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Cephas addresses gun violence at her State of the 192nd Town Hall

Cephas to join powerful House Appropriations Committee; new means to tackle Philadelphia’s poverty rate

(Jan 28, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 28 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., today announced that she was appointed to serve on several key House committees to provide and better serve her district for the 2019-20 legislative session. Cephas was selected to serve on the Appropriations; Labor and Industry; Aging and Older Adult Services; and Agriculture and Rural Affairs committees. “To understand a government’s priorities, you have to look at where it spends its money,” she said. “As a legislator from Philadelphia County, my top priority always will be advancing policies to help tackle our 26 percent poverty rate. As a member of the Appropriations Committee, I will be laser focused on our investments in workforce development, the tools we are using to spur economic growth across the region, and how we are ensuring that working families can obtain family sustaining jobs. “I’m thrilled to use my new influential committee assignment and experience from my first term in office to better serve Philadelphia and the commonwealth as a whole. These committees have a direct impact on everyone in my district and Pennsylvania. Many of my constituents have voiced concerns about the direction of our government, and I plan to fight for the people first above all else.” Cephas added that while all of these committees are crucial to better serving her district, the Labor and Industry and Appropriations committees specifically enhance her mission to help Read more

 

Cephas to host Youth Employment Workshops

(Jan 24, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 24 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., and her staff will be available to assist young constituents, those 14 to 18 years old, with information on applying for local summer jobs, local union apprenticeships and state government-related programs. “It’s always a pleasure to get to meet with young leaders and connect them with opportunities to learn, grow and earn some income along the way,” Cephas said. “These workshops are great for our local businesses, but also for helping college-bound kids apply for state-related grants and programs at four-year colleges. There’s something here for everyone, no matter what path they may want to take.” The workshops will be held: 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Jan. 31, Shepard Recreation Center, 5700 Haverford Ave., 19131. 10 a.m. to noon Feb. 9, Sweet Union Baptist Church 1536 N. 59th St., 19151. 10 a.m. to noon Feb. 16, Rose Playground 1300 N. 75 th St., 19151. 10 a.m. to noon Feb. 23, Tustin Recreation Center, 5900 W. Columbia Ave., 19151. Workshop topics and services include how to apply for state and local required documents such as birth certificates and state identification; how to apply for a work permit; Philadelphia labor union Apprenticeship program information and exam preparation; Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency and other state-related grant programs for four-year colleges; mock interviews and resume reviews. Parents and/or guardians must Read more

 

Cephas Moving Philadelphia Forward

(Jan 17, 2019)

Pa. state Rep. Morgan Cephas was a part of the Philadelphia House Delegation announcement of their legislative platform to improve the city. Cephas spoke about the need for healthcare reform, job creation and alleviating the deep poverty and through much of Philadelphia. Read more

 

Philadelphia Delegation announces its legislative platform for 2019-20

(Jan 16, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 16 – State Rep. Jason Dawkins, chairman of the Philadelphia House Delegation, along with delegation members today announced their legislative agenda during a news conference at the state Capitol. The delegation said its top priorities for working toward a better Philadelphia include investing in education and schools, criminal justice reform, health care for all, strengthening commercial coordinators, and alternative energy methods. "We are joining forces to work as one unit for the betterment of all Philadelphians, and that begins with fighting for what our constituents need the most,” Dawkins said. "We are also focused on making sure that everyone gets a fair shot and equal treatment." “Last session we worked in bipartisan fashion to get clean slate legislation signed into law and bring real criminal justice reform to those who need it,” said Rep. Jordan Harris, the Democratic Whip. “Now, we must continue fighting for further reform to reduce recidivism and allow Pennsylvanians who have paid their debit to society to pursue a productive path to citizenry.” “For too long our criminal justice system has been an injustice system for the mentally ill, the poor, and people of color,” said Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta. “While we’ve made progress, our prisons remain overcrowded, inmates mistreated, and mental health problems ignored. I stand with my Philadelphia colleagues to address Read more

 

Check out my 2019 winter newsletter

(Jan 11, 2019)

From my priorities for the new legislative session to recapping our accomplishments in 2018, it's all in our 2019 Winter Newsletter. Read more

 

PLBC statement on Mummer’s Parade

(Jan 03, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 3 – Members of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus released the following statements after seeing reports of racist behavior at the Mummer’s Parade: “The issue we are seeing here is a history of controversial characters and portrayals,” said state Rep. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila, chairman of the PLBC. “The actions of those involved was intended as a form of comedy, but many viewers on the outside of the event believe it was in poor taste. We want to work on educating the public about how these actions can affect those around them, and how we might be able to better work for the future by working together on this parade as a whole community. The PLBC will continue our fight against acts of racism and fight for non-discriminatory legislation that updates the laws to help combat racism and racist behavior. Even if we cannot defeat it altogether, we should have better laws in place to discourage hateful practices and better educate the public.” “It doesn’t matter if it’s blackface or a black face, racial insensitivity has no place in Philadelphia,” said state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., former chairman of the PLBC and House Democratic Whip. “Sadly, this Parade has a tradition of racial insensitivity at best and racism at worst. It’s high time the sponsors and all others involved take a deliberate look at the messages being put forth by the parade. I look forward to joining other Read more

 

Cephas: Store closure devastating to local neighborhood

(Jan 03, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 3 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., said she is disheartened over the community impact following the announcement of a grocery store closing due to the city’s soda tax . “It is disappointing to see the Shoprite store along Haverford Avenue closing its doors,” Cephas said. “Not only is it a hit to the local economy and a loss of jobs in the immediate area, it will add to the already overwhelming amount of food deserts in our Middle Neighborhoods. “While there are other stores in the immediate area where people can shop, the lack of access to fresh foods and produce in the community where this Shoprite exists could become a burden for those who may be unable to get to those stores. I will work with area stakeholders and residents to bring a grocery store to the soon-to-be vacant site in an effort to benefit the community’s overall needs. “With a new legislative session underway in Harrisburg, the general assembly must work together to provide adequate funding for our schools and infrastructure needs across the commonwealth, no matter the zip code. By fairly distributing sufficient appropriations for education and recreation centers, municipalities and cities, including Philadelphia, would not need to create alternative means of funding, such as a soda tax, which could ultimately have a devastating impact on businesses and our neighborhoods.” Read more

 

Senior prescription program expanded to help more people

(Oct 23, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 23 – Thousands of additional Pennsylvania seniors will be able to receive help paying for their prescription medicines thanks to a new state law. Act 87, signed into law today, increases seniors’ access to the state’s prescription drug assistance program (PACENET) by raising the program’s income limits to keep pace with rising costs. The law increases the maximum income limit for PACENET to $27,500 for individuals and $35,500 for married couples. In addition, the new law allows pharmacists to fill partial prescriptions so PACE/PACENET participants’ refills can be synchronized for the same day. It’s estimated this expansion will allow for an additional 17,000 seniors to be eligible for PACENET statewide. The new law supports the priority of putting people first in the House Democrats’ Plan for Pennsylvania , which focuses on working together to build a stronger Pennsylvania through good jobs, affordable health care, quality schools and a fair economy. Read more

 

Cephas secures $39,000 planning grant to revitalize the Tustin Recreation Center

(Sep 18, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 18 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., today announced a $39,100 grant will jumpstart efforts to revitalize the Tustin Recreation Center and address its deteriorating conditions. The Commonwealth Financing Authority approved the Greenways, Trails and Recreation Program funding to hire a consulting team to complete two assessment phases: Phase 1 : Consists of site and building analysis and program assessment. Phase 2 : Includes design alternatives, illustrative site plan alternatives, prepare cost estimates for proposed improvements, and propose phasing options for proposed improvements. "The Tustin Recreation Center provides a fun and safe multigenerational space for area residents to play, exercise and congregate, which is essential in building a strong neighborhood,” Cephas said. "The funding ultimately will help develop a master plan, driven by residents who will determine and prioritize the structural improvements needed to keep the center a thriving asset for our community." "This grant is a long-awaited chance for the community to get involved in what happens here and provides a great opportunity to enhance our facilities as well as our programming," said Sheldon Robinson, Tustin Advisory Council president. "This historic recreation center is the place where generations of Overbrook and West Philadelphia families call home, and we look forward to carrying on the tradition that is Tustin Read more

 

PLBC applauds state funding for gun violence reduction initiatives

(Sep 07, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 7 – Members of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus applauded the announcement made today by Gov. Tom Wolf that more than $1.5 million in funding will be allocated across the commonwealth to help reduce gun violence. "The crisis created by the illegal gun violence epidemic cannot be averted without those on the frontlines of this fight having access to the resources and tools needed to do the work of healing those affected,” said state Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., PLBC chairman. “The PLBC is proud to stand with Governor Wolf as we begin to ensure that our communities have the support and tools needed to begin to address this public health crisis." “The PLBC has been working hard to address gun violence in our community as a public health issue, because we understood that resources follow public health concerns. Today’s grant is a result of our collective work with Governor Wolf, city officials, and local advocates,” said state Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Phila., vice chair of the PLBC. “As a member of the School Safety and Security Committee, I hope to bring more resources to Philadelphia to address gun violence in and around our schools.” “It is no secret there is a gun violence epidemic in the commonwealth. From Philadelphia to Pittsburgh and all points in between, shootings are taking lives one or two at a time, destroying our communities and families,” said state Rep. Chris Read more

 

8/7/18 – Janus vs. AFSCME Decision’s Impact on Women of Color – Philadelphia

(Aug 10, 2018)

Materials from House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing hosted by State Rep. Morgan Cephas. Read more

 

Cephas, Policy Committee discuss court ruling on unions, impact on women

(Aug 07, 2018)

PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 7 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., and the Women and Girls of Color Subcommittee of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, today hosted a House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing at the District 1199 Union Hall on a U.S. Supreme Court ruling and its impact on women. Cephas was joined by Policy Committee Chairman Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, and state legislators from across the commonwealth. The committee discussed how the Janus vs. AFSCME Council 31 decision threatens worker rights and all working families, particularly women of color. Cephas said labor unions have helped women of all backgrounds close gaps in pay and career advancement. Letting government workers benefit from union representation without paying union fees would make many institutions across the country smaller and poorer in the next few years. “My mother raised four young girls on her own and struggled with her wage, leave and her rights. She couldn’t fight the battles on her own, but her union was there for her,” Cephas said. “Unions lifted my mother and other women out of poverty. They were a vehicle for women of color to gain access to the middle class. It is our duty to continue the fight against powerful corporate special interests.” Sturla added, “The U.S. Supreme Court ruling dealt a blow to unions, but that will not stop the effort of helping working people in Pennsylvania obtain health care benefits, safe working Read more

 

Cephas to host Policy Committee hearing about Janus vs. AFSCME ruling’s impact on women of color Tuesday in Philadelphia

(Aug 02, 2018)

PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 2 – As part of the House Democratic Caucus’ Plan4PA, state Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., and the Women and Girls of Color Subcommittee of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus will host a House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing on how a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision on unions impacts women of color. The hearing will be held at noon Tuesday, Aug. 7 at District 1199 Union Hall, 1319 Locust St., 19107. Cephas requested the hearing to discuss the Janus vs. AFSCME case and how the justices’ ruling against unions affects women of color. According to the National Women’s Law Center, Women represented by a union are paid 15 percent more than those who are not, and women of color represented by unions are closer to closing the wage gap with black women making 77 cents and Latina women making 75 cents to every dollar white men make. Cephas will be joined by state legislators from across the state, including Policy Committee Chairman Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster. The current agenda is: 12 p.m. Welcome and opening remarks 12:10 p.m. Panel One: • Amal Bass, staff attorney, Women’s Law Project • Representative from POWER 12:40 p.m. Panel of union leaders: • Chris Woods, executive vice president, District 1199C • Bonnee Breese Bentum, board member, Philadelphia Federation of Teachers • Lynn Read more

 

Cephas announces fresh produce grant for local school

(Jul 31, 2018)

PHILADELPHIA, July 31 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Philadelphia, today announced that Lewis C. Cassidy Academics Plus School has been awarded more than $19,000 in grants to provide fresh fruits and vegetables to students during the school day. Lewis C. Cassidy Academics Plus School, located in Cephas’ legislative district, was one of 200 Pennsylvania elementary schools to qualify for the grant. Cephas said 40 different schools throughout Philadelphia County received funding through this program. To qualify, a school must have a free and reduced meal eligibility of 50 percent or more. The schools are required to spend a majority of the grant on purchasing fresh fruits and vegetables while also offering nutrition education to students and their families. “I am elated to see local schools receive this vital funding,” said Cephas. “Our children’s education is of great importance to me, and by providing the necessary tools needed to have our students performing at their highest capacity, we are helping to shape the future of our communities.” Funding is provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, and was first introduced in Pennsylvania in 2004. Now active across the nation, the program works to impact a student’s overall healthy by expanding school variety of fruits and vegetables, providing healthier food choices in school lunches and teaching students to make healthier Read more

 

Governor adopts Cephas’ recommendation to enhance Workforce Development Board

(Jul 12, 2018)

PHILADELPHIA, July 12 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., today commended Gov. Tom Wolf for signing Executive Order 2018-04 to enhance workforce development efforts in the commonwealth by adding the Department of Corrections as a member of the Pennsylvania Workforce Development Board (PA WDB). With the executive order, the WDB also becomes the leading entity for the coordination among the public, private sectors and multiple state agencies to provide the most effective services and job training strategies. “Finding employment after being incarcerated is an important step in the reintegration process. In fact, lack of employment is still a leading factor in recidivism,” Cephas said. “I’m honored the Governor took my recommendation to include the Department of Corrections on the board to increase access to apprenticeships and job training to help returning citizens get the skills for meaningful employment.” Cephas has been working with the PA WDB and stakeholders across the commonwealth to build a strong workforce development system aligned with state education policies and economic development goals. As a chairwoman of the Women and Girls of Color Subcommittee and member of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus , she has introduced legislation to fix many inefficiencies and inequities of the state’s criminal justice system, focusing on collaboration as a path to create a sustainable reentry process. “Across the Read more

 

Cephas returns to the University of Virginia for leadership program

(Jul 10, 2018)

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va., July 10 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., announced today that she has been selected to participate in the 2018 Emerging Leaders Program, sponsored by the State Legislative Leaders Foundation and the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. “As leaders during these trying times, we must build a coalition across the aisle and across the country to ensure we are making strategic investments in our communities and moving our states forward,” Cephas said. “Programs like Emerging Leaders are critical to examine best practices and exchange insights on public policy and issues we may have in common.” This prestigious program is held every year on the campus of the University of Virginia for a select group of state legislators who have been nominated by their respective speakers of the House, presidents of the Senate or minority leaders, based on their qualities and leadership—integrity, compassion, intelligence, vision and common sense. The training will be held from Monday, July 9 through Thursday, July 12 in Charlottesville. The goal of the program is to inspire leaders to continued careers in public service. Class discussions will examine qualities and characteristics of leadership including: ethical leadership, the art of compromise and coalition building, and the philosophical underpinnings of representative democracy. Stephen G. Lakis, president of the State Legislative Leaders Read more

 

Cephas Cracking Down on Squatters

(Jun 22, 2018)

Progress is being made in a push by Pa. state Rep. Morgan Cephas to crack down on squatters. Cephas explains the problem and how this legislation will help protect property owners in middle neighborhoods. Read more

 

Cephas applauds legislative movement to crack down on ‘squatters’ in middle neighborhoods

(Jun 22, 2018)

HARRISBURG, June 22 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas is applauding the movement of legislation this week that would address illegal trespassers and give law enforcement the proper tools necessary to crack down on violators. “Squatting is a growing issue that’s putting the safety of our middle neighborhoods at risk,” said Cephas, D-Phila. “At this point, there are questions as to who is authorized to issue punishment for violators. This bill (H.B.1931) would clear up the confusion and give police departments the legal authority to enforce the law.” The House passed this legislation, authored by Rep. John Taylor, R-Phila., that would give officers the right to remove a person from a residential property if there’s probable cause. The officer would first have to allow enough time to present evidence before acting, such as providing a signed affidavit from the property owner stating the person is trespassing. “Too often squatter situations turn into a ‘he said, she said’ fiasco, where it’s hard to prove who’s lying and ends up just being a costly legal nightmare for property owners,” Cephas explained. “This is a bipartisan solution that would focus on uncovering the truth, hold violators accountable and keep our communities safe.” The bill is headed to the Senate for consideration. ### Read more

 

Legislative package would help incarcerated women, parents in Pa.

(Jun 21, 2018)

HARRISBURG, June 21 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., and colleagues today unveiled a package of legislation that would help incarcerated women and parents in Pennsylvania. "I'm glad that we're having vital, bipartisan discussions about criminal justice reform. I think it's crucial for those discussions to include women and girls of color," said Cephas, chairwoman of the Women and Girls of Color Subcommittee of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus. "Women are the fastest-growing segment of the incarcerated population. Since 1985, the rate of incarcerated women has increased at nearly double the male rate. The ACLU reports that African-American women and women of color are significantly overrepresented in the prison population. African-American women are 30 percent of incarcerated women in the United States, but only 13 percent of the female population. In addition, Hispanic women are 16 percent of incarcerated women but only 11 percent of all women in the U.S." Cephas plans to introduce a bill to create a Women and Girls Committee within the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency. "I believe this would aid the commission in its work as it specifically relates to research and programs that will have a direct impact on women and girls." Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., chairman of the PLBC, said, “This package of legislation would help support incarcerated women in the commonwealth’s prison Read more

 

Cephas: Removing Local Control Hurts Workers

(Jun 13, 2018)

Pa. state Rep. Morgan Cephas is fighting back against anti-worker special interests that want to strip paid sick leave & equal pay from the working class, unravelling all of the progress that has made in Pennsylvania to combat workplace discrimination. Read more

 

Cephas to join powerful House Appropriations Committee; new means to tackle Philadelphia’s poverty rate
Jan 28, 2019

Cephas to host Youth Employment Workshops
Jan 24, 2019

Cephas Moving Philadelphia Forward
Jan 17, 2019

Philadelphia Delegation announces its legislative platform for 2019-20
Jan 16, 2019

Check out my 2019 winter newsletter
Jan 11, 2019

PLBC statement on Mummer’s Parade
Jan 03, 2019

Cephas: Store closure devastating to local neighborhood
Jan 03, 2019

Senior prescription program expanded to help more people
Oct 23, 2018

Cephas secures $39,000 planning grant to revitalize the Tustin Recreation Center
Sep 18, 2018

PLBC applauds state funding for gun violence reduction initiatives
Sep 07, 2018

8/7/18 – Janus vs. AFSCME Decision’s Impact on Women of Color – Philadelphia
Aug 10, 2018

Cephas, Policy Committee discuss court ruling on unions, impact on women
Aug 07, 2018

Cephas to host Policy Committee hearing about Janus vs. AFSCME ruling’s impact on women of color Tuesday in Philadelphia
Aug 02, 2018

Cephas announces fresh produce grant for local school
Jul 31, 2018

Governor adopts Cephas’ recommendation to enhance Workforce Development Board
Jul 12, 2018

Cephas returns to the University of Virginia for leadership program
Jul 10, 2018

Cephas Cracking Down on Squatters
Jun 22, 2018

Cephas applauds legislative movement to crack down on ‘squatters’ in middle neighborhoods
Jun 22, 2018

Legislative package would help incarcerated women, parents in Pa.
Jun 21, 2018

Cephas: Removing Local Control Hurts Workers
Jun 13, 2018