Today, the DC Council, in its first vote, unanimously passed Councilmember Charles Allen’s bill to create a maternal mortality review committee that will work to examine why DC has one of the highest rates of death for women before, during, or in the year after child birth, and make policy recommendations based on those findings.
2018 is off to a fast start. There's a lot happening this year in Ward 6 -- from the start of RFK's redevelopment to ongoing efforts to make our infrastructure more pedestrian- and bicyclist-friendly to several schools and libraries planning their modernizations. All of that is to say, thanks for reading these newsletters and staying engaged -- my team can't do our jobs without hearing from you. I'll be resuming my weekly office hours in the community on Friday, February 2, in Shaw at Compass Coffee. My office hour events are another way to let me know what's on your mind. And of course, please don't hesitate to contact my staff or me if you have questions or concerns.
Three years ago, Councilmember Charles Allen introduced the bill to create DC's Books From Birth program in partnership with DC Public Library. Today, more than 32,000 District children have participated in the program, with nearly 65% of those children and families coming from neighborhoods with lower literacy rates.
Check out this article from Literary Hub on DC's Books From Birth program as well as a short history of Dolly Parton's Imagination Library, who had the great idea that all kids and parents should have access to age-appropriate books starting at birth. I appreciate that the author took the time to discuss the benefits of low-literacy parents reading to their children and how it can improve their own ability to read.
Two bills by Councilmember Allen ready for Council vote: creating Maternal Mortality Review Committee and protecting injured MPD officers’ jobs
Today, the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety voted to send three pieces of legislation to the full Council.
Welcome to 2018! It was a cold start to the year - historically cold - but the turning of the calendar is especially exciting this year as we're officially in the Year of the Anacostia! All year, we are going to mark important milestones around our river to highlight the need for greater care, to ensure there is access for all, and celebrate its central role in the health of our community. Quick programming note on holiday tree collection, which begins tomorrow:
Today, the DC Council unanimously passed in a first vote the Fair Elections Act, creating a program where candidates for public office can opt into a publicly-funded model that puts greater focus on small-dollar contributions from DC residents and strengthens their voice in DC elections. The bill was co-introduced by Councilmember Charles Allen and shepherded through the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety, where it passed unanimously 5-0.
After, DC will wait and see if Congress tries to undermine local law
Today the DC Council passed Councilmember Charles Allen’s (Ward 6) bill enshrining all of the women’s health benefits provided under the Affordable Care Act into local law, protecting DC women from being charged extra for basic health services if the ACA is ever repealed.
As the DC Council gets set to vote on Councilmember Allen's Fair Elections Act, he penned an opinion piece in this month's issue of the Hill Rag, laying out his work to restore DC residents' trust in their local government and in the election process. The Fair Elections Act is just the latest law Councilmember Allen's leadership has helped pass at the Council working to earn back that trust by making it easier to vote, making it easier to run for public office, removing big money from our elections, and stepping up our campaign finance laws.
Read the piece here or pick up a copy around Ward 6: http://bit.ly/2m5V7qi
Councilmember Allen celebrates Board of Elections implementing his law modernizing ballot and petition signature gathering
Program one of several laws Allen has written to modernize and open DC’s elections process
Councilmember Charles Allen (Ward 6) celebrated today’s announcement from the DC Board of Elections launching its eSign mobile petition application. The program was created thanks Councilmember Allen’s Ballot Modernization Amendment Act of 2015. It was passed into law and funded during the FY2018 budget process.
December is always a busy month with so many great events, from tree lightings to winter celebrations to holiday markets to our very own annual Ward 6 Brickie Awards. All of them are opportunities to get together as neighbors and enjoy the people and places that make our community special. Let's jump in because there's A LOT of really great news to share.