On Monday, August 31st, Hadassah’s Seattle Chapter and Pacific Northwest Region held our 1st Virtual Day in the District with Congresswoman Dr. Kim Schrier (Washington State, 8th District). Speakers included her staff members, Wendy Muzzy and A. Bissonette and five PNW Region and Seattle Chapter Hadassah members, Susan Glicksberg, National State Advocacy co-chair and PNW Education and Advocacy chair, Ettie Davis, Seattle Chapter President, Deni Hirsh, Seattle Chapter Advocacy Chair, Gillian Witus, Seattle Chapter Membership VP and Jeri Bernstein, Seattle Chapter member. Stacey Dorenfeld, National State Advocacy co-chair.
We thanked Congresswoman Schrier for co-sponsoring the Never Again Education Act, which was signed into law at the end of June. We asked her about the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) and the Peace and Tolerance in Palestinian Education Act (HR 2343). She was familiar with UNRWA but less so with the bill but was open to learning about it.
We described to her what Hadassah is doing to fight COVID-19 and thanked the Congresswoman for co-sponsoring the EMPIL-DOC Act. We urged the Congresswoman to co-sponsor the Clinical Treatment Act (HR 913) and Clinical Trial Access and Improving Medical Research. Dr. Schrier shared an update about the federal government’s COVID-19 response efforts. She expressed her frustration with the current administration and how politization interferes with efforts to find common ground about the next relief package. We asked what we could do to help. She suggested calling the White House and Mitch McConnell. Dr. Schrier mentioned that the administration does not seem to recognize the financial challenges facing state and local governments.
Congresswoman Schrier expressed interest in the Access to Infertility Treatment Act (HR 2803). She was surprised at statistics that we shared and asked if routine screening for Chlamydia in teenagers had changed those statistics.
When asked, Dr. Schrier shared her current priorities. She discussed the COVID Relief bill passed by the house 3 months ago and stalled in the funding phase. She hoped some emergency funding could go into the budget by the end of September. As a follow-up, we sent talking points for the three bills that she would co-sponsor and stressed the importance that she support them (HR 2343, HR 913 and HR 2803). We expressed our thanks to her again for her support of the bills she has already supported.