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Sims commends Gov. Wolf’s budget

(Feb 05, 2020)

PHILADELPHIA, Feb 5. – State Rep. Brian Sims applauded Gov. Tom Wolf’s 2020-21 state budget plan, which was unveiled Tuesday. Wolf’s budget proposal includes heavy investment in public schools and early childhood education, as well as new workforce initiatives to prepare more workers for in-demand jobs. Wolf also proposed a new scholarship program to help students in the State System of Higher Education avoid crushing student debt. “As co-chair of the PASSHE Caucus, I am very excited to see the focus that Governor Wolf has placed on education spending across the state” Sims said. “Our students deserve to learn in clean, healthy environments where they have access to the resources that they need at all levels of the education system. College students deserve to learn without going into lifechanging debt. Teachers deserve to work in buildings that won’t harm them.” Wolf’s budget plan also includes funds to implement comprehensive background checks for all gun purchases, as well as a plan to raise the minimum wage to $12 by July 1, 2020. He also urged the passage of non-discrimination legislation to give LGBTQ Pennsylvanians equal rights. “Overall, I see this budget plan as a clear statement that we are tired of inequality in Pennsylvania and we are ready to work toward a safer, fairer Commonwealth for everyone. We should be doing everything in our power to protect Read more


Sims commends Gov. Wolf’s budget plan to address toxic school conditions

(Jan 31, 2020)

PHILADELPHIA, Jan. 31 – State Rep. Brian Sims applauded Gov. Tom Wolf’s plan to include funding to address lead issues in public schools, including those in Philadelphia, in the upcoming budget. Wolf presented a series of proposed 2020-21 budget items totaling more than $1.1 billion to support reducing the risks to Pennsylvanians of lead and asbestos, and remediating existing toxins in schools, day care centers, homes and public water systems. “Our teachers and students shouldn’t have to show up every day to schools that are making them sick,” Sims said. “I am glad to see Governor Wolf prioritize safe, clean schools in his budget plan because people have been dealing with these toxic conditions for far too long. We have to make this right. “Previously, temporary solutions have been proposed and tested for this issue, but nothing has done enough to really make an impact on the people at the greatest risk for exposure to toxins,” Sims continued. “This budget proposal better reflects the sort of sweeping changes that will need to happen for our schools to be safe for every student and teachers in them.” Read more


Town Hall with Rep. Brian Sims

(Jan 22, 2020)

Join Representative Brian Sims for a Legislative Town Hall Meeting at Palumbo Rec Center on February 24th at 6:30 P.M. Representative Sims will give a legislative update on issues being discussed in Harrisburg and take any questions you may have. This event is free and is open to the public. Read more


REAL ID event

(Jan 22, 2020)

Join Representative Brian Sims for a REAL ID information seminar from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at Peirce College, located at 1420 Pine St. Representative Sims will be joined by Department of Transportation representatives to get your questions answered regarding the REAL ID process. The event will include an informational presentation by representatives from PennDOT and a question and answer portion. Feel free to bring your documents to be verified by staff before you go to the DMV. REAL IDs, which are optional, are now available through PennDOT. After Oct. 1, 2020, a REAL IDcompliant license or ID card, or a U.S. Passport or military ID, will be necessary to board a domestic commercial flight or to enter a secure federal facility. A REAL ID-compliant driver’s license has enhanced security features required by federal legislation. Read more


Sims announces $350K state grant for Center City District to improve public entrances at Penn Center Plaza

(Nov 12, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Nov. 12 – State Rep. Brian Sims announced Tuesday that a $350,000 state grant has been awarded to Center City District to improve access to regional rail, subway and trolley lines that serve southeast Pennsylvania. “We are proud of Center City Philadelphia, and we want to share this amazing place with our neighbors around the state,” Sims said. “This grant funding will improve the public’s access to a key public transportation system, which will allow for ease of travel for more of our residents, commuters and visitors. It will allow more people to visit Center City more easily.” The $350,000 grant announced today will help fund a project by Center City District that will eventually add two new stairways and an elevator head house between the two original Penn Center buildings; add a new stairway at the northwest end that will create a new, high visibility gateway to the regional rail lines at Suburban Station; remove the outdated enclosed head house on the southwest end of the plaza and enlarge the opening; relocate and upgrade the current elevator to ensure that the concourse and plaza remain fully accessible; and add new prominent gateway signage. The total project cost is estimated at $4.76 million. The grant announced Tuesday is awarded by the Commonwealth Financing Authority Multimodal Transportation Fund Program. The fund is administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Read more


Sims applauds Turning Points for Children for receiving $59,300 state grant

(Nov 01, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 1 – State Rep. Brian Sims, D-Phila., today announced that Turning Points for Children received a $59,300 grant through the Department of Community Economic Development. Funds are provided through the department’s Local Share Account Philadelphia program and will be used to convert raw space located on the first floor of the South 15 th Street building into office space, a computer lab, conference room, bathroom, and a location for youth residents to shower, wash clothing, access computers and socialize. “Turning Points has been a longstanding and vital organization providing health and social resources to vulnerable children and their families, especially providing support for children aging out of the foster care system who would otherwise not have access to these resources at all,” Sims said. “Congratulations to Turning Points for Children on receiving this grant to continue delivering its mission to youth in Philadelphia.” The Local Share Account– Philadelphia program distributes a portion of slot machine license operation fees from facilities operating in the city. Funds are available for economic development, neighborhood revitalization, community improvement and other projects in the public interest within Philadelphia. Read more


Sims hosts press conference condemning conversion therapy on minors

(Oct 23, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 23 – State Rep. Brian Sims, D-Phila., flanked by House and Senate colleagues and LGBTQ advocates, today hosted a news conference to discuss legislation that would make Pennsylvania the 19 th state to ban the dangerous practice of conversion therapy on minors, which attempts to change an individual's gender identity or sexual orientation. “It is time that the commonwealth catches up to the 18 other states and numerous municipalities in the state that already ban conversion therapy,” Sims said. “This abusive practice is causing higher rates of depression among our LGBTQ youth, and even worse, it’s coming at the expense of their lives. I am honored and encouraged by the strong group of advocates that have come together to demand we outlaw this archaic and harmful practice. Over the weeks and months to come we have the opportunity to see who in the commonwealth wants to stand with us to protect children." Sims introduced legislation (H.B. 1293) that seeks to address harms associated with conversion therapy, by prohibiting a mental health professional from engaging in this so-called treatment with minors. The practice has been universally panned by accredited medical organizations across the nation. At the news conference, advocates described the painful procedures LGBTQ minors are forced to endure during conversion therapy, such as verbal and mental abuse, and electric shock therapy. Read more


Sims to host Wednesday news conference to address prohibiting conversion therapy on minors

(Oct 21, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 21 – State Rep. Brian Sims, D-Phila., announced that he will host a news conference on banning conversion therapy on minors at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23 at the lieutenant governor’s balcony of the state Capitol . Sims will be joined by state legislators, mental health and LGBTQ advocates, including a representative from The Trevor Project, to discuss legislation that would address harms associated with conversion therapy by prohibiting mental health professionals from performing conversion therapy on an individual younger than 18. The list of speakers includes: Rep. Brian Sims. Daniel Walinsky, associate professor of instruction, Counseling Psychology Program, Temple University. Todd Snovel, executive director, Pennsylvania Commission on LGBTQ Affairs. Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta. Sen. Katie Muth. Troy Stevenson, campaign manager, 50 Bills 50 States, The Trevor Project. Media coverage is invited. Read more


10/17/19 – Comprehensive Sex Education – Philadelphia

(Oct 18, 2019)

Materials from a House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing hosted by State Rep. Brian Sims. Read more


Sims, Policy Committee look at comprehensive sex education

(Oct 17, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 17 – State Rep. Brian Sims, D-Phila., today hosted a House Democratic Policy Committee hearing at Thomas Jefferson University to explore mandating science-based, inclusive and age-appropriate sex education to help reduce teen pregnancy, cases of sexual assault and better prepare Pennsylvania’s youth to be healthy adults. “Pennsylvania students are not being fully prepared when it comes to their sexual health and well-being before graduating into adulthood. Teen births in the United States still hover at 20.3 births per 1,000 for females aged 15 to 19, people under 25 account for nearly half of new cases of sexually transmitted infections annually, and sexual violence is rampant on college campuses,” Sims said. “The abstinence-only teaching is archaic and does not address sexual, cultural or identity questions students face in their formative years. It is imperative that we implement a mandatory comprehensive and inclusive sex education curriculum that is thorough and digestible for all grade levels to educate our young people about healthy sexual behavior.” Sims has introduced H.B. 1586 that would require Pennsylvania school districts to integrate comprehensive sex education into the curriculum for all grade levels, teach contraception methods for older students and mandate affirmative sexual consent as part of the required sexual violence awareness educational program at higher education institutions. Read more


Sims to host Policy Committee hearing on comprehensive sex education Thursday in Philadelphia

(Oct 15, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 11 – State Rep. Brian Sims, D-Phila., will host a House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing on comprehensive sex education. The hearing will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 17 at Thomas Jefferson University, Foederer Auditorium, 2 nd floor -- College Building, 1015 Walnut St, 19107. The media and public are invited to attend. Sims has introduced legislation that would require school districts to incorporate age-appropriate, inclusive and science-based comprehensive sex education into the curriculum of all grade levels, including contraception methods for older students. Sims will be joined by state legislators from across the state, including Policy Chairman Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster. The current agenda is: 2:00 p.m. Welcome and opening remarks. 2:10 p.m. Panel One: Melissa Weiler Gerber , president and CEO, AccessMatters. Aletha Akers , MD, MPH,FACOG, associate professor of Pediatrics, The Craig Dalsimer Division of Adolescent Medicine. Lynette Medley , MEd, founder/CEO, No More Secrets Mind Body Spirit, Inc. Carlee Warfield , student, Downingtown STEM Academy. 2:45 p.m. Panel Two: Miciah Foster , SistahSpeak! youth project coordinator, New Voices for Reproductive Justice. Dr. Amanda Micucio , general pediatrician, Nemours duPont Pediatrics-Philadelphia. Patricia Fonzi , president and CEO, Family Health Council of Central PA. Read more


Friends of Schuylkill River Park receives $9,324 state grant

(Sep 18, 2019)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 18 – State Rep. Brian Sims announced a $9,324 grant will help Friends of Schuylkill River Park updates its Master Plan for the park. The Commonwealth Financing Authority approved the Greenways, Trails and Recreation Program funding to assist with the renovations. Friends of Schuylkill River Park will use the funding to retain a consultant team to lead an in-depth community engagement process to develop a 10 year vision for the park facilities. The total cost of the project is $10,970. The CFA was established in 2004 as an independent agency of the Department of Community and Economic Development to administer Pennsylvania's economic stimulus packages. The CFA holds fiduciary responsibility over the funding of programs and investments in Pennsylvania's economic growth. The CFA consists of seven board members: four legislative appointees and the secretaries of DCED, the Office of the Budget and Department of Banking. Read more


LGBTQ Equality Caucus condemns anti-LGBTQ legislation

(Sep 05, 2019)

As the Pennsylvania House and Senate prepare to return to session this fall, a bicameral group of lawmakers has vowed to fight anti-LGBTQ legislation that is being prepared by some House members. Read more


Sims Stands Up Against Gun Violence

(Aug 16, 2019)

Pa. state Rep. Brian Sims joined Gov. Tom Wolf, Mayor Jim Kenney, the Philadelphia Police Department, and other lawmakers in response to the recent mass shooting in Philadelphia. He explains the action needed to protect families across the commonwealth from gun violence and further bloodshed. Read more


Sims commends first responders after North Philadelphia shooting

(Aug 15, 2019)

PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 15 – State Rep. Brian Sims expressed his support for the Philadelphia Police Department and the medical professionals who rushed to help after six officers were hurt yesterday in a mass shooting. “My thoughts are with the first responders who jumped into action to prevent innocent bystanders from being hurt and the medical staff who worked swiftly to treat the officers who were injured,” Sims said. “This kind of violence needs to stop. We’ve seen 7 mass shootings in the city this year. There is no justifiable reason for one person to have that much fire power. It’s time we take real action to enact sensible gun legislation and make our streets safer.” Sims also commended Police Commissioner Ross and District Attorney Krasner for speaking with the suspect and convincing him to surrender and end the seven-hour standoff. “Unfortunately, we’ve seen that these incidents can happen anywhere and at any time. Nearby, 80 children were held in a daycare and Temple University was placed on lockdown. These mass shootings are affecting people at school, at the grocery store, at the movies, and at church. They’re causing trauma for people of all ages, races, and backgrounds. Enough is enough.” Read more


Rep. Sims announces $7 million in state funding for arts, tourism projects in 182nd District

(Aug 05, 2019)

State Rep. Brian Sims announced today that $7 million in state funding has been awarded to three economic development projects in the 182 nd District. “This funding will go a long way to move these projects toward completion, which will undoubtedly benefit the communities where they will operate,” Sims said. “Increasing access to the arts, supporting inclusive organizations and bolstering tourism in our community will improve quality of life in our district..” Awards from the state’s Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program were awarded to the following projects: Awards from the state’s Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program were awarded to the following projects: William Way LGBT Community Center, awarded $1 million for William Way LGBT Community Center Reconstruction . The project will renovate the front portion of the existing building at 1315 Spruce St., while retaining its historic elements, and demolish and replace the rear wings. The project will add 9,800 square feet of usable space, including a 51 percent increase in rental space, and make the building fully ADA compliant. Components of the project include renovation of the front façade to make the building more welcoming; glazing and opening the new rear of the building to provide a second inviting entrance; restoring the historic lobby; creating gender-neutral bathrooms with full height toilet partitions; replacing the elevator for increased handicap access; Read more


Sims, Philadelphia legislators on impending Hahnemann University Hospital closure

(Jun 26, 2019)

HARRISBURG, June 26 – State Rep. Brian Sims, along with members of the Philadelphia House and Senate delegations, have released the following statement on the impending closure of Hahnemann University Hospital: “The Philadelphia House and Senate delegations have come together to request emergency funding from Governor Wolf to address the dire situation at Hahnemann University Hospital. HUH is a vital health care provider for Philadelphians and the surrounding communities, and members of the legislature are committed to working with stakeholders to find a solution to ensure that HUH remains a fully functioning hospital. “In order to understand the means necessary to prevent closure, we have requested that the owners of HUH, American Academic Health System, submit to an audit and agree to a state-appointed independent monitor to oversee operations and financial management. "The closure would immediately impact the Philadelphia region through the loss of good paying jobs and an economic driver in the city, as well as throughout the commonwealth. We will do everything in our power to work with state, local and institutional partners to prevent the loss of this historic institution.” The Philadelphia legislators sent a letter to the governor Tuesday, asking for his assistance in keeping Hahnemann University Hospital from closing. Read more


Sims joins legislators to unveil anti-discrimination legislation

(May 06, 2019)

HARRISBURG, May 6 – State Rep. Brian Sims, D-Phila, today partnered with Reps. Dan Frankel, D-Allegheny, and Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila., along with Sen. Larry Farnese, D-Phila., to announce the introduction of legislation to help combat discrimination in the commonwealth. The legislation (H.B. 1404 and S.B. 614) would update Pennsylvania’s current nondiscrimination law – originally written in 1955 – to ensure that all residents, regardless of race, color, religion, ancestry, age, sex, national origin, disability -- and now sexual orientation, gender identity and expression – can participate in and contribute to the state’s economy. “It’s unacceptable that today, there are Pennsylvanians who must be afraid that they’ll lose their job or home simply because of who they are. As some of my colleagues have been advocating for this legislation for the past 20 years, it’s time we get serious about it. It’s literally lifesaving,” Sims said. It is currently legal in Pennsylvania to fire someone and deny them housing or business services solely based of the person being gay or transgender. A recent survey of Pennsylvania residents showed that 73 percent incorrectly believe discrimination against gay and transgender people in the workplace and in housing and business services is already illegal. The same study found 78 percent of Pennsylvanians are in support of updating the current Human Relations Act Read more


Sims Rallies For Police Reform Legislation

(Apr 30, 2019)

Pa. state Rep. Brian Sims joined advocates from across the commonwealth to rally for police reform legislation. He explains why taking action now is critical for Pennsylvanians. Read more


Sims Rallies For Equal Pay

(Apr 29, 2019)

Pa. state Rep. Brian Sims joined advocates in Harrisburg to push legislation that would ensure equal pay for women in the workplace across Pennsylvania. He explains why this issue should be a non-issue in the commonwealth. Read more