Office of Government Relations

Legislative Agenda 2020

The ASUW urges the legislature to:

Address Inequities, such as:
– Expanding eligibility for last session’s HB 2158’s Working Connections Child Care work requirement exemption to student parents seeking a bachelor’s or advanced degree.
– Expanding access to state financial aid for undocumented students, including the implementation of a state-sponsored loan program.
– Allowing student athletes to earn compensation for services provided, to be paid for the use of their likeness, and to hire agents.
– Funding tuition waivers for students enrolled in federally recognized tribes to attend institutions of higher education.
– Repealing RCW 72.60.100, recognizing incarcerated workers as employees.
– Funding free menstrual products at public higher education institutions
– Menstrual products to be exempt from the state sales tax.
– Supporting the establishment of a state-wide Green New Deal to help address greenhouse emissions including those from public institutions of higher education.
– Promoting and implementing policies that address racial, socioeconomic, and other inequities in higher education.

Allow Access to Care, such as:
– Amending RCW 28B.10.660 to allow for the implementation of opt-out health insurance plans by public institutions of higher education.
– Establishing a statewide study to research current access to coverage for reproductive, mental, dental, vision, and general healthcare for Washington students.
– Amending RCW 9A.44.060 to redefine the current definition of consent as actual words or conduct indicating a freely given agreement to have sexual intercourse or contact.
– Funding and implementing specialized personnel, resources, and training for staff members to improve universities’ ability to respond to sexual violence and involved parties.
– Standardize transparent reporting and responding to sexual misconduct in Washington.

Combat Food & Housing Insecurity, such as:
– Expanding access to programs and policies that reduce students’ risk of food and housing insecurity.
– Providing a one year waiver for On campus housing on a space available basis, support for students eligible for the College Bound Scholarship who had previously experienced homelessness.
– Expanding the scope of HB 1893 to provide monetary assistance to students of public four year institutions experiencing unforeseen emergencies that affect the students’ ability to attend classes.
– Establishing a statewide gender-inclusive housing standard for public higher education institutions to ensure that such housing is accessible, adequate in amount, and integrated into the broader campus community.

Increase Accessibility in Higher Education, such as:
– Adequately funding the University of Washington’s Disability Resources for Students (DRS).
– Funding renovations of our inaccessible infrastructure to become ADA compliant for students with mobility impairments.
– Expanding remote access through the funding and use of technology infrastructure to ensure the rights of students with disabilities to access education.

Promote Mental Health & Wellness, such as:.
– Funding new counseling positions on campus to bring the current UW counselor to student ratio of 1:1755 to the recommended range of 1:1000 to 1:1500.
– Funding quality of life raises for UW counselors to reduce high turnover rates and prevent them from being “priced out” of their position.
– Providing long-term funding of counselors for student veterans.
– Mandating statewide comprehensive K-12 consent-based sex education.