2023 Legislative Session
OUR LEGISLATIVE WORK
In 2023 we fought for critical progressive legislation in language access, healthcare equity, and education access.
The Nevada Legislature adjourned the 82nd Legislative Session Sine Die on May 31st and went into two special sessions. As a leading advocacy organization representing Nevada’s Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) communities, One APIA Nevada worked hand-in-hand with state legislators, notably the Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) Legislative Caucus during the 2023 Session.
In partnership with the AANHPI Legislative Caucus and the Asian Community Development Council (ACDC), One APIA Nevada hosted its third biennial AANHPI Heritage and Lobby Day, with over 120+ community members in attendance. One APIA Nevada also hosted 50+ lobby visits with state legislators and held a reception for legislative staff at the Governor's Mansion.
During 2023 AANHPI Heritage & Lobby Day, community members and leaders came to Carson City to speak directly to their representatives about the issues impacting them. The bipartisan dinner at the Governor's Mansion during the activities also featured a keynote speech by Justice Patricia Lee, the first AANHPI Supreme Court Justice for Nevada.
The event celebrates the beginning of AANHPI Heritage Month by making the voices of hard-working AANHPIs across the state heard at the Nevada Legislature. The event recognizes the growing political voice and power of Nevada's 392,000 AANHPIs, which comprises roughly 12.5% of the state's total population and accounts for one in every ten voters. The 2022 election showed how important the group was in many close races—AANHPIs now have the power and numbers to be the voice of change in Nevada. We also provided both written and verbal testimony on more than 20 bills, working in conjunction with other progressive organizations to craft messaging and bring community members to testify on bills.
AAPI Legislative Caucus
In 2023, we have the most AANHPI Legislators serving in office as a part of the AANHPI Legislative Caucus in history, reflective of our growing community in Nevada. We also want to recognize the important contributions and work of the members in our AAPI Legislative Caucus. First formed in 2019, the caucus currently has seven members who identify as Asian American Pacific Islander, the most in state history.
The current members of the AANHPI Legislative Caucus are:
Senator Rochelle Nguyen (SD-3)
Assemblywoman Selena Torres (AD-3)
Assemblywoman Brittney Miller (AD-5)
Assemblyman Duy Nguyen (AD-8), Vice-Chair
Assemblywoman Erica Mosca (AD-14), Chair
Assemblywoman Cecelia González (AD-16)
Assemblyman Reuben D'Silva (AD-28), Secretary and Treasurer
One APIA Nevada's Legislative Wins:
✓ AB73 will allow all students to wear cultural attire in their commencement ceremonies; previously, this was on a case-by-case basis, dependent on the institution.
✓ AB139 will require government agencies to include Middle Eastern and North Africa (MENA) as an ethnic category; previously, there was no specific ethnic distinction for MENA.
✓ AB207 will allow school districts to purchase insurance to protect students participating in work-study programs to address student liability concerns.
✓ AB212 will require NSHE institutions to provide students with their transcripts regardless of unpaid fines, removing a critical economic disparity for students pursuing further education.
✓ AB274 will require high school students to take financial literacy classes before graduation, setting up Nevada's students for a financially stable future.
✓ AB286 will allow people in local jails to exercise their right to vote, including those awaiting trial or release; prior, anyone detained in local jails would not be able to vote, regardless of individual eligibility.
✓ SB131 will protect healthcare professionals who provide care for individuals seeking reproductive healthcare services in Nevada.
✓ SB172 will guarantee the ability of a minor to consent to certain health care services, including STD treatment and contraception.
Outlined below are the missed opportunities that One APIA Nevada will continue to address moving forward:
✓ AB246: this legislation sought to surpass the federal mandate set by the Voting Rights Act Section 203 by requiring counties to provide translated election materials to a broader range of communities. Despite the strong community support for electoral language access, it is disappointing that the Governor overlooked this critical issue.
However, One APIA Nevada remains committed to collaborating with local counties, particularly Clark County, as they voluntarily begin to provide translated materials in Chinese for the 2024 Election. We have already initiated conversations with the Clark County Registrar’s Office on implementation and outreach to the Chinese-speaking community.
✓ AB251: This bill aimed to ensure pharmacies offer translated prescription labels in the most commonly spoken languages among Limited English Proficient Nevadans.
One APIA Nevada will persist in working alongside legislators and stakeholders to implement language access parameters for prescription medications effectively.
✓ AB319: The proposed legislation sought to provide universal free school breakfasts and lunches for Nevada students.
One APIA Nevada firmly believes that no student in our state should experience hunger due to financial constraints. We will continue advocating for equitable access to nutritious meals for all pupils.
✓ AB366: This bill proposed revisions to the Task Force for the Keep Nevadans Working Act.
One APIA Nevada stands as a strong supporter of the Keep Nevadans Working Act and the UNLV law clinic. We firmly believe in sustained investments in resources that benefit immigrant communities.
✓ SB419: This legislation aimed to expand Medicaid coverage for minors, irrespective of their immigration status. Access to healthcare is a fundamental right, and our most vulnerable communities often bear the burden of inequitable policies.
One APIA Nevada firmly opposes any barriers based on immigration status and believes everyone should have equal access to healthcare.
While we express our disappointment over the missed opportunities to enhance the livelihood of AANHPI families in Nevada directly, One APIA Nevada remains unwavering in our commitment to advocating for the needs of the AANHPI community. Our ongoing priorities include championing language access, promoting healthcare equity, and ensuring equal access to education.