Legislative Update: Week of March 12

The Nebraska Legislature has moved into full session with debate on a few of our priority bills beginning this week. During this short session, everything is expected to move quickly now so we will keep you updated on the issues and when YOU can take action! The first step is to know your senator. Find your senator here.

Set Aside Bill to be Heard by Full Legislature This Week

Floor debate on LB 1132, a bill supporting sex trafficking survivors, could begin as early as today. The bill would allow sex trafficking survivors to have convictions linked to their victimization set aside and their related records sealed. More than 90% of sex trafficking survivors report being arrested for crimes related to their trafficking. As a result, many trafficking victims are arrested, tried and convicted for crimes they didn’t choose to commit.

Unjust criminal records harm survivors/victims of sex trafficking. Background checks can prevent them from building a life once they’ve escaped trafficking by prohibiting them from accessing housing, employment and education. Read more about how the bill seeks to help survivors in the Lincoln Journal-Star.

Please call your senator and ask them to support survivors of sex trafficking in our state by advancing LB 1132.

Your Voice is Critical: Support Title X Funding in Nebraska

The main budget bill, LB 944, continues to include language that would restrict access to family planning and remove Planned Parenthood of the Heartland from Nebraska’s Title X program. This would harm more than 8,000 of the 28,000 Nebraskans who count on Title X health centers for access to reproductive health care.

Title X is the only federal grant program dedicated solely to family planning and reproductive health services for low-income and uninsured patients. Nebraska’s Title X-funded health centers offer pelvic exams; screening for cervical and breast cancer; screening for high blood pressure, anemia and diabetes; screening and treatment for STDs; infertility services; and health education. Learn more about Title X’s impact on Nebraska’s women & girls.

Nebraskans deserve quality care. Call your senator now and ask them to not restrict access to Title X services in the budget.

Save the Date: UNhappy Hour on Equal Pay Day

Join us for an UNhappy Hour on Equal Pay Day—a day symbolizing how much longer it takes for the average woman to earn as much as the average man did by December 31 of the previous year. In other words, it takes white women an average of 15 months to earn what the average white man earned in 12 months. And it’s worse for women of color: taking African-American women an average of 20 months, Native American women 21 months and Latina women an average of 22 months to “catch up” to what a white male earns in 12 months.

The event is free to attend but registration is required. Sign up today!

If you have any questions about the information discussed in this Legislative Update, feel free to contact our new Research and Policy Director Tiffany Seibert Joekel via email at tjoekel@omahawomensfund.org.