Bullock Honors Oliver

(Feb 05, 2018)

Pa. state Rep. Donna Bullock honors the late Hon. Frank Oliver, who recently passed away at the age of 95. Oliver served the 195th Legislative District in Philadelphia from 1973-2010, retiring as the longest serving member of the Pa. General Assembly. Oliver was a founding member of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus. Read more

 

Dawkins Explains Gerrymandering in Pa.

(Jan 24, 2018)

Pa. state Rep. Jason Dawkins breaks down a recent ruling by the state Supreme Court that threw out Pennsylvania’s congressional maps, and he explains why voters should care about this decision. Read more

 

Harris: Pa.'s Promise of a College Education

(Jan 23, 2018)

Chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus state Rep. Jordan Harris spoke about the release of a report recommending the investment of $1 billion to ensure "Pennsylvania's Promise" of affordable college tuition for qualifying students. Read more

 

Bullock: No More Torture on Young Women

(Jan 22, 2018)

In her ongoing efforts to protect young women in Pennsylvania, state Rep. Donna Bullock joined her Democratic and Republican colleagues to push legislation that would make female genital mutilation a crime in the state and raise awareness in the Commonwealth about this torturous act. Read more

 

Kinsey, Bullock call bullying a public health pandemic, introduce legislation to curtail it in Pa.

(Jan 18, 2018)

HARRISBURG, Jan. 18 – State Reps. Stephen Kinsey and Donna Bullock, both D-Phila., have introduced a bill ( H.B. 2009 ) that would require bullying education to be taught in Pennsylvania schools across all grade levels. This bill would implement uniform bullying prevention policies to address the issue at its root cause through education and intervention programs. “Following my October news conference to bring attention to the alarming incidence of bullying, I’m calling on Pennsylvania’s executive and legislative leaders to take action,” Kinsey said. “Bullying is a public health pandemic, and we must provide the resources necessary to get it under control. Our children are being hurt and dying because of perceived differences.” Both Kinsey and Bullock cite the recent surge in suicides among young people as the primary motivation for introducing the bill. Suicide remains one of the leading causes of death among Pennsylvanians between the ages of five and 24, with 222 people within that age group taking their lives in 2015 according to a state Department of Health report . Bullock, vice chairwoman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, said, “While there are policies in place that seek to prevent bullying from occurring, there are no clear policies to change the culture that consumes our children. This is especially true when it comes to cyber bullying. Having these policies posted throughout our schools is not Read more

 

PLBC honored by Barristers’ Association of Philadelphia on MLK Day

(Jan 16, 2018)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 16 – The Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus on Monday was presented with the Outstanding Organization Award by the Barristers’ Association of Philadelphia during their annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Breakfast. Each year, the Barristers’ Association of Philadelphia present this award to an organization that fights to ensure that minorities and people of color have full access to the rights and privileges guaranteed under the law. State Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., chairman of the caucus, said, “I was honored to accept the Outstanding Organization Award on behalf of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus. While we do not work for awards or recognition, it is humbling to see that our efforts to create a more fair and just society are noticed – especially from Governor Wolf, who presented us with the award. I would like to thank the Barristers’ Association for their commitment to fighting injustice and promoting awareness of the law.” State Rep. Joanna McClinton, D-Phila./Delaware, also was presented with the Outstanding Young Lawyer Award. She said, “I am beyond grateful, humbled and honored to have been awarded the Outstanding Young Lawyer Award from my Barristers’ Association family. As a proud member of the Barristers’ Association and a former public defender, my commitment to seeking justice did not end after taking office. We must continue to speak truth to power and Read more

 

Davidson: Get Guns Off Our Streets

(Dec 08, 2017)

Pa. state Rep. Margo Davidson talks about the importance of getting guns off the streets in the wake of federal efforts to allow concealed firearms cross state lines. Davidson spoke at a press conference calling for action on reducing gun violence across Pennsylvania. Read more

 

McClinton: We Need Peace on Our Streets

(Dec 08, 2017)

Pa. state Rep. Joanna McClinton held a press conference to call for attention to the gun epidemic and encourage efforts at getting guns off the streets of not only Philadelphia and surrounding neighborhoods, but across Pennsylvania. Read more

 

Southwest Philadelphia area state representatives to host joint town hall

(Dec 06, 2017)

PHILADELPHIA, Dec. 6 – State Reps. Jordan Harris, chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, and James Roebuck, both D-Phila., and Rep. Joanna McClinton, D-Phila./Delaware, today announced that they are hosting a joint town hall meeting to address the unique concerns affecting residents of southwest Philadelphia. The town hall meeting will take place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 14 at the Richard Allen Preparatory Charter School, 5151 Warren St. Harris, Roebuck and McClinton will inform residents of legislative developments in Harrisburg that impact their respective districts. There will also be a “Get to know your rep.” breakout session where residents will be able to ask their representative questions one-on-one. The meeting is open to the community, and constituents with questions should contact Harris’ district office at 215-952-3378, Roebuck’s office at 215-724-2227, or McClinton’s office at 215-748-6712. “We have debated this bill every year that I have been here, and it’s obvious that we have not been listening. Senate Bill 3 seeks to take away a decision between a woman and her doctor. Neither the House Health Committee, nor the Pennsylvania Legislature, have the right to pass legislation that clearly puts women at risk. This is true for men in particular. It’s time to listen for a change to people who are actually experts in the field.” ### Read more

 

McClinton Testifies for Phila. City Council on Bail Reform

(Dec 01, 2017)

Pa. state Rep. Joanna McClinton testifies in front of Philadelphia City Council on her efforts to reform bail and criminal justice issues in Pennsylvania. Read more

 

House Democratic Policy Committee examines bold budget innovations

(Nov 29, 2017)

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 29 – State Rep. Chris Rabb, D-Phila., today hosted his first House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing on bold budget innovations for the betterment of all Pennsylvanians. Held at Chestnut Hill College, Rabb was joined by Democratic Policy Committee Chairman Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, and several lawmakers from across the state. “We’re looking for innovative budget proposals that can help us improve economic security for all, better leverage taxpayer dollars for environmental stewardship, and ease the burdens on Pennsylvania’s criminal justice system. I am grateful to my colleagues for joining me at this forum to discuss these concepts and see where they may fit into our efforts to improve public policy,” Rabb explained. Chairman Sturla added, “Representative Rabb is an innovator and today’s discussion brought great insight into universal basic income, the municipal job guarantee, the carbon fee and various criminal justice reform proposals. Spending tax dollars in the most efficient way possible is the best approach and as we look for ways to close a budget deficit while still meeting the needs of all Pennsylvanians. I thank Representative Rabb for igniting this discussion.” Testifiers included Ioana Marinescu, Ph.D., assistant professor, University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy and Practice; Darrick Hamilton, Ph.D., associate professor of economics and urban policy, The New School; Read more

 

Bullock joins Moms Clean Air Force to discuss impact of pollution on African American families in Pa.

(Nov 29, 2017)

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 29 – State Rep. Donna Bullock, D-Phila., vice chairwoman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, today spoke at a news conference hosted by Moms Clean Air Force and Defend Our Future to discuss how toxins from the oil and gas industry disproportionately impact African-American families throughout Pennsylvania. According to a November 2017 report co-authored by the Clean Air Task Force and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, African-Americans are exposed to 38 percent more polluted air than their white counterparts and are 75 percent more likely than the average American to live in a fence-line community. Fence-line communities are communities that neighbor a company, industrial or service facility, and are directly impacted by the facility’s operation, which includes noise, door traffic, odor and chemical emissions. “The recent report authored by the Clean Air Task Force and the NAACP only confirms what we already know: the oil and gas industry is making profits at the expense of the health and well-being of historically marginalized communities,” Bullock said. “Many fence-line communities consist of low-income residents who have faced a history of discrimination on the bases of race, gender, class and disability. These companies are able burden vulnerable communities, many which have low rates of health insurance, with the deadly consequences from air pollution.” The report shows Read more

 

PLBC calls Pa. gun violence a public health crisis like opioids, demands action

(Nov 28, 2017)

HARRISBURG, Nov. 28 – Several members of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus today spoke out against the gun violence epidemic impacting communities of color across Pennsylvania. State Rep, Jordan Harris, D-Phila., chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, said, “Gun violence in Pennsylvania is a public health crisis and an epidemic, particularly for communities of color. It’s past time we start raising the level of attention on this tragic issue and demand more action. When children are being impacted, it’s time to call a state of emergency. “At this time, I’m not calling for new gun laws, but for a coordinated effort and stronger enforcements of the laws we already have in place. By providing the resources necessary, we can finally address the issue of gun violence that has traumatized our communities for far too long.” In 2016 alone, there were more than 10,000 incidents involving firearms across Pennsylvania, with nearly 5,000 of them taking place in Philadelphia. While one Pennsylvanian is murdered with a gun every 17 hours, communities of color are disproportionately impacted. African Americans and Hispanics represent nearly 79 percent of all gun homicides in Pennsylvania. From 2005 to 2014, Pennsylvania ranked fourth in the nation for the rate of gun homicides of African Americans. Although African Americans make up about 12 percent of Pennsylvania’s population, they account for more than 69 Read more

 

McClinton: No More Sexual Violence Against Women

(Nov 22, 2017)

Pa. state Rep. Joanna McClinton stood with her women colleagues in the House of Representatives to call for the elimination of sexual violence against women. McClinton sponsored a House Resolution designating November 25, 2017, as "Elimination of Violence Against Women Day" in Pennsylvania to coincide with the United Nations' "International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women." Read more

 

PLBC to host Women of Color in Business event

(Nov 21, 2017)

HARRISBURG, Nov. 21 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., announced that she will host a Women of Color in Business event from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 29 at Five Points Coffee, 5 Long Lane, Upper Darby . Cephas is the chairwoman of the PLBC Subcommittee on Women and Girls of Color. The event aims to bridge the gap between women of color and entrepreneurship. Women of color entrepreneurs will be able to hear directly from other women of color who have successfully launched businesses and learn more about the resources available to do the same. The Women of Color in Business event marks the second installment of a five part listening tour hosted by the PLBC. ### Read more

 

Harris congratulates Cheyney University on extended accreditation

(Nov 20, 2017)

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 20 – State Rep. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, has released the following statement after hearing that the Middle States Commission on Higher Education granted Cheyney University another year of accreditation: “I would like to congratulate Cheyney University for receiving another year of accreditation on its probationary status. This victory reflects the hard work of the board of governors, Council of Trustees, President Aaron Walton, faculty, staff, alumni and countless supporters. This also reflects the vision and commitment of Governor Tom Wolf. Thank you Governor Wolf for taking the steps necessary to protect the legacy of our nation’s oldest Historically Black College. “As a member of the Cheyney University task force, I have been an outspoken advocate of saving Cheyney University’s accreditation and worked on the task force’s report of recommendations for reinventing Cheyney University into a 21st-century historically black college. While this is a major victory, there is still more work to be done. We must now work towards removing Cheney University from this probationary status and ensure that it not only survives, but that it may thrive. We must build upon the legacy that started back in 1837 and has continued for the last 180 years.” ### Read more

 

PLBC hosts policy hearing, tour at SCI Muncy

(Nov 17, 2017)

HARRISBURG, Nov. 17 – State Reps. Jordan Harris and Morgan Cephas, both D-Phila., on behalf of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, today hosted a joint policy committee hearing and tour with the House Democratic Policy Committee, various stakeholders, and incarcerated women. The tour and policy hearing was held at the State Correctional Institution at Muncy. This is the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus’ and House Democratic Policy Committee’s first tour and policy hearing at a state prison facility. Advocacy and community-based organizations joined state legislators to discuss policy initiatives aimed at reducing incarceration rates, ending the school-to-prison pipeline for young girls, and improving conditions for incarcerated women. Panelists for the policy hearing included: Chloe Bohm, House Democratic Appropriations Committee, budget analyst; Joanna Visser Adjoian, Esq., Youth Sentencing & Reentry Project, co-founder and co-director; John Hargreaves, Pennsylvania Prison Society, director of volunteers; Melissa Robbins, Philadelphia Chapter of the National Organization of Women, delegate; Sameerah Shabazz, Ardella’s House, director of policy and advocacy; Farida E. Boyer, MS, Family Centered Outpatient Therapeutic Services, CEO; Peggy Sims, Sisters Returning Home, founder and executive director; and Rev. Michelle Anne Simmons, Why Not Prosper, founder and CEO. Cephas, chairwoman of the PLBC Subcommittee on Read more

 

PLBC to kick off Women and Girls of Color listening tour

(Nov 15, 2017)

HARRISBURG, Nov. 15 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., announced that the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus will kick off a five-part listening tour to better address the needs of women and girls of color across Pennsylvania. This listening tour will be spearheaded by the caucus’ Subcommittee on Women and Girls of Color. The listening tour will address such issues as criminal and juvenile justice, economic opportunity, health and wellness, education and workforce development, and overall empowerment. Cephas, chairwoman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus’ Subcommittee on Women and Girls of Color said, “Last March, I was appointed chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Women and Girls of Color. It is an honor to finally launch this initiative. This listening tour will allow us to hear directly from our most vulnerable constituency and find ways to tackle many of the issues women of color have been facing for generations.” The PLBC’s Subcommittee on Women and Girls of Color was created in March with the goal of identifying key areas where black women and women of color face the largest disparities. The listening tour will last until the celebration of Women’s History Month in March 2018. In March 2018, the subcommittee will host a keynote event to announce a legislative and policy agenda that best reflects the needs of women of color in Pennsylvania. The kickoff event is a policy committee meeting and tour set for Read more

 

House Democrats join Gov. Wolf for signing of ‘stop and go’ law

(Nov 01, 2017)

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 1 – State Reps. Jordan Harris, D-Phila., and Maria Donatucci, D-Phila./Delaware, today joined Gov. Tom Wolf, members of the state Liquor Control Board, and state and local Philadelphia legislators for the signing of a bill that increases the state’s ability to better deal with “stop and go” nuisance establishments in Philadelphia and throughout Pennsylvania. The new authority is included in a Fiscal Code bill (H.B. 674), which the House passed last week. Under the legislation, if the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board finds that a licensed establishment does not meet the seating, square footage, food or health requirements under the state Liquor Code, the LCB can suspend the license immediately. The new law also gives local government entities the power to make recommendations to the LCB to investigate establishments believed to be failing to meet code requirements. Harris, chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus, who sponsored earlier legislation to address "stop and gos," said, “In June, we began to work on legislation to increase the ability of local law enforcement agencies to stop the unscrupulous business practices of local ‘stop and go’ establishments. Today, we are able to begin the process of removing this nuisance from our community. Although this is just one of many steps needed to ensure the safety and serenity of our neighborhoods, the political will and courage displayed by Read more

 

Dawkins on Criminal Justice Reforms

(Oct 26, 2017)

Pa. state Rep. Jason Dawkins rallied a large crowd at the State Capitol in support of legislation that would institute reforms in the criminal justice system, including parole reforms and an end to mass incarceration. Read more