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House Democratic Policy Committee to hold hearing on Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction Wednesday in Capitol

(Sep 18, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Sept. 18 – 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 3 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 23 in Room G-50 Irvis Office Building in Harrisburg. The media and public are urged to 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 will speak remotely while members will participate in person and remotely. Testifiers will include: Patrick Cicero , executive director, Pennsylvania Legal Aid Network. John Pollock , staff attorney, Public Justice Center. 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

 

Cephas, Davis and Jones introduce bipartisan legislation to restore dignity for incarcerated women

(Sep 17, 2020)

State Reps. Morgan Cephas, Tina Davis and Mike Jones introduced bipartisan legislation today aimed at restoring dignity for incarcerated women across the commonwealth. “Everyone has rights, and this legislation is meant to strengthen the safety precautions and supports that the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections already has for incarcerated individuals by making sure these policies stay in place for years to come,” said Cephas, D-Phila. “While we continue the conversation and action around criminal justice reform, we must remember our women and girls within the system. Many of our incarcerated individuals are mothers or expectant mothers who are the primary providers for their family. Restoring their dignity means ensuring they have the resources they need to take care of themselves, rehabilitate and get back to their loved ones. This bipartisan effort to protect lives is one we all should agree on.” The legislation ( H.B. 2875 ) would: Update current restraint laws to better document restraint use and protect the mental and physical wellbeing of pregnant women and their children. Prohibit restrictive housing for pregnant or postpartum women and detainees. Require all correctional institution employees who have contact with pregnant, incarcerated individuals to undergo comprehensive, professional training related to pregnancy, post-partum, and trauma-informed care. Create an Read more

 

Cephas to Help People Complete 2020 Census, Provide Free Document Shredding Sept. 19

(Sep 16, 2020)

Rep. Cephas is teaming up with state Sen. Vincent Hughes and City Councilmember Curtis Jones Jr. to help people complete the 2020 Census and assist with other state-related services. Read more

 

Cephas Discusses Fight to Pass Safe At Home Bills on CBS 21's Face the State

(Sep 14, 2020)

State Rep. Morgan Cephas discussed her fight to pass Safe At Home legislation to protect homeowners, renters and small mom and pop landlords on CBS 21's Face the State. Read more

 

Philly Courts Temporarily Halt Evictions

(Sep 11, 2020)

As House Democrats fight to pass their Safe at Home legislation to help protect homeowners, renters and small "mom and pop" landlords, court officials in Philadelphia have put a hold on residential evictions in the city until Sept. 23. Read more

 

Cephas, Daley announce $23,518 grant to help St. Joseph’s University curb underage and dangerous drinking

(Sep 09, 2020)

State Reps. Morgan Cephas and Mary Jo Daley announced today that a $23,518 grant is going to help Saint Joseph's University reduce underage and reckless drinking. "Just like in our efforts to shut down stop-and-gos, curbing underage and reckless drinking can save lives and rid our neighborhoods of the violence that can come with it," said Cephas, D-Phila. "I will keep fighting to secure critical resources like this, which invest in educating our young people about the real-life risks of abusing alcohol and the need to set a responsible example for this generation and generations to come." The state funding is part of the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board's 2020-22 Alcohol Education Grant Program and, according to Cephas, will go toward a number of prevention initiatives, including: Social norms campaign. EVERFI AlcoholEdu. e-CHUG. e-TIPS University. PLCB conference. Safety App. "While it's inevitable that young adults in college test newly discovered freedoms, there are ways to do it safely, and programs like these at St. Joseph's help educate students to be more responsible in their actions," said Daley, D-Montgomery, who added that Plymouth Township Police Department and the CTC Wellness Foundation in Conshohocken each received $40,000 in PLCB grants Read more

 

Cephas helps community members complete the 2020 Census in ongoing effort to ensure everyone is counted

(Sep 09, 2020)

In her ongoing efforts to ensure everyone in her communities is counted, state Rep. Morgan Cephas on Tuesday helped local residents complete the 2020 Census ahead of the Sept. 30 deadline. "It's not just about showing people how to fill out the form but also educating them about what's at stake if they don't," said Cephas, D-Phila. "Census data is used to decide how billions in federal dollars are spent each year and, for every person who isn't counted, Pennsylvania stands to lose about $2,000 per person, per year. These are critical funds to invest in improving schools, roads, health care, food security and other assistance programs and services that so many of our most vulnerable neighbors rely on to live." According to Cephas, individuals came out to her West Philadelphia office to fill out their census form and get their questions answered, as well as receive free masks, hand sanitizer and important information about state-related programs. "This opportunity only comes once every 10 years and participation is paramount," explained Cephas. "At last check, the census response rate for our section of Philadelphia was just over 45%, which is extremely low. We must do better to ensure the 192nd Legislative District doesn't miss out on its fair share of resources that our communities need and deserve Read more

 

Cephas to Help Neighbors Complete 2020 Census, Distribute Free PPE on Sept. 22

(Sep 03, 2020)

With the Sept. 30 deadline approaching, state Rep. Morgan Cephas is helping her neighbors complete the 2020 Census. 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

 

Cephas Hosts Town Hall to Help Prepare Voters for Nov. Election

(Aug 27, 2020)

As Pennsylvania gears up to head to the polls, state Rep. Morgan Cephas hosted a virtual town hall Tuesday to connect her neighbors with information they needed to prepare for the upcoming general election. "Whether voting by mail or in person, I am encouraging everyone to devise their voting plan now to ensure they can cast their ballot safely and securely without worry," said Cephas, D-Phila. "We must come together and overcome attempts of voter suppression and reinforce how critical casting a ballot is in November to shaping the future of our city, state and country." As part of her Making Your Voice Count series, Cephas teamed up with Philadelphia City Commissioner Omar Sabir along with Philadelphia Local BMC 7048 to discuss mail-in voting, the critical role the United State Postal Service is playing and ways to get more young people involved in the election process. The U.S. Census Bureau also participated to remind individuals about the importance of taking part in the 2020 Census. "There is certainly more than one way to make your voice heard and that includes being counted," Cephas explained. "Right now, Philadelphia's response rate to the 2020 Census is hovering just over 50%, which is lower than Pennsylvania's overall rate of around 67%. It's crucial we increase this number to help ensure our communities don't miss out on our fair share of federal funding." 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

 

Fiedler, Davis, Cephas stand up for renters and homeowners facing payment challenges due to COVID-19

(Aug 26, 2020)

HARRISBURG, Aug. 26 – To help renters and homeowners struggling with payments as well as small landlords, today state Reps. Elizabeth Fiedler and Morgan Cephas, both D-Phila., and Austin Davis, D-Allegheny, introduced a measure that would expand the Pennsylvania Housing and Finance Agency’s Rental and Mortgage Assistance Program. “For too many renters and homeowners with mortgages the COVID-19 crisis has gone beyond a health emergency to a housing emergency, and it’s time for the state to step up and offer substantive relief,” Fiedler said. “Our proposal will cut the red tape and get the help into the pockets of the people who need it the most, and we hope it will move quickly through the legislature.” “A program people in need can’t access is worse than not having a program at all,” Davis said. “Everyone we’ve heard from made their voices clear – renters need help, homeowners in debt need help, small landlords need help, and they can’t wait any longer. We’re going to deliver that help and we know this need goes far beyond political parties and county lines.” Cephas agreed, saying, "As the COVID-19 crisis continues, so do the economic burdens for families struggling to pay the bills and keep a roof over their heads. Our legislation will help break down barriers and help ensure homeowners, small landlords and renters have access to financial relief that's Read more

 

Cephas announces $98,000 in funding to help improve services at West Philadelphia Achievement Charter Elementary School

(Aug 26, 2020)

Ahead of the upcoming school year, state Rep. Morgan Cephas announced today $98,009 in grant funding is going to help West Philadelphia Achievement Charter Elementary School improve educational services for its students during the COVID-19 pandemic. "As the new school year approaches, the priority must be to ensure our young people have a safe learning environment," said Cephas, D-Phila. "This funding goes toward our ongoing efforts to provide schools with the tools they need to adapt to these unprecedented times and overcome educational challenges brought on by the coronavirus." According to Cephas, the state resources are part of Governor's Emergency Education Relief Funds aimed at helping education agencies, including school districts throughout the state, that are designated for Additional Targeted Support and Improvement under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security, or CARES, Act authorizes governors to determine the educational use of GEER Funds. Under ESSA, states develop plans to designate schools for support based on student groups in key areas, including academic achievement, graduation rate and regular attendance. Student groups include race, economically disadvantaged, English language learners and students with disabilities. Grants were calculated based on elements of the federal Read more

 

Childcare Available During Digital Learning, Other Updates From Around the 192nd

(Aug 21, 2020)

Check out my latest update for information about Access Centers that will be available for students during digital learning, voting by mail and how much more time you have to respond to the 2020 Census. Read more

 

Sept. Deadline Set for 2020 Census, Free At-Home Internet Available for Students Ahead of School Year

(Aug 14, 2020)

Check out my latest update to read about how you can help us address the housing crisis, COVID-19 relief that's available for small businesses and much more. Read more

 

Cephas announces $100,000 in funding to support affordable housing project

(Aug 14, 2020)

State Rep. Morgan Cephas announced today $100,000 in funding is going to the Trades for a Difference organization to support their housing project aimed at offering affordable living to those who need it most. Cephas said the organization will use these resources, which were made available through the Pennsylvania Housing Affordability and Rehabilitation Enhancement fund, to rehabilitate eight donated properties in her legislative district to provide stable, affordable housing for low-income, first-time homebuyers. "Affordable housing is a continuing problem, especially in poorer communities, and COVID-19 has only intensified the housing crisis across Philadelphia and the entire commonwealth," said Cephas, D-Phila. "This funding helps to ensure families and our most vulnerable neighbors have access to the assistance and services they need to keep a roof over their heads during this pandemic." Cephas went on to say the project also will help reduce gentrification, violence and blight while creating jobs. "Trades for a Difference's Construction Leadership Development Program readies youth from under-resourced communities for employment in the building trades," explained Cephas. "We must continue investing in these types of opportunities that are meant to aid our young people in Read more

 

Cephas Joins Democratic State Legislators To Host Virtual Hearing on Maternal Mortality During the COVID-19 Pandemic

(Aug 13, 2020)

At the request of state Senator Judy Schwank (D- Berks) and state Representatives Morgan Cephas (D- Philadelphia) and Mary Jo Daley (D- Montgomery), the Senate Democratic Policy Committee today held a joint virtual public hearing with the House Democratic Policy Committee on maternal mortality during the COVID-19 pandemic. Lawmakers and experts in the field discussed the innovative responses to maternal mortality before and during the coronavirus pandemic, which put a unique strain on the overall healthcare system and traditional services. “The increasing rates of maternal mortality in the United States were extremely concerning before the coronavirus pandemic hit, but as we continue to fight the spread of COVID-19, we need to make sure that we are continuing to work for policies that give new moms and babies the healthiest outcomes possible,” Schwank said. “Not only must our healthcare system continue bracing for the effects of COVID-19, it must also continue to be vigilant in making sure that pregnant and new mothers are receiving the best treatment and care possible.” Senator Lisa Boscola (D- Lehigh/Northampton), chair of the Senate Democratic Policy Committee, continued, “We have spent a lot of time during this pandemic discussing the best ways to protect so many different segments of society. Maternal mortality is not just a women’s issue, it affects the family unit as a whole. Today we had the opportunity to discuss the best ways Read more

 

Women’s Health Caucus calls for investigation into ‘Real Alternatives’ nonprofit

(Aug 13, 2020)

The WHC chairs called the actions of the nonprofit into question, writing, “For more than 20 years, an organization known as Real Alternatives has been enriching itself and its executives, mismanaging state-appropriated funding, and potentially misdirecting that funding for advertising and legal services, including using Pennsylvania dollars in other states.” Read more

 

Help Us Address the Housing Crisis Amid COVID-19 By Taking Our Survey

(Aug 13, 2020)

Pennsylvania House Democrats seek your experiences relating to the housing crisis in light of COVID-19. Read more

 

Cephas announces grants to ensure safe return to learning

(Aug 07, 2020)

PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 8 – State Rep. Morgan Cephas, D-Phila., said several career and technical education schools in her 192 nd legislative district will receive pandemic relief grants to help them implement safety plans for students and staff. According to information from the Wolf administration, Continuity of Education and Equity Grants were awarded to the following schools : $39,724 to Overbrook High School. $27,651 to the Science Leadership Academy at Beeber. $29,250 tor Ad Prima Charter School. $19,000 West Philadelphia Achievement Charter Elementary School. “These grants will help sustain crucial educational programs in our community, which have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Cephas said. “This funding will help ensure the safety of students, continuity of services and essential educational programs, which often lead to jobs right here in our community, sustaining the well-being of our district’s and state’s economy.” The funding comes from the federal CARES Act and authorizes governors to determine the educational use of these relief funds. Continuity of Education and Equity Grants provide funding to support effective continuity of education programs such as summer and other expanded programming and industry credential assessments for students enrolled in career and technology centers negatively impacted by COVID-19 mitigation. Grants for the schools in Cephas’ district Read more

 

House Democratic Policy Committee to hold hearing on Legal Aid for Tenants Facing Eviction Wednesday in Capitol
Sep 18, 2020

Cephas, Davis and Jones introduce bipartisan legislation to restore dignity for incarcerated women
Sep 17, 2020

Cephas to Help People Complete 2020 Census, Provide Free Document Shredding Sept. 19
Sep 16, 2020

Cephas Discusses Fight to Pass Safe At Home Bills on CBS 21's Face the State
Sep 14, 2020

Philly Courts Temporarily Halt Evictions
Sep 11, 2020

Cephas, Daley announce $23,518 grant to help St. Joseph’s University curb underage and dangerous drinking
Sep 09, 2020

Cephas helps community members complete the 2020 Census in ongoing effort to ensure everyone is counted
Sep 09, 2020

Cephas to Help Neighbors Complete 2020 Census, Distribute Free PPE on Sept. 22
Sep 03, 2020

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

Cephas Hosts Town Hall to Help Prepare Voters for Nov. Election
Aug 27, 2020

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

Fiedler, Davis, Cephas stand up for renters and homeowners facing payment challenges due to COVID-19
Aug 26, 2020

Cephas announces $98,000 in funding to help improve services at West Philadelphia Achievement Charter Elementary School
Aug 26, 2020

Childcare Available During Digital Learning, Other Updates From Around the 192nd
Aug 21, 2020

Sept. Deadline Set for 2020 Census, Free At-Home Internet Available for Students Ahead of School Year
Aug 14, 2020

Cephas announces $100,000 in funding to support affordable housing project
Aug 14, 2020

Cephas Joins Democratic State Legislators To Host Virtual Hearing on Maternal Mortality During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Aug 13, 2020

Women’s Health Caucus calls for investigation into ‘Real Alternatives’ nonprofit
Aug 13, 2020

Help Us Address the Housing Crisis Amid COVID-19 By Taking Our Survey
Aug 13, 2020

Cephas announces grants to ensure safe return to learning
Aug 07, 2020