State Rep. Ryu highlights bright spots of 2014 legislative session

State Rep. Cindy Ryu says that the 2014 legislative session was difficult and frustrating but did have bright spots

Among the bright spots, she points to including a career and technical education offering in the 24-credit graduation requirement for the graduating class of 2018-2019.

She said recently that she is happy that the legislature finished on time for the first time in her four-year legislative career.

She pointed with pride to the passage of the bill on “Involuntary Servitude,” which she sponsored in the House, noting, “Surprisingly it passed with bi-partisan support the first time Sen. Karen Frasier and I introduced it,” adding, “Gov. Inslee has signed it into law without vetoing any sections of it.

She said this on the House floor:

“America has been a beacon for freedom. Yet the U.S. Department of Justice estimates that each year 7,500 people are trafficked into the United States. Human traffickers use different methods to confine their victims: lock and key or more subtle techniques, including debt bonding, isolation, threat of violence, threat of shame, holding money for ‘safekeeping,’ or confiscation of passports and identification.

“Now these very bad actors can be prosecuted with criminal penalties if these human traffickers, in addition to coercing human beings to servitude, also take passports and identification cards in our state or threaten to turn them in.

She said recently that, while lawmakers finished work on time and passed a balanced budget with no new taxes, she is disappointed with the Senate Republicans for not allowing votes on a construction budget or a transportation package.

“Our state is growing, and we desperately need to build classrooms, colleges and parks while fixing our state’s aging bridges and highways, she said.

Ryu represents the 32nd Legislative District, including Lynnwood, parts of Edmonds and Mountlake Terrace, Woodway and nearby unincorporated areas of southwest Snohomish County, Shoreline and part of northwest Seattle.

She is vice chairwoman of the House committee on business and financial services, and a member of the Rules Committee, the Transportation Committee and the committee on technology and economic development.

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