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Articles written by Leona Vaughn

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  • Legislature bans single-use plastic bags

    Leona Vaughn, WNPA News Service|Mar 11, 2020

    Consumers will need to remember to bring their own reusable shopping bags if they want to avoid the fee that a new law will put on plastic bags. Senate Bill 5323 bans retailers and grocers from handing out single-use plastic bags for free. Shoppers will instead be offered a reusable carry-out bag at check out for an eight-cent fee. “We have been working to deal with the plastic blob in the Pacific Ocean for a decade now,” said Rep. Gael Tarleton, D-Seattle, chair of the House Finance Committee. “There is no perfect tax policy to figure out h...

  • Sex education becomes a requirement for state public schools

    Leona Vaughn, WNPA News Service|Mar 11, 2020

    Public school students will soon have a greater understanding of their sexuality, sexual abuse and the importance of consent under a new law passed by Washington state legislators. Senate Bill 5395 requires all public schools in Washington state to give public school children in kindergarten through 12th grade a comprehensive sexual education. The curriculum must follow certain requirements, including encouraging healthy relationships, teaching students about sexual violence, educating them on consent and being inclusive of all students....

  • Lawmakers propose a plan to treat mentally ill people without their consent

    Leona Vaughn, WNPA News Service|Feb 5, 2020

    People unable to care for themselves due to mental illnesses could be subject to receiving treatment, even without their consent, if Washington state legislators pass a law to establish executorships for people who are incapacitated. “Our mental health and addiction system of care is failing, in my view, the most vulnerable,” said the proposed bill’s primary sponsor, Sen. Steve O’Ban, R-Pierce County. If passed, Senate Bill 6109 will initiate a four-year pilot program in King, Pierce, and Snohomish counties, effective Jan. 1, 2021. Each county...