In the News

SeaTac Blog: Senate passes legislation that would improve trails, infrastructure

SeaTac Blog: Senate passes legislation that would improve trails, infrastructure

Residents of the 33rd Legislative District – which includes SeaTac – would see major improvements to transportation infrastructure under legislation passed Tuesday, Feb. 15, 2022 by the state Senate. “Move Ahead Washington makes the strongest investments in our communities in memory,” said Sen. Karen Keiser (D-Des Moines). “It makes significant additions to pedestrian and bike trails, invests in more sustainable aviation, ...

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Seattle Medium: Senate Passes Legislation To Expand And Strengthen Apprenticeships

Seattle Medium: Senate Passes Legislation To Expand And Strengthen Apprenticeships

OLYMPIA — Workers in Washington state would benefit from new apprenticeship programs in growing fields, reinvigorated support for existing apprenticeships, and significantly increased state funding for apprentices at public colleges, under two bills passed recently by the Senate. “The ‘earn-while-you-learn’ approach, with both classroom instruction and supervised on-the-job training, makes apprenticeships accessible to many—especially women and people of color—who can’t take ...

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The Olympian: Washington can be a leader on protecting sexual harassment, assault survivors

The Olympian: Washington can be a leader on protecting sexual harassment, assault survivors

For far too long, workers subjected to blatantly illegal and toxic behavior have been forced into a culture of silence, unable to speak about their experiences or to warn others about peril in the workplace. Non-disclosure agreements, which were originally intended to protect proprietary information such as trade secrets, are now so prevalent that employees subjected to sexual harassment, racial and ...

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Edmonds Beacon: Employment test for marijuana use questioned

Edmonds Beacon: Employment test for marijuana use questioned

Washington marijuana users won't face losing their job over a positive drug test if a proposal under consideration in the state Legislature wins approval. SB 5517 would update the Washington law that currently allows employers to turn-away job applicants and fire employees for testing positive for marijuana use in drug screenings. Prime sponsor of the bill, Sen. Karen Keiser (D-Des Moines), said ...

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Protocol: Amazon warehouses have notorious injury rates. States are finally doing something about it.

Protocol: Amazon warehouses have notorious injury rates. States are finally doing something about it.

In DuPont, Washington, an Amazon fulfillment center has been fined twice in the last year for, among other issues, setting grueling expectations that increase workplace injuries. When Washington State Senator Steve Conway heard about the citations from the state’s labor department (which Amazon is appealing), he asked Amazon if he could tour the facility. He’d recently read a report showing ...

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MyNorthwest: Washington’s Unemployment Trust Fund starting to bounce back in 2022

MyNorthwest: Washington’s Unemployment Trust Fund starting to bounce back in 2022

Having hit its lowest point in the pandemic last year, the state’s Unemployment Trust Fund is now on the up-and-up in 2022. Barring any other economic recessions, it appears the fund will stay that way. “We’re looking at forecasts from the Economic and Revenue Forecast Council — those suggest that we’re at a point where we’re stabilizing and are growing,” said Dan ...

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Seattle Times: Expand and improve Washington’s apprenticeship programs

Seattle Times: Expand and improve Washington’s apprenticeship programs

The straight line from high school to college to career success — often considered the preferred path to a living wage — is no longer the prevailing wisdom. Too many Washingtonians are being left behind, with only 40% of students completing a credential after high school. Realizing that a strong educated workforce depends on a variety of ...

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Public News Service: WA Prescription Affordability Board Would Limit Drug-Cost Increases

Public News Service: WA Prescription Affordability Board Would Limit Drug-Cost Increases

Washington state lawmakers are considering a measure to limit the growing cost of prescription drugs. Senate Bill 5532 would establish a Prescription Drug Affordability Board, which would convene a panel of experts to cap the prices of medications. Four states, including Colorado and Maryland, already have boards. Sen. Karen Keiser, D-Des Moines, who introduced the legislation, said when people cannot ...

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Columbia Basin-Herald: New bill could reduce prices for insulin, other medications

Columbia Basin-Herald: New bill could reduce prices for insulin, other medications

Insulin prices and other drugs could drop in 2023 if the state passes two bills, which had public hearings by the Washington State Senate Health & Long Term Care Committee on Wednesday. Senate Bill 5532 would establish the Prescription Affordability Board, said Sen. Karen Keiser, D-Des Moines. She advanced similar legislation to the governor’s desk in 2020, but it was vetoed ...

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State of Reform: Democrats, Republicans outline 2022 health care priorities

State of Reform: Democrats, Republicans outline 2022 health care priorities

Legislators from both parties met virtually on Jan. 6 at the 2022 Washington State of Reform Health Policy conference to discuss their health care priorities ahead of the legislative session. The 2022 session begins on Monday, and while it is a short one, there are a number of bills already filed and being drafted. Democrats Rep. Jessica Bateman and Sens. Emily ...

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