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Action Alert, OneAmerica

A Budget for Stronger Communities

Last Thursday, the state legislature was unable to come to an agreement on a state budget before the end of the regular legislative session. As a result, the legislature convened for a special session on Monday at noon that will continue until a budget agreement is reached. The last version of the budget that was passed by the House on Thursday was a budget for stronger communities that protected many programs serving immigrants and refugees, including naturalization services, medical interpreters, cash assistance, childcare and employment services, among others. Unfortunately, the budget was unable to get 25 votes in the State Senate after Republicans and 3 moderate Democrats sidetracked budget negotiations by forcing through a budget that cut deeply into social services and education.

Now that the special session has begun, it is incredibly important to let your legislators know that you want a budget that continues to protect these critical programs and that upholds Washington State’s commitment to stronger families and communities.

The most recent compromise budget between the House and the Senate combined the best of both the initial House budget and the Senate Democrats’ budget and protected many programs from further cuts, including:

  • Washington New Americans citizenship program, which provides citizenship services and free legal help to Washington residents in the naturalization process
  • State Food Assistance Program, which provides food to 31,000 very low-income immigrant parents and their kids

Conversely, the State Senate budget as passed by Republicans and 3 moderate Democrats would have eliminated both of these programs. Please contact your legislators and let them know you want a final budget that will create stronger families and communities, not a budget that is balanced on the back of low-income communities of color and immigrants and refugees.

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OneAmerica, formerly Hate Free Zone, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that advances the fundamental principles of democracy and justice by building power within immigrant communities.



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