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  • Washington lawmakers seek to professionalize birth-care doulas

    Azeb Tuji, Washington State Journal|Updated Feb 22, 2022

    OLYMPIA - Aijanae Young is a birth postpartum doula, a person who delivers non-medical care after birth. She said she didn’t realize the value she brought to her clients until she was the one in need. Young said before her doula arrived, she felt her pain and symptoms weren’t being addressed, and she had to fight to have the support she needed. “My doula listened to my cries, saw my struggles, she said. “I was afraid and suddenly didn’t know what to ask.” Doulas can provide physical, emotional, and informational support dur...

  • Child mental health gets attention

    Azeb Tuji, Washington State Journal|Updated Feb 22, 2022

    OLYMPIA – In the wake of the pandemic, Seattle Children's Hospital reports an increasing number of children need outpatient mental health treatment, but not enough providers exist to meet the demand. “The devastating consequence of the inability to access outpatient care is that you’re likely to get worse and need emergency department or crisis level care,” said Kashi Arora, from Seattle Children's Hospital. House Bill 1800, now under consideration in the state Legislature, creates a behavioral workgroup to identify barriers...

  • Transportation funding package moves to the House for a vote

    Brooklynn Hillemann, Washington State Journal|Updated Feb 22, 2022

    OLYMPIA – A package that pays for free passes on public transportation for young people and upgrades to major bridges are all part of a 16-year transportation funding plan approved by the Washington State Senate. The Senate approved the proposed revenue sources for the $17 billion ‘Move Ahead Washington’ transportation investment package on a 29-20 vote on Feb. 15. The bill sponsored by Transportation Committee Chair Sen. Marko Liias, D-Everett, now goes to the House for consideration. The plan includes funding for transit pr...

  • Washington Senate passes high-capacity magazines ban

    Azeb Tuji, Washington State Journal|Updated Feb 16, 2022

    OLYMPIA – In an effort to tackle gun violence and strengthen public safety, the state Senate passed legislation Feb. 9 that bans the sale of high-capacity magazines – anything over 10 rounds – but doesn’t prohibit the use of high-capacity firearms already in possession. “High-capacity magazines make it easy for shooters to inflict maximum damage by allowing more shots to be fired without needing to pause to reload. Because of this we see these accessories favored by mass shooters,” said Sen. Marko Liias D-Everett,...

  • Senate bill 5919, appropriate use of force for law enforcement debated

    Juan Morfin, Washington State Journal|Updated Feb 15, 2022

    OLYMPIA – The amount of force a police officer uses must be “proportional and reasonable,” a bill approved recently by the State Senate says. The bill also specifies officers will also be allowed to engage in vehicular pursuits as long as there is “reasonable suspicion” when making a traffic stop. The Senate voted 31-18 on Senate Bill 5919 on Feb. 9 with a handful of Republicans joining the majority Democrats. The bill cleans up language adopted last year on the use of force that many in the law enforcement community...

  • Gov. Inslee backs off mandates

    The Journal|Updated Feb 15, 2022

    OLYMPIA – Gov. Jay Inslee on Wednesday, Feb. 9, backed off some of his coronavirus mandates during a press conference. Inslee announced he is ending his call-up of the Washington National Guard, will allow non-emergent surgeries to resume and cut back on mask requirements. "We are lifting our outdoor masking requirements by Feb. 18," he said. "Today is not the day to lift all of our masking requirements." The governor said he'll make a decision on ending all mask mandates a...

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