Articles written by Renee Diaz

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 By Renee Diaz    News    March 16, 2023

Task force on missing indigienous women proposed to continue

A state task force on missing indigenous women, created in 2021, will be extended at least two more years if a Senate-passed bill is approved by the House and governor. The bill, Senate Bill 5477, sponsored by Sen. Nikki Torres, R-Pasco, would...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    March 16, 2023

Proposed bill shortens Death with Dignity wait

Terminally ill patients seeking help to end their lives with the aid of a physician shouldn’t have to wait so long to get approval from the state. That’s the position of Sen. Jamie Pedersen, D-Seattle, who said he intends to eliminate barriers...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    March 16, 2023

Finland's president addresses legislature

For the first time in history, a foreign head of state has addressed a joint session in the Washington State Legislature. President Sauli Niinistö, of the Republic of Finland, met with Washington...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    March 2, 2023

Paraeducator test needs reform, educators say

A national test given to people who want to be paraeducators in public schools often slows the process and presents roadblocks for bilingual applicants, some educators say. Substitute House Bill 1015, sponsored by Rep. Sharon Tomiko Santos,...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    March 2, 2023

Senate OK's roadside safety measures

Installing automated vehicle speed cameras and other measures to improve highway safety were approved in separate bills by the state Senate Feb. 23. “Speed kills. Our work zones have lower posted speeds for very good reasons. This helps to prevent...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    February 23, 2023

Advocates press for highly capable testing

School districts should be required to test all students to see if they qualify for more challenging classes. That is the message behind Substitute Senate Bill 5072, proposed by T’wina Nobles, D-Fircrest. It requires districts to screen all...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    February 16, 2023

Legislature moving to tighten drunk driving laws

Ashley Bonus said she began her fight against impaired driving after her sister, Stacy Gammons-Ankerfelt, died in an accident in 2012. Now, she wants a new law that lowers the blood alcohol level needed to sustain an impaired driving conviction. “I...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    February 16, 2023

Legalizing fentanyl test strips proposed

Allisone McClanahan suffered from severe chronic pain and fibromyalgia. To ease her pain, the 26-year-old took a pain pill from a friend she thought contained oxycodone. Instead, she died of a drug overdose in 2021. After her death, the toxicology...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    February 9, 2023

Crime victims get added confidentiality

Victims and witnesses who track perpetrators in prison to know when they are released will be able to keep their identities private, if a bill that passed the Senate with broad bipartisan support becomes law. “This bill creates a safer environment...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    February 2, 2023

Constitutional amendment to protect abortion rights stirs support, protest

Mary Le Nguyen stood in front of a group of 70 abortion-rights activists on the Capitol steps for a "reproductive freedom rally" in early January and she shared her personal story of being a survivor...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    February 2, 2023

Effort to make roads safer has bipartisan support

Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle and Gov. Jay Inslee say they are backing a package of new laws aimed at protecting workers, pedestrians and commuters. New bills would include reducing the blood alcohol concentration limit for operating a...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    January 26, 2023

Bills push for improving salmon habitat, removing barriers to spawning streams

Starting at the Olympia Ballroom in the state capital's historic district, students from across Washington carried inflatable orcas and salmon and marched through the streets of Olympia to the steps o...

 
 By Renee Diaz    News    January 26, 2023

Bill would seal name changes for victims of abuse

People who change their names to hide from their abusers should be afforded more privacy. That, at least, is the conclusion Maia Xiao came to after a transgender friend committed suicide after being harassed online despite a name change. Her...

 

Washington lawmakers set for 105-day session

After two years of an online and hybrid Legislature that severely restricted legislators’ direct contact during the pandemic, the House and Senate chambers were full of people reuniting and greeting each other. at the opening of the state...

 

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