Delegate Nicole Williams Newsletter - June
Dear Neighbors and Friends - June is a month that celebrates and brings together different communities. Every year we welcome the month of June by honoring and recognizing the LGBTQ+ community. As we enjoy pride festivities, we must remember the historical context and the movement leaders. While the Supreme Court ruled that LGBTQ+ people are protected against job discrimination based on their sexual orientation or transgender status, today we received an unfortunate Supreme Court ruling that wedding businesses can now refuse to do LGBTQ+ weddings. Celebrating how far we have come is important, but today's ruling reminds us that there is so much more work to do. This link provides several resources for the LGTBQ+ community in Prince George's County. June is also a time to show appreciation for fathers around the world. It wasn't until 1972 that Father's Day was established as a national holiday to be observed. All fathers and father figures deserve to be celebrated regardless of their circumstances. This link provides a program dedicated to promoting healthy relationships between fathers and families in Prince George's County. During the month we also celebrate Juneteenth, or "Freedom Day," which is the oldest nationally celebrated commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States. It was on June 19th, 1865, that Union soldiers landed in Galveston, Texas, with news that the war had ended and that all slaves were free. One hundred fifty-six years later, On June 17th, 2021, Juneteenth became a federal holiday. As we end the month of June, click here to access and support the various black non-profits in Prince George's County. Lastly, we passed several bills that will go into effect on July 1st. Read below to see some of the legislation that will take effect tomorrow. - Nicole
Bills that Become Law on July 1st
Cannabis for Recreational Use This bill will allow individuals 21 years or older you use and purchase cannabis products from a State approved dispensary. Those who have a medical use card for cannabis will have access to either priority times or spaces for the purchase of cannabis for medical purposes. Cannabis is still illegal on the federal level so it is still illegal to take cannabis across state lines. It is also still illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to use or possess cannabis. Keep Our Heroes Home Act This bill will expand the amount of military retirement income exempt from state taxes from $15,000 to $20,000 for veterans 55 and older and from $5,000 to $12,500 for younger veterans next tax season. Cash For Body-Worn Cameras This bill requires all Maryland law enforcement agencies to outfit their on-duty officers with body-worn cameras. Beginning Saturday, the Maryland Department of General Services and the Department of Information Technology will be required to negotiate affordable contracts for equipment. Title IX Support Maryland public schools will be required to inform students, parents, and families about how they can file sexual misconduct complaints. Public Comments on State Procurement Beginning next week, the Board of Public Works will begin to prepare a procedure for members of the public to file comments on agenda items electronically.
Article of the Month
This past Juneteenth, Eleanor Roosevelt High School Step Team members performed for Step Xplosion, organized by Step Afrika at Strathmore. The step team, also known as "Dem' Raider Boyz," was founded at Eleanor Roosevelt High School in 2001 and has been working with Step Afrika for about a decade. Click here to read more about their preparation and how stepping is deeply rooted in the African-American community!
Join us as we celebrate this monumental day!
You may RSVP by sending an email to the email address below or by clicking the image below to fill out our RSVP form. Thank you and we look forward to seeing you there!
Beacon Heights Summer Playgrounds Program
"The Value of a true leader is not measured by the work they do, but by the work, they inspire others to do" - Simon Sinek
The national COVID-19 state of emergency declaration ended on May 11th. Older adults (50 years and older), and individuals who are immunocompromised or have underlying medical or cardiac conditions should take necessary precautions to stay safe.
The Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration (MDOT MVA) has announced that qualified plug-in electric vehicle owners can apply for a new HOV (High-Occupancy Vehicle) permit. The MVA began accepting applications on June 12th through this portalor by visiting an MVA branch office. Please note that prior permit holders should remove expired vehicle permits and reapply for new ones. The new program includes a $5 application fee and is valid through September 30th, 2025. Any further information regarding the new HOV permit program can be found using this link.
Pop-Up Community Clinics
Clinicas Communitaria St Matthews/San Mateo Church is offering free primary care health services every first Sunday and last Tuesday of each month (Primer Domingo y ultimo martes de cada mes). These services will be held from 9 am to 3 pm. Address: 5901 36th Avenue Hyattsville MD, 20782 Call or Text for an Appointment: 240-258-8583 Mande Un Texto O Llame A: 240-258-8583
WSSC Water continues its Get Current amnesty program, which launched on June 1st to help customers with their delinquent water and sewer bills. The program provides bill credits and waives 100 percent of late payment charges and turn-on fees for qualifying customers. To learn more about WSSC Water's Get Current program and determine if you qualify, visit wsscwater.com/getcurrent. You can find information on other customer assistance programs at wsscwater.com/assistance.
Prince George's County Department of Housing Community Development 2023-2024 Affordable Housing Portfolio: The portfolio lists over forty upcoming and completed senior living communities and multi-family dwellings, now available to County residents. If you want to access more information about the new portfolio, you can watch the promotional video here. If you are currently facing housing or rental concerns due to financial hardship, the organizations listed below can provide some support:
Maryland Homeowner Assistance Fund offers support mortgage relief, weatherization, housing counseling, and legal services.
Housing Counseling Services Inc. offers a variety of MD housing and rental assistance resources including but not limited to housing counseling, foreclosure prevention, utility assistance, and veteran support services
211 Maryland's database can connect you with local programs and resources, call 2-1-1 to speak with an Information and Referral Specialist or visit their website
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