WSA Legislative Agenda 2019
Students from the Washington Student Association's (WSA) member campuses create a legislative agenda that is meant to increase access to public four-year universities in Washington State and improve the quality of on-campus services that are essential to the academic success of our students. This year the WSA is prioritizing funding for the State Need Grant, increased mental health services, student loan refinancing options and more. Individual campus contacts can be found in our "Board of Directors" tab.
Full and Accelerated Funding for the State Need Grant
The State Need Grant is Washington's largest need-based financial aid, however, thousands of students who are eligible to receive funding are left unserved to due lack of funding from the state. With an investment of $18 million during the 2018 session, Washington State moved closer to fully funding the SNG last year and we applaud those efforts. The WSA aims to ensure the following:
- Full funding to aid the 18,000 students who are eligible but unserved
- Reliable funding for the SNG to prevent future cuts
- Expand eligibility from 70% of the median family income to 100%
Undocumented Student Loan Program
With recent threats to the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, we subsequently see the presence and retention of our undocumented students under attack. With no clear indication from the federal government that DACA students will be protected, the WSA is advocating for increased protections and financial aid programs for our undocumented student population here in Washington State. The WSA is asking the state legislature to create a state-funded loan program specifically for undocumented students to access which would create a reliable way for students to pay for higher education expenses.
Eliminate Working Requirement for Working Connections Child Care
Child care can often exceed the cost of tuition for some student parents. 25% of the student body in Washington are working parents and deserve access and increased affordability for child care services. Currently, eligibility for the Working Connections Child Care (WCCC) subsidies requires that a student works at least 20 hours a week. We believe that students shouldn’t be required to work this minimum amount of hours while going to school and taking care of a family. The WSA advocates for the work requirement for the WCCC program to be removed and allow students to access this subsidy.
Related Bills: SB 5341 (Pro)