Vainieri Huttle, Downey & Houghtaling Bill to Honor Transgender Advocate Babs Siperstein Clears Committee
To honor the legacy of one of New Jersey’s more influential and prominent LGBTQ advocates, the Assembly Human Services Committee on Monday advanced a bill (A-5074) to rename the state’s “Transgender Day of Remembrance” held annually on November 20th to “Babs Siperstein Transgender Day of Remembrance.”
Bill sponsors Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen), Joann Downey and Eric Houghtaling (both D-Monmouth) released the following joint statement:Read more
Vainieri Huttle, Quijano & Kennedy Bill to Streamline Pathway for Non-Biological Parents to Adopt Children Clears Assembly Panel
In New Jersey, a birth certificate does not create legal parental rights for the couple listed as the child’s parents. In fact, a person is considered a legal parent of the child only if they are biologically related.
In a scenario in which a couple uses artificial insemination or other methods to conceive a child, and one partner does not contribute genetic material, that partner does not have legal rights to the child despite being listed as a parent on the birth certificate.
“Same-sex couples, LGBTQ couples, and heterosexual couples struggling with fertility who use assisted reproduction procedures may not be aware that the non-biological partner is not considered their child’s parent under the law,” said Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen), a primary sponsor of legislation to address this issue. “In these cases, parents need to adopt their own children to have legal rights. The adoption process is painstaking and lengthy, and reform is long overdue.”Read more
Sumter & Vainieri Huttle Bill to Create Commission to Study Tuition Aid Grant Program Advances in Assembly
Aiming to find ways to improve the State’s Tuition Aid Grant Program, a bill (A-1997) sponsored by Assemblywomen Shavonda Sumter (D-Bergen, Passaic) and Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) to create a commission to study the program and make recommendations was approved Thursday by the Assembly Higher Education Committee.
The bill’s sponsors released the following statements:Read more
Vainieri Huttle & Reynolds-Jackson Bill Extending Coverage for Donated Breast Milk to Mothers Insured Under Medicaid Clears Assembly Panel
With research indicating that breast milk can protect infants from infection and reduce rates of health issues developing later in life, a measure to include coverage for pasteurized donated human breast milk under Medicaid was approved by the Assembly Financial Institutions and Insurance Committee on Thursday.
The bill (A-4747) would extend coverage under certain circumstances where either a mother is unable to give her child her own breast milk or an infant has a medical condition or need, as determined by a licensed medical practitioner. Coverage would be available to families with infants under six months of age.Read more
In an effort to protect the environment and reduce unsafe access to prescription drugs, Assembly Democrats Raj Mukherji, Valerie Vainieri Huttle, John Armato and Robert Karabinchak have sponsored legislation to require pharmacies to educate customers and offer methods for them to properly dispose of their medicine. The bill passed the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee on Thursday.
The bill (A-5667) would require pharmaceutical sites that dispense prescription medicines to provide patients with information about the potential risks of improperly discarding unused pills and syringes. One of those risks includes making it easier for someone to steal the medication from the trash for their own personal use or resale.
The legislation is named “Charlie’s Law” in Charlie Van Tassel’s memory – a young athlete who struggled with addiction for many years before tragically succumbing at the age of 33.Read more
Measure Requires License to Operate, Establishes Third-Degree Offense for Violators
In an effort to prevent a repeat of tragedies in other states where thousands of embryos were lost, a measure sponsored by Assembly Democrats Pamela Lampitt, Raj Mukherji and Valerie Vainieri Huttle was signed into law by the Governor on Wednesday.
Prompted by disasters in California and Ohio where more than four thousand eggs and embryos were lost, the law (formerly bill A-4605) will require the New Jersey Department of Health (DOH) to regulate and license embryo storage facilities. In certain cases, the loss of eggs and embryos was caused by improper monitoring of storage temperature fluctuations—an operational issue that could have been avoided. This new law will work to guard against such operational mishaps as well as long-term power outages during natural disasters or catastrophic storage system failures.Read more
McKeon, Vainieri Huttle, Jasey & Mukherji Bill to Provide Licensure to Drama and Dance/Movement Therapists Passes Assembly
Measure to Create Board for Holistic Oversight of Creative Arts Therapies
Moving to license all drama and dance/movement therapists in New Jersey, a measure to establish the State Board of Creative Arts Therapies for the oversight and regulation of all such therapeutic practices passed 62-11 in the full Assembly on Monday.
The bill (A-1220) further outlines defined and fair criteria for obtaining licensure to provide services as a drama and dance/movement therapist, in turn promising a higher standard of care in New Jersey as a result.Read more
The crime of terrorism would be expanded under New Jersey law to include crimes committed to influence or incite an act of terror against a person or group of people based on their race, religion, sexual orientation, gender or creed under legislation approved Monday by the Assembly Homeland Security and State Preparedness Committee.Read more
Conaway, Murphy and Vainieri Huttle on Legislation Banning Flavored Vape Products and Menthol Cigarettes
In an effort to reduce the growing number of minors using electronic smoking devices, including 25% of high schoolers, three Assembly Democrats have sponsored legislation to ban the sale of flavored vaping products in New Jersey. The bill (A-3178) would also ban the sale of traditional menthol cigarettes. The sponsors released the following statements:Read more
Vainieri Huttle Praises Fort Lee High School for Being Chosen to Participate in Lady Gaga Foundation’s Mental Health Program
On Monday, November 4, Fort Lee High School in collaboration with the Bergen County Division on Mental Health, formally announced their partnership with Lady Gaga’s Born This Way Foundation’s teen Mental Health First Aid (tMHFA) pilot program. Fort Lee High School was chosen as one of 35 schools nationwide to participate in this groundbreaking program.
In response to this news, Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) released the following statement:
“This news comes at a crucial time, as New Jersey experienced 100 documented suicides amongst 15- to 24-year olds in 2017 alone, the highest number and rate since the 1990s. As teens in New Jersey and across the nation report alarming rates of depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts, it is evident that now, more than ever, we must do more.Read more