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Kenyatta announces $215.6K in grants to combat homelessness

Cephas, Kenyatta and Innamorato hold hearing to discuss plan to help low-income tenants facing eviction amid COVID-19

(Oct 09, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 9 – In their ongoing efforts to keep people in their homes, state Reps. Morgan Cephas, Malcolm Kenyatta and Sara Innamorato held a public hearing today to discuss legal aid for tenants facing eviction amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The three brought members of the House Democratic Policy Committee and experts together to discuss legislation they are introducing to provide legal representation to low-income tenants facing an eviction hearing. "A study from the Center for American Progress shows nearly 90% of landlords and property managers across the country have access to legal representation compared to just 10% of tenants. And in most eviction cases, tenants without representation lose," said Cephas, D-Phila. "This ultimately comes down to fairness and the need to prevent our most vulnerable neighbors from being tossed out on the street. Our plan aims to connect them with the quality protection they need to help keep a roof over their head, especially during this health crisis." “The CDC’s moratorium will only stave off evictions until the end of the year, but the threat of a large-scale housing crisis still looms, so we must act now,” said Kenyatta, D-Phila. “During these uncertain and incredibly stressful times in which medical experts are urging everyone to stay at home, Pennsylvanians should be able to take solace in having a home of their own to retreat to. Read more

 

10/9/20 – Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction – Virtual

(Oct 09, 2020)

Materials from a House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing held virtually and co-chaired by State Reps. Malcolm Kenyatta, Sara Innamorato and Morgan Cephas. Read more

 

HOUSE DEMOCRATIC POLICY COMMITTEE HEARING Topic: Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction

(Oct 08, 2020)

AGENDA 10:00 a.m. Welcome and Opening Remarks 10:10 a.m. Panel One: Patrick Cicero Executive Director, Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network John Pollock Coordinator, National Coalition for a Civil Right to Counsel Sam Chenkin Founder, Reclaim The Sector 10:30 a.m. Questions & Answers 10:50 a.m. Panel Two: Bob Damewood Staff Attorney, Regional Housing Legal Services Kevin Quisenberry Legislative Director, Community Justice Project Rasheedah Phillips Managing Attorney of Housing Policy, Community Legal Services, Inc. A. Michael Snyder Chancellor, Philadelphia Bar Association Catherine Carr Civil Gideon and Access to Justice Task Force Co-Chair, Philadelphia Bar Association 11:30 a.m. Questions & Answers 11:50 a.m. Closing Remarks Read more

 

HOUSE DEMOCRATIC POLICY COMMITTEE HEARING Topic: Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction

(Oct 08, 2020)

AGENDA 10:00 a.m. Welcome and Opening Remarks 10:10 a.m. Panel One: Patrick Cicero Executive Director, Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network John Pollock Coordinator, National Coalition for a Civil Right to Counsel Sam Chenkin Founder, Reclaim The Sector 10:30 a.m. Questions & Answers 10:50 a.m. Panel Two: Bob Damewood Staff Attorney, Regional Housing Legal Services Kevin Quisenberry Legislative Director, Community Justice Project Rasheedah Phillips Managing Attorney of Housing Policy, Community Legal Services, Inc. A. Michael Snyder Chancellor, Philadelphia Bar Association Catherine Carr Civil Gideon and Access to Justice Task Force Co-Chair, Philadelphia Bar Association 11:30 a.m. Questions & Answers 11:50 a.m. Closing Remarks Read more

 

HOUSE DEMOCRATIC POLICY COMMITTEE HEARING Topic: Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction

(Oct 08, 2020)

AGENDA 10:00 a.m. Welcome and Opening Remarks 10:10 a.m. Panel One: Patrick Cicero Executive Director, Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network John Pollock Coordinator, National Coalition for a Civil Right to Counsel Sam Chenkin Founder, Reclaim The Sector 10:30 a.m. Questions & Answers 10:50 a.m. Panel Two: Bob Damewood Staff Attorney, Regional Housing Legal Services Kevin Quisenberry Legislative Director, Community Justice Project Rasheedah Phillips Managing Attorney of Housing Policy, Community Legal Services, Inc. A. Michael Snyder Chancellor, Philadelphia Bar Association Catherine Carr Civil Gideon and Access to Justice Task Force Co-Chair, Philadelphia Bar Association 11:30 a.m. Questions & Answers 11:50 a.m. Closing Remarks Read more

 

State lawmakers representing Philadelphia welcome lawsuit against commonwealth, legislature for restricting gun-safety measures

(Oct 07, 2020)

PHILADELPHIA, Oct. 7 – State House lawmakers representing the House Philadelphia Delegation and Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus today pledged their full weight behind major legal action being taken against the commonwealth for preventing local governments from enacting their own gun-safety laws. The lawsuit filed by the city and private law firms on behalf of Pennsylvanians who have been impacted by gun violence was announced at a news conference in Philadelphia today. Philadelphia Delegation Chairman Jason Dawkins and PLBC Chairman Stephen Kinsey said it was long past time for the many people who have been impacted by gun violence to receive true acknowledgement and justice for their pain. They said the delegations they lead have worked for years to enact sensible gun-safety measures in the state but have been hampered by a Republican majority legislature determined to give no one in the state the ability to reduce gun violence and save lives. “Philadelphia and municipalities across the state took action tragedy after tragedy on behalf of the residents they serve when the state would not, only to be met with callous laws specifically designed to prevent them from doing so,” Dawkins said. “I am equally tired of the hallow promises to help reduce gun violence being made by the Republican majority following each tragedy. They hold the power to move the commonsense gun safety legislation we put forward. Yet, they continue to deny Read more

 

House Democratic Policy Committee to hold virtual hearing Friday on legal aid for tenants facing eviction

(Oct 06, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Oct. 6 – State Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, announced today that the House Democratic Policy Committee will hold a public hearing on legal aid for tenants facing evictions. The hearing will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, Oct. 9. The media and public can watch the livestream at www.pahouse.com/live . Requested by state Reps. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila; Morgan Cephas, D-Phila.; and Sara Innamorato, D-Allegheny; the hearing will collect testimony from policy experts as they work on legislation to provide legal aid for tenants. Testifiers and legislators will speak remotely. Testifiers will include: Patrick Cicero , executive director, Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network. John Pollock , staff attorney, Public Justice Center. Sam Chenkin , founder, Reclaim The Sector. Rasheedah Phillips , managing attorney of housing policy, Community Legal Services Inc. Bob Damewood , staff attorney, Regional Housing Legal Services. Kevin Quisenberry , legislative director, Community Justice Project. A. Michael Snyder , chancellor, Philadelphia Bar Association. Catherine Carr , civil gideon and access to justice task force co-chair, Philadelphia Bar Association. Following the hearing, testimonies and full hearing video will be posted at www.pahouse.com/policycommittee . Read more

 

Boyle, Kenyatta to introduce legislation to ensure democracy isn't compromised in the November election

(Sep 28, 2020)

Just weeks before the general election, state Reps. Kevin Boyle and Malcolm Kenyatta are introducing legislation to strengthen Pennsylvania's election laws and help ensure democracy isn't compromised in November. "It's no secret that this president will go to great lengths to ensure victory, no matter what the American people want," said House State Government Committee Democratic Chairman Boyle, D-Phila./Montgomery. "With Pennsylvania being a key battleground state, we have a responsibility in the state legislature to close unnecessary loopholes and make sure everyone's vote counts." Boyle said today their proposal would crackdown on so-called faithless electors by amending Pennsylvania's Election Code to require presidential electors to vote for the presidential and vice-presidential candidates who received the highest number of votes in the commonwealth during the general election. Under this plan, which is similar to Colorado and Oklahoma's law, faithless electors who vote against the candidates they vowed to support, would: Face a misdemeanor punishable by fine. Have their vote invalidated. Be replaced. “Faithless electors disregard the will of the people and ultimately tarnish the integrity of our democracy,” Kenyatta Read more

 

Today’s House Democratic Policy Committee Hearing Postponed to October 9

(Sep 23, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 23 – State Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, announced that the House Democratic Policy Committee public hearing on legal aid for tenants facing evictions that was scheduled for 9 a.m. today has been moved to Friday, Oct. 9 due to the House being called into session on short notice. Requested by state Reps. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila, Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., and Sara Innamorato, D-Allegheny, the hearing will still be held from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. in Room G-50 Irvis Office Building in Harrisburg on Oct. 9. The media and public are urged to watch the livestream at www.pahouse.com/live . Read more

 

Kenyatta announces $215.6K in grants to combat homelessness

(Sep 14, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 14 – As the threat of a housing crisis stemming from the pandemic looms, state Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila, today announced that state grants totaling $215,600 have been awarded to two local organizations in his 181 st District to combat homelessness. Kenyatta, who is a member of the newly established Democratic Housing Working Group, said the grants will help Drueding Rental Assistance and Prevention Program ($115,600) provide rental and financial assistance to young parent-headed households, and Serenity Court- Medical Respite for Homeless ($100,000) to expand capacity of its current recovery facility which accommodates medically fragile people experiencing homelessness who are recovering from major illnesses, surgery, or COVID-19. “I’ve been tirelessly working to address the ongoing issue of homelessness through eliminating poverty, prior to the pandemic. Now, I am actively trying to keep more people from losing their homes in the wake of this economic crisis caused by the pandemic,” Kenyatta said. “Combatting homelessness—no matter the cause-- takes a concerted effort among elected officials and advocacy organizations. I am thrilled to see these grants help carry our efforts of ensuring residents can have a place to call home.” Kenyatta said the grants were distributed by The Philadelphia Office of Homeless Services, which received a grant award of nearly $1.5 million Read more

 

House Democrats fight to keep renters, homeowners Safe at Home

(Aug 31, 2020)

The House Democratic Housing Working Group announced a package of bills to protect people across Pennsylvania as the state’s moratorium on evictions and foreclosures expires Read more

 

Police Reform Working Group issues statement on House Republican Policy hearing on law enforcement; calls for further legislative action

(Aug 27, 2020)

The Police Reform Working Group, a collection of local and state elected officials and advocates, issued the following statement in response to a Pennsylvania House Republican Policy Committee hearing on law enforcement interactions with the community:“We appreciate the House Republican Policy Committee shining a light on how law enforcement interacts with communities around the state. This is a necessary discussion that is long overdue and it’s encouraging to hear presenters today acknowledge that police reform is necessary. Read more

 

Kenyatta condemns hate targeting transgendered Pennsylvanians

(Jul 23, 2020)

HARRISBURGH, July 23 – State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta condemned the Bloomsburg Fair mocking state Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine and pointed out that the transphobic remarks relay to ongoing violence against trans people. “Dr. Levine is an exemplary public servant as she continues to lead our commonwealth through these uncertain times in a dignified manner. Those pivoting to transphobic slandering to undermine her leadership, which has proven to save lives, reveal a deep seeded and ugly hatred against the trans community. “These so-called jokes at the expense of trans identities invalidates the humanity of trans people and greenlights depraving violence against them. That violence has been often been directed at trans women, and even more often, specifically Black transwomen. Transphobia coupled with misogynoir has resulted in the brutal slaughtering of six Black transwomen nationwide in the span of a few months -- one of which happened right here in our commonwealth in my hometown of Philadelphia. “These latest murders are why we must actively condemn transphobia in every form, including ‘jokes’ at fairs. We must also hold perpetrators of hatred accountable to convey the message that Pennsylvania will not tolerate hatred!” Kenyatta, D-Phila., is the first openly gay man of color in Pennsylvania history serve in the General Assembly. He has been a staunch advocate for LGBTQ+ rights and Read more

 

House members to introduce resolution honoring Congressman John Lewis

(Jul 23, 2020)

HARRISBURG, July 23 – This week, state Reps. Stephen Kinsey, Jordan Harris, and Malcolm Kenyatta, all D-Phila., announced they will be introducing a resolution honoring Congressman John Lewis, who died on July 17. “Congressman Lewis was an integral part of the Civil Rights movement and a leading voice in the advancement of economic and social justice. His life was devoted to activism and advocacy for equal justice in America, and his actions have inspired so many today,” Kinsey said. “The next generation of leaders will continue to follow his legacy and help us achieve the equality that Congressman Lewis pictured.” “Congressman John Lewis was truly a giant of the Civil Rights movement and, beyond that, a moral compass in the United States House of Representatives,” Harris said. “Few have been able to have such a profound effect on the centuries-long struggle for equality and dignity for our Black and brown communities, but Congressman Lewis was a beacon of hope and righteousness that shined through very dark clouds in our nation’s history. It’s an honor to be fraternity brothers with Congressman Lewis in Phi Beta Sigma, and we will ensure his legacy will not be forgotten and, instead, will continue to energize and mobilize generation after generation that will carry on the mantle of this fight.” "The life and service of John Lewis was immensely influential in my own Read more

 

Lawmakers: Time to close Amazon sales tax loophole

(Jul 20, 2020)

Proposed change would level the playing field between local businesses and online retailer Read more

 

Rep. Kenyatta celebrates $50 million in hazard pay grant funding for Pa. frontline workers

(Jul 17, 2020)

HARRISBURGH, July 17 – State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta said his fight to guarantee Pennsylvanians working on the frontlines during the fatal COVID-19 pandemic are afforded increased wages has finally been accomplished with Gov. Tom Wolf recently announcing the availability of $50 million in grant funding to help employers provide hazard pay to employees in life-sustaining occupations. Kenyatta, D-Phila., called the program a sincere expression of appreciation for the sacrifices of frontline employees, and an overall win for workers’ rights. “I am proud of Governor Wolf’s support in our demands to prioritize Pennsylvania frontline workers in any mitigation efforts during this crisis,” Kenyatta said. “It is their labor that has sustained countless communities across our commonwealth throughout the pandemic. Providing this funding for hazard pay transcends the hollow ‘thank you,’ and explicitly demonstrates our appreciation for their service by guaranteeing that they are properly compensated.” From the start of this crisis, Kenyatta boasts a solid track record of championing protections for the rights and safety of Pennsylvania’s essential workers. In May, the lawmaker stood in solidarity with Temple health care workers on the picket line in his district. Last month, in a video that has since gone viral , Kenyatta challenged booing Republicans in the House chamber about Read more

 

Police Reform Working Group issues statement on Vice President Pence’s visit with the Fraternal Order of Police

(Jul 09, 2020)

In response to Vice President Mike Pence visiting with the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 5, the Police Reform Working Group, made up of state and county elected officials and advocates, released the following statement:“As members of the Police Reform Working Group, we believe that the path to achieving community safety and racial justice in Pennsylvania must be two-fold. First, we must improve our current system of policing through accountability, oversight, and tangible policy changes that will diminish instances of police brutality against all citizens, but especially against the Black community. Second, we must work with communities to transform and re-envision policing itself through bold systemic changes that center around those most impacted by police violence and structural racism. Read more

 

Kenyatta ensures Black communities hard hit by pandemic are at the forefront of COVID-19 mitigation efforts

(Jul 09, 2020)

HARRISBURGH, July 9 – State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila., said his efforts to ensure the Black community is represented in Pennsylvania’s efforts to continue to understand COVID-19 came to fruition on Tuesday as the House passed legislation to begin the epidemiological study of the deadly virus. Adopted as an amendment to a bill (H.B. 2450) that would establish an independent COVID-19 State Epidemiology Advisory Council tasked with making policy recommendations under the direction of epidemiologists appointed by deans of select accredited state universities, Kenyatta’s legislation would require that the council’s policy recommendations and final report also be focused on the disparate impacts of COVID-19 on specific racial and ethnic groups, particularly Black and brown communities. “This is a win and significant step toward effectively mitigating the pandemic here in Pennsylvania, especially in our Black and brown communities,” Kenyatta said. “We know that race and ethnicity are playing a key role in the spread of this deadly disease and that Black and brown communities are disproportionately affected. “In seeking solutions, it is crucial for this council of epidemiologist to be deliberate in the approach to understanding how this virus spreads, with a keen focus on critical demographics. I am proud my legislation received overwhelming bipartisan support, an acknowledgement that we Read more

 

Kenyatta ensures Black communities hard hit by pandemic are at the forefront of COVID-19 mitigation efforts

(Jul 09, 2020)

HARRISBURGH, July 9 – State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila., said his efforts to ensure the Black community is represented in Pennsylvania’s efforts to continue to understand COVID-19 came to fruition on Tuesday as the House passed legislation to begin the epidemiological study of the deadly virus. Adopted as an amendment to a bill (H.B. 2450) that would establish an independent COVID-19 State Epidemiology Advisory Council tasked with making policy recommendations under the direction of epidemiologists appointed by deans of select accredited state universities, Kenyatta’s legislation would require that the council’s policy recommendations and final report also be focused on the disparate impacts of COVID-19 on specific racial and ethnic groups, particularly Black and brown communities. “This is a win and significant step toward effectively mitigating the pandemic here in Pennsylvania, especially in our Black and brown communities,” Kenyatta said. “We know that race and ethnicity are playing a key role in the spread of this deadly disease and that Black and brown communities are disproportionately affected. “In seeking solutions, it is crucial for this council of epidemiologist to be deliberate in the approach to understanding how this virus spreads, with a keen focus on critical demographics. I am proud my legislation received overwhelming bipartisan support, an acknowledgement that we Read more

 

Kenyatta announces Environmental Education Grant for The U School

(Jun 26, 2020)

PHILADELPHIA, June 26 – State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta, D-Phila., today announced that a $2,998 Environmental Education Grant has been awarded to The U School in his 181 st Legislative District. The grant, Kenyatta said, is funded by the state Department of Environmental Protection and will assist in the development of an “Urban Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources” club to introduce 10 th and 11 th graders to career paths in environmental sustainability. “The fight for justice includes environmental justice and equity. It’s a fight that can only be won by empowering communities that have been systemically barred from being stakeholders of their food, water, land and air quality,” Kenyatta said. “Fostering and instilling an interest in environmental sustainability careers among our local youth is a step toward progress, which is why I am thrilled that The U School has been awarded this grant.” The Environmental Education Grants Program engages youth and adults in environmental justice, climate change, and/or water quality improvement, expanding their understanding of these issues in Pennsylvania and providing skills to take responsible action to protect their environment The program was established by the Environmental Education Act of 1993, which mandates setting aside 5% of the pollution fines and penalties DEP collects annually for environmental education Read more

 

Cephas, Kenyatta and Innamorato hold hearing to discuss plan to help low-income tenants facing eviction amid COVID-19
Oct 09, 2020

10/9/20 – Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction – Virtual
Oct 09, 2020

HOUSE DEMOCRATIC POLICY COMMITTEE HEARING Topic: Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction
Oct 08, 2020

HOUSE DEMOCRATIC POLICY COMMITTEE HEARING Topic: Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction
Oct 08, 2020

HOUSE DEMOCRATIC POLICY COMMITTEE HEARING Topic: Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction
Oct 08, 2020

State lawmakers representing Philadelphia welcome lawsuit against commonwealth, legislature for restricting gun-safety measures
Oct 07, 2020

House Democratic Policy Committee to hold virtual hearing Friday on legal aid for tenants facing eviction
Oct 06, 2020

Boyle, Kenyatta to introduce legislation to ensure democracy isn't compromised in the November election
Sep 28, 2020

Today’s House Democratic Policy Committee Hearing Postponed to October 9
Sep 23, 2020

Kenyatta announces $215.6K in grants to combat homelessness
Sep 14, 2020

House Democrats fight to keep renters, homeowners Safe at Home
Aug 31, 2020

Police Reform Working Group issues statement on House Republican Policy hearing on law enforcement; calls for further legislative action
Aug 27, 2020

Kenyatta condemns hate targeting transgendered Pennsylvanians
Jul 23, 2020

House members to introduce resolution honoring Congressman John Lewis
Jul 23, 2020

Lawmakers: Time to close Amazon sales tax loophole
Jul 20, 2020

Rep. Kenyatta celebrates $50 million in hazard pay grant funding for Pa. frontline workers
Jul 17, 2020

Police Reform Working Group issues statement on Vice President Pence’s visit with the Fraternal Order of Police
Jul 09, 2020

Kenyatta ensures Black communities hard hit by pandemic are at the forefront of COVID-19 mitigation efforts
Jul 09, 2020

Kenyatta ensures Black communities hard hit by pandemic are at the forefront of COVID-19 mitigation efforts
Jul 09, 2020

Kenyatta announces Environmental Education Grant for The U School
Jun 26, 2020