Breakfast After the Bell
In 2018, Monica crafted and negotiated HB 1508 which eventually passed with bipartisan support. This "Breakfast After the Bell" bill assured students who likely come to school hungry would have access to food even if they arrived after the bell rang. Schools were provided with guidance and access to grants to implement this new program, and learning time will be more effective because students' basic needs will have been met.
In 2019, Monica crafted a bill that created pathways to graduation that were more equitable for every path a student might take after graduation. It was an overdue recognition that not every student wants to go to college, or straight to work, or into a trade program, but that all students should have the choice of any of those. Many students were denied a diploma because they were required to pass a state test that was not designed to be accountability for the student, but for the state. Monica Stonier's HB 1599 changed that and put students in control of their futures again. It passed with bipartisan support and was celebrated by the business community, labor, and educators across the state.
Domestic Workers Protection
in 2020, Monica passed legislation that protects domestic workers, most often immigrant women of color working in isolated and unmonitored environments, from certain behaviors resulting in intimidation, unpaid wages, and abuse. Because of the unique work locations and schedules kept by workers like hotel and house cleaners, care providers, and seasonal workers are often left unprotected by the laws in Washington. Monica's HB 2511 ensures that all workers have protections under the law in Washington.
Comprehensive Sexual Health Education
Even with rampant misinformation spread, Monica fought to ensure passage of a bill that provides age-appropriate, medically accurate, and inclusive health education about safety, communication, biology, and affirmative consent in all schools. Most school districts in SWWA have been providing this information, but it should't matter where a student lives, they should all have access to the crucial health information they need to understand how their bodies and relationship work, and where to get trusted information as they grow.
For several years, Monica has been working on building what would be the first-in-the-nation portable benefits program, where gig workers and independent contractor can access an employee/employer paid benefit. Platform workers, like those who you find on your phone to give you a ride, deliver you dinner, or bring you groceries, do not have health benefits, workers compensation, or unemployment. Monica Stonier is working with businesses and workers on a plan for a benefit program that stays with the worker, no matter where they work, so even part-time workers can have access to these crucial benefits.
Read her contribution to Fortune here: https://fortune.com/2017/10/13/gig-economy-workers-benefits/
CHAMPIONING NEW INITIATIVES
Vancouver was ground zero for the measles outbreak last year. Ensuring kids are vaccinated when they go to school ensures kids are healthy and safe, and ensures that children with legitimately compromised immune systems can enjoy their lives like all others. Monica worked with Rep. Harris to negotiate and ensure the passage of a bill that delivered that peace of mind to families across the state.