By Naomi Zeiset, Trident United Way Grants Manager
On February 15, 2023, Trident United Way staff attended the United Way Association of South Carolina’s United Way Public Policy Day. Held in Columbia, United Ways from across the state joined together to educate legislators on key community issues. This year, key issues included workforce housing, childcare, transportation and financial literacy.
The day began with conversations with Representative Shannon Erickson, about current education initiatives, Senator Mike Reichenbach, speaking on family services policies and a presentation from the Department of Employment & Workforce on workforce participation and development. After a legislative luncheon, Trident United Way staff made office visits and all attendees were invited to be recognized on the Senate Floor.
Trident United Way staff had the chance to meet with Representative Robby Robbins (Colleton & Dorchester Counties), Representative Gary Brewer (Charleston & Dorchester Counties), Representative Matt Leber (Charleston & Colleton Counties), Representative Chris Murphy (Dorchester County), Representative Kathy Landing (Charleston County), Representative JA Moore (Berkeley and Charleston Counties), Senator Marlon Kimpson (Charleston and Dorchester Counties), Representative Marvin Pendarvis (Charleston County), Senator Brian Adams (Berkeley, Charleston, and Dorchester Counties), Senator Larry Grooms (Berkeley and Charleston Counties), Representative Leon Stavrinakis (Charleston County), Representative Wendell Gilliard (Charleston County) and Representative Deon Tedder (Charleston and Dorchester Counties) over lunch to discuss the needs of the Lowcountry and how Trident United Way is working to improve outcomes.
Bills to Watch
Our time in the State House was insightful and education. Two bills were discussed that can greatly impact our community. If you are interested in advocating for these bills, please reach out to your local legislature to share your support.
S. 148 Free Breakfast & Lunch for SC Students
- This Senate bill is currently in committee. It would provide breakfast and lunch to all enrolled students. If passed, this would support stable school nutrition, therefore reducing food insecurity and allowing students to focus on learning. You can read more about the bill here.
H. 3726 Statewide Education & Workforce Development Act
- This bill has passed in the House and is in committee in the Senate. It would create the office of Statewide Workforce Development Coordination within the Department of Employment and Workforce, identify workforce barriers including affordable access to childcare and transportation, and create a 10-year strategic plan to boost labor force participation. The vision for this legislation is a customer-centric workforce development structure that is easy to understand and accessible for South Carolinians. You can read ore about the bill here.
Thank you to the United Way Association of South Carolina for hosting Public Policy Day and for giving Trident United Way the chance to advocate for Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester Counties.