” Cephas said her Read more

 

Op-Ed: Shelve the theatrics and address real issues affecting Pa. women and children

(Apr 23, 2021)

Improving women’s health care doesn’t require news conferences designed to parrot tired and untrue talking points. To make a positive difference for all women and children of Pennsylvania, let’s instead focus our energy and attention on evidence-based policies that address bona fide issues and move Pennsylvania forward. Read more

 

Cephas announces $325K state grant for roadway safety at the Cobbs Creek Golf Course

(Apr 21, 2021)

HARRISBURG, April 21 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., today announced that a $325,000 state grant has been awarded to the Cobbs Creek Foundation to improve roadway safety along two public roads leading to the Cobbs Creek Golf Course, located in her legislative district. The announcement comes days after Cephas announced a $3 million state grant from the Multimodal Transportation Fund awarded to Saint Joseph’s University for increased safety for students, commuters and residents on and near the campus. Cephas, who represents the 192 nd Legislative District in West Philadelphia, said the latest funding, which also comes from the Multimodal Transportation Fund, will be used for primary improvements to two tunnels for golf carts to access both sides of the course on Lansdowne Avenue and Cardington Road. Other improvements include a raised crosswalk with a traffic signal at the driveway entrances to the clubhouse, installing speed bumps, stormwater culverts with associated drainage and guiderails along Lansdowne Avenue and Cardington Road. “In just days, our community has received a total of $3.3 million in state funding — all of which will be used toward improvements in our community,” Cephas said. “Residents and visitors will soon be able to safely enjoy the recreations and accessibility of the Saint Joseph’s University and the Cobbs Creek Golf Course.” Read more

 

Pedestrian safety at St. Joseph’s enhanced by PennDOT funding, Daley and Cephas announce

(Apr 20, 2021)

"I am proud to see this funding be used to bring this project to fruition. The safety of countless pedestrians relies on it.” Read more

 

Cephas, Klunk advance bipartisan sexual harassment bill through Labor and Industry Committee

(Apr 20, 2021)

HARRISBURG, April 20 – During the 20th anniversary of Sexual Assault Awareness Month and falling in line with this year’s theme of “Creating Safe Spaces for All Communities,” state Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., today announced that her bill that would bolster protections against workplace sexual harassment for all employees in the commonwealth was unanimously approved by the PA House Labor & Industry Committee. House Bill 938, a bipartisan bill Cephas co-introduced with state Rep. Kate A. Klunk, R-York, would ban the requirement of nondisclosure agreements related to sexual harassment as a condition of getting a job. The bill, however, would not prohibit nondisclosure agreements if both parties voluntarily agree to participate. The bill also would clarify that nondisclosure agreements formed during the hiring process are to be considered involuntary, while those created during the settlement of a harassment case may be considered voluntary. Cephas and Klunk pointed to a range of social media activism campaigns (#MeToo, #ItsOnUs, #TimesUp and #EndRapeOnTheNightShift) that have raised awareness of widespread workplace sexual harassment in various career fields, and the devastating retaliation victims have faced for speaking out. “Recent events that have spurred these key movements shine a light on how under-protected Pennsylvanians are from workplace sexual harassment. However, our bill would provide all employees across our Read more

 

Gainey, Cephas legislation aims to combat false reports to law enforcement

(Apr 15, 2021)

In response to increased calls to law enforcement over crimeless activities, state Reps. Ed Gainey, D-Allegheny, and Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., plan to introduce two bills that seek to put an end to false reports of crime to law enforcement. Read more

 

Cephas applauds Biden administration for highlighting national Black Maternal Health Week, reintroduces maternal health package

(Apr 13, 2021)

In an effort to raise awareness of the maternal health disparities in communities of color, President Joe Biden signed a proclamation to officially recognize this week as Black Maternal Health Week, an action applauded by Rep. Morgan Cephas, D- Phila. Read more

 

Women’s Health Caucus: Facts matter in discussion about abortion

(Apr 08, 2021)

“In an ideal setting, hearings like these would be better utilized to help usher critical legislation that places safety and body autonomy at the pinnacle all the while focusing on saving lives and bolstering access to quality health care.” Read more

 

Lack of internet access widens Pa. digital divide; House Democratic Policy Committee focuses on needs and solutions

(Mar 30, 2021)

HARRISBURG, March 30 – The House Democratic Policy Committee today hosted a virtual public hearing that challenged public officials to reimagine the education system to ensure quality, reliable internet access and equipment for students as part of an educators’ toolbox. The hearing, hosted by state Representatives Jordan Harris, Pam Snyder, Peter Schweyer, Morgan Cephas, brought together educators and communications experts on what is needed to help create a bridge that closes the digital divide. “Ultimately, a public-private partnership and investment will be needed to overcome the digital divide. Quality internet access and devices are an essential part of a quality 21st century education and Pennsylvania students and educators should be set up for success,” Policy Chairman Ryan Bizzarro said. Hillary Linardopoulos, legislative representative for the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers; Lawrence Jones, CEO of Richard Allen Prep; and Dr. Robin Cooper from the Philadelphia Principals Union, shared their experience throughout the pandemic and the challenges their educators faced before and throughout the pandemic in keeping children and educators connected for a quality education. Cooper noted broadband access and educational supports have a direct impact on student opportunities and career potential. “At the start of the pandemic, there were about 3,000 Allentown School District households that didn’t have access to the Read more

 

Bridging the digital divide focus of Tuesday and Wednesday House Democratic Policy Committee hearings

(Mar 29, 2021)

HARRISBURG, March 29 -- Education, employment and healthcare outcomes are relying more on internet connectivity and access and the House Democratic Policy Committee is hosting two hearings to explore the impacts on Pennsylvania’s economy. The first hearing—with a focus on education – will be held at 11 a.m. Tuesday, March 30 and hosted by state Reps. Jordan Harris, Pam Snyder, Peter Schweyer and Morgan Cephas. The second hearing will be held at 1 p.m. Wednesday, March 31 and hosted by Rep. Rob Matzie, Democratic chairman of the Consumer Affairs Committee. The latter hearing will examine creating a more connected state for an improved business climate and healthcare access. The public and media are encouraged to watch online at www.pahouse.com/policy . Media inquiries may be submitted via email to policy@pahouse.net . Read more

 

Frankel, Women’s Health Caucus decry focus on abortion bans

(Mar 18, 2021)

Hearings a missed opportunity to improve Pa.’s maternal health Read more

 

Cephas introduces legislation to combat maternal mortality, calls on state leaders to pursue provision in American Rescue Plan

(Mar 18, 2021)

HARRISBURG, March 18 – Continuing her efforts to quell maternal morbidity, state Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., has recently introduced several bills that would make maternal health care in Pennsylvania more equitable across racial and socioeconomic lines. The bill introductions come in the wake of the U.S. House of Representatives passing the American Rescue Plan, which allows states to extend Medicaid to up to 1-year postpartum. Cephas, who serves as vice-chair of the PA Women’s Health Caucus and treasurer of the Women’s Caucus, has been at the forefront in the fight to combat maternal mortality across Pennsylvania, said health care is the most disparate it has ever been, with race-based and class-based implicit biases and discrimination that results in compounding the effects of iniquity felt by marginalized and underserved patients. “Women of color are still three times as likely to die giving birth than other women -- this is racism in medicine at play and it’s unacceptable,” Cephas said. “Access to quality and affordable care should never be based on skin color, income or Zip code, and my legislation would help abolish these discriminatory practices that result in highly fatal outcomes from our medical systems. I look forward to working with my colleagues and the administration to ensure that we take advantage of the opportunity presented to us so that Pennsylvania’s women have access to Read more

 

Why do Black American women die having babies?
Jun 03, 2021

Cephas announces $250K Commonwealth Financing Authority grant awarded to Wynnefield Overbrook Revitalization Cooperation
May 28, 2021

Cephas, Davis, Jones, Mizgorski unveil Dignity for Incarcerated Women Act
May 26, 2021

Cephas to host youth town hall, summer employment workshop
May 19, 2021

House advances Klunk, Cephas bill to protect workers from sexual harassment
May 05, 2021

PLBC outlines legislative agenda for systemic equity
May 05, 2021

PA Women’s Health Caucus Responds to Today’s Dangerous Anti-Abortion Hearing in the House Health Committee.
May 04, 2021

Frankel: Stop the Attacks on Science
May 04, 2021

Cephas seeks to establish Behavioral Health Crisis Response Units in Pa.
Apr 26, 2021

Op-Ed: Shelve the theatrics and address real issues affecting Pa. women and children
Apr 23, 2021

Cephas announces $325K state grant for roadway safety at the Cobbs Creek Golf Course
Apr 21, 2021

Pedestrian safety at St. Joseph’s enhanced by PennDOT funding, Daley and Cephas announce
Apr 20, 2021

Cephas, Klunk advance bipartisan sexual harassment bill through Labor and Industry Committee
Apr 20, 2021

Gainey, Cephas legislation aims to combat false reports to law enforcement
Apr 15, 2021

Cephas applauds Biden administration for highlighting national Black Maternal Health Week, reintroduces maternal health package
Apr 13, 2021

Women’s Health Caucus: Facts matter in discussion about abortion
Apr 08, 2021

Lack of internet access widens Pa. digital divide; House Democratic Policy Committee focuses on needs and solutions
Mar 30, 2021

Bridging the digital divide focus of Tuesday and Wednesday House Democratic Policy Committee hearings
Mar 29, 2021

Frankel, Women’s Health Caucus decry focus on abortion bans
Mar 18, 2021

Cephas introduces legislation to combat maternal mortality, calls on state leaders to pursue provision in American Rescue Plan
Mar 18, 2021