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House Democratic Policy Committee-PA Legislative Black Caucus to hold sixth hearing on Police Reform Friday in Capitol

(Sep 22, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 22 – State Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, and state Rep. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila., announced today that the House Democratic Policy Committee and the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus will hold its sixth hearing on police reform and community solutions. Read more

8/20/20 – Police Reform - Harrisburg

(Aug 20, 2020)

Materials from a public hearing held jointly with the House Democratic Policy Committee in the Capitol and co-chaired by State Rep. Patty Kim. Read more

8/19/20 – Police Reform - Harrisburg

(Aug 19, 2020)

Materials from a public hearing held jointly with the House Democratic Policy Committee in the Capitol and co-chaired by State Rep. Ed Gainey. Read more

House Democratic Policy Committee, PA Legislative Black Caucus to hold fifth hearing on Police Reform Thursday in Capitol

(Aug 18, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Aug. 18 –State Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, and State Rep. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila., announced today that the House Democratic Policy Committee and the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus will hold its fifth hearing Thursday on police reform and community solutions. Requested by state Rep. Patty Kim, D-Dauphin, HDPC Chairman Sturla and PLBC Chairman Kinsey said this hearing will focus on the Harrisburg region. The hearing will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday, Aug. 20 in Room G-50 Irvis Office Building in Harrisburg. The media and public are urged to watch the livestream at www.pahouse.com/live . Testifiers and members will participate in-person and remotely. Testifiers will include: Brenton Lipscomb, community activist, Black Lives Matter Kevin Dolphin, founder and CEO, Breaking the Chainz Inc. Jonathan Lee, associate professor and professor-in-charge of Criminal Justice Program, Penn State Harrisburg, School of Public Affairs Stephen Bishop, senior associate, Juvenile Justice Strategy Group at The Annie E. Casey Foundation Juan Colon, national director of Opioids and Illegal Drug Solutions, SAS Institute Following the hearing, testimony and full hearing video will be posted at www.pahouse.com/policycommittee . ### Read more

House Democratic Policy Committee/PA Legislative Black Caucus to hold fourth hearing on Police Reform Wednesday in Capitol

(Aug 17, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Aug. 17 – State Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, and state Rep. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila, announced today that the House Democratic Policy Committee and the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus will hold a fourth hearing on police reform. HDPC Chair Sturla and PLBC Chair Kinsey said the hearing will focus on the Pittsburgh region. The hearing will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 19 in Room G-50 Irvis Office Building in Harrisburg. The media and public are urged to watch the livestream at www.pahouse.com/live . Testifiers will participate remotely while members participate in-person and remotely. Testifiers will include: Michelle Kenney , mother of Antwon Rose and director of the Antwon Rose II Foundation. Jasiri X , co-founder and CEO, 1Hood Media. Rose Price , community activist. Tameka Hatcher , educational outreach/police training program coordinator, Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission. Alphonse Gerhardstein , board member, National Police Accountability Project. Following the hearing, testimonies and full hearing video will be posted at www.pahouse.com/policycommittee . ### Read more

Kinsey, Webster and PLBC members amplify call to remove Montco Commissioner Joe Gale

(Aug 13, 2020)

JEFFERSONVILLE, Aug. 13 – State Reps. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila., chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus; and Joe Webster, D-Montgomery, along with PLBC members state Reps. Margo Davidson, D-Delaware, and Patty Kim, D-Dauphin, today participated in a “Free from Hate” news conference led by PA Women Rise at the West Norriton Municipal Center. The group’s “Free from Hate” platform was centered around increased demands for the ousting of Montgomery County Commissioner Joseph Gale for his comments earlier this summer referring to people involved in the Black Lives Matter movement as terrorists. To further amplify their demands, the state legislators unveiled Webster’s H.R. 920 , which would impeach Gale and which Webster introduced in response to the offensive statement. “In our quest to free our communities of hate, we must condemn actors like Commissioner Gale who used his official capacity to perpetuate hate by vilifying residents’ calls for equality and justice,” Kinsey said. “Instead of being an active agent of change in upholding those calls, Gale chose to side with the powers of oppression. His actions demonstrate his complacency with injustice, making him unfit to serve the public, and for that, Gale must be removed immediately.” Concurring with Kinsey, Webster acknowledged the solidarity among lawmakers and community members, and also Read more

Wheatley: Minority-owned businesses need vital help, support now

(Aug 11, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Aug. 11 – State Rep. Jake Wheatley, D-Allegheny, issued the following statement regarding urgent help needed for minority-owned businesses: “I hear the anger and frustration from my local business owners, especially those who are considered to be historically disadvantaged, for the lack of support they’ve received during the ongoing pandemic. And frankly, I don’t blame them. “Our minority-owned businesses are hurting, and they are among the most severely impacted and the ones who need help now to stay in business. These same business owners are also anticipating significant decreases in revenue in the next year. “In the last decade, minority businesses accounted for more than 50% of the 2 million new businesses nationwide, creating nearly 5 million jobs. At present, there are now more than 4 million minority-owned companies in the U.S., with annual sales totaling close to $700 billion. But despite that growth, major disparities remain when it comes to their access to capital and other business opportunities. The COVID-19 pandemic has made that disparity even worse. Furthermore, national figures show that half of black-owned businesses nationwide will close permanently due to the pandemic. “This is unacceptable. “This week, the second round of grant applications through the COVID-19 Relief PA Statewide Small Business Assistance Program were announced. This program, which is designed to support Read more

Delaware County lawmakers call for investigation into violence against Black Lives Matter supporters

(Aug 07, 2020)

HARRISBURG (August 7, 2020) – Today, a group of state lawmakers from Delaware County called for District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer to investigate violence and intimidation aimed at Black Lives Matter supporters during a march in Ridley Township on Saturday, August 1 st . State Sens. Tim Kearney and Anthony Williams as well as State Reps. Leanne Krueger, Margo Davidson, David Delloso, Brian Kirkland, and Joanna McClinton signed the letter, which details how peaceful protesters were met with violence and intimidation by a group of counter-protesters. The letter calls for Delaware County’s District Attorney to investigate the counter-protesters’ actions and the Ridley Township Police Department’s response. “I was proud to participate in the Black Lives Matter protest and stand with people of all races and all ages against systemic racism,” said Sen. Tim Kearney . “But I was disturbed by the hate and intimidation that I witnessed firsthand from counter-protesters. We are better than that. We need to make sure our community feels safe when peacefully exercising their First Amendment rights.” “I join others across our community in expressing horror that this demonstration of love and support for Black lives was met by a menacing group with a mission to taunt and intimidate peaceful protesters,” said Rep. Leanne Krueger . “Instead of actively protecting the First Amendment rights of our Read more

8/5/20 – Police Reform – Harrisburg

(Aug 05, 2020)

Materials from a public hearing held jointly with the House Democratic Policy Committee in the Capitol and co-chaired by State Rep. Carol Hill-Evans. Read more

Historically Black Colleges in Pa. awarded $3M to resume operations safely

(Aug 04, 2020)

PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 4 – State Rep. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila., and members of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, today said they are encouraged by the recent award of $3 million in federal COVID-19 relief funds to Historically Black Colleges and Universities in Pennsylvania. Kinsey leads the PLBC as its chairman. According to the lawmakers, Lincoln University was awarded $2.25 million and Cheyney University was awarded $750,000 to aid school administrators in creating safe and healthy learning environments amid the COVID-19 pandemic. “The students at Lincoln and Cheyney universities are shining examples of leadership in an otherwise difficult world,” said state Rep. Jim Roebuck, Democratic chairman of the House Education Committee and PLBC member. “This funding will help administrators to continue the excellent education and opportunities they normally provide, while doing so safely,” In late spring, Kinsey and the PLBC encouraged state and federal officials to not only recognize racial and ethnic groups in coronavirus data but also prioritize funding for Black and brown communities hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic. “While there have been longstanding racial and economic disparities in education, the COVID-19 crisis has exacerbated the danger to communities of color,” Kinsey said. “We in the PLBC were very discouraged by the disproportionate number of coronavirus cases and deaths affecting people of Read more