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Press Releases

September 9, 2020 Press Release
Washington, DC – Congresswoman Barbara Lee (CA-13) and Reps. Karen Bass (CA-37), Robyn Kelly (IL-2), Judy Chu (CA-27), Joaquin Castro (TX-20), Deb Haaland (NM-1), and Sharice Davids (KS-3) introduced the COVID Community Care Act to establish a contact tracing program through community-based organizations and non-profits.

Contact tracing is a critical public health resource that helps slow the spread of disease. Contact tracers identify patients and contact all those who may have been infected in order to provide additional resources and services.

September 4, 2020 Press Release
WASHINGTON – Today, Congressmember Karen Bass (D-CA), Chair of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, and Congressman Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA) introduced bipartisan legislation to create resource centers in communities to assist individuals exiting custody and formerly incarcerated individuals.

In some states, a person released from prison is given as little as $10 and a bus ticket. According to a U.S. Sentencing Commission report, the average national recidivism rate for released individuals is 49.3% over 8 years. One of the reasons this rate is so high is because of a lack of access to resources.

September 3, 2020 Press Release
WASHINGTON - Today, Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA), Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, issued the following statement regarding the alleged arrest of Paul Rusesabagina.

"This week, Paul Rusesabagina appeared in Rwanda in handcuffs facing terror-related charges. According to reports, a spokesman for the Rwanda Investigation Bureau would not go into details about how and where Mr. Rusesabagina was apprehended, saying that he has to answer "charges of serious crime.” My office is monitoring this situation very closely.

September 3, 2020 Press Release
WASHINGTON - Today, Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA), Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, issued the following statement regarding the possible deportation of Pastor Steven Tendo.

"The Trump administration is preparing to deport Pastor Steven Tendo of Uganda who could face harassment, repression, arrest, and even death for advocating for human rights and voting rights. The United States government should allow people facing repression to remain in the United States. They should never have to face deportation."

August 31, 2020 Press Release
WASHINGTON – Today, Congressmember Karen Bass (D-CA), co-Chair of the Congressional Caucus on Foster Youth, introduced the bipartisan Foster Youth Dental Act of 2020, which will strengthen dental coverage under the Medicaid program for foster youth by increasing eligibility, providing incentives for dental providers, enhancing outreach efforts for enrollment, and protecting existing coverage for foster youth.

Youth enrolled in Medicaid/CHIP have access to oral health care but the utilization of oral care services varies by state and many foster youth fall through the cracks of care because oral health care is often treated as optional coverage. Tooth decay is the most common chronic condition among US children.

August 19, 2020 Press Release
WASHINGTON - Today, Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA), Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, issued the following statement regarding the arrest of Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and Prime Minister Boubou Cissé.

"I urge those responsible for the undemocratic seizure of power to return the country to a constitutional government. I recognize that the people of Mali have been in the streets protesting for months and there is a general sense of anger and frustration over the slow pace of political change and continuing insecurity throughout the country.

August 13, 2020 Press Release
WASHINGTON - Today, Rep. Karen Bass (D-CA), Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, issued the following statement in response to the ongoing violence in Cameroon.

"This week, a video of alleged separatists in Cameroon brutally killing a woman has been circulating widely. While this video has not been verified, it does highlight the ongoing insecurity and violence in the predominantly Anglophone Northwest and Southwest Regions of Cameroon.  Just last week, a Cameroonian humanitarian worker was killed in the Northwest Region. 

August 3, 2020 Press Release
WASHINGTON - Today, Rep. Bass, Chair of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, issued the following statement on the Arrests of Journalist Hopewell Chin’ono and Opposition Party Leader Jacob Ngarivhume in Zimbabwe

"I call on the Government of Zimbabwe to release journalist Hopewell Chin’ono and Jacob Ngarivhume, leader of the opposition party Transform Zimbabwe. The Government of Zimbabwe has continuously detained and arrested individuals who oppose their economic and political views, and this is a direct violation of their right to freedom of press, speech, and assembly.

July 22, 2020 Press Release
WASHINGTON - Today, Congressmember Karen Bass (D-Calif.), Chair of the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, along with Congresswoman Katherine Clark (D-MA), Vice-Chair of the Democratic Caucus, Congressman Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA) and Congresswoman Debbie Lesko (R-AZ), introduced the Protecting the Health and Wellness of Babies and Pregnant Women in Custody Act to provide a national standard of care to address pregnancy-related needs of incarcerated women during pregnancy, labor, delivery and postpartum periods.

“Our prison system was not created with women in mind and as a result continually fails to provide basic necessities to tens of thousands of individuals who are incarcerated every single day,” said Congressmember Bass. “Especially amid a pandemic, it is incumbent upon Congress to ensure that we are not inadvertently matching petty crimes with death sentences.

July 20, 2020 Press Release
WASHINGTON – Today, Congressmember Karen Bass (D-CA), Chair of the Congressional Black Caucus, introduced the Represent America Abroad Act of 2020 to ensure that the U.S. Foreign Service reflects the rich composition of the American citizenry. The legislation establishes a program to identify, attract and welcome diverse mid-career professionals into the Foreign Service.

The bill is being cosponsored by Congresswoman Judy Chu (D-CA), Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus; Congressman Joaquin Castro (D-TX), Chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus as well as the Vice-Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee; and Congresswoman Deb Haaland (D-NM), Co-Chair of the Congressional Native American Caucus.

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