In our country’s current hyper-politicized climate, few issues unite and galvanize Americans. However, in the wake of George Floyd’s tragic death at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer, nearly everyone agrees that reforms must be implemented to reel in the powers of law enforcement and ensure all Americans are treated fairly. This is particularly important to minority communities, who feel their voices are too often ignored by those in power.
They’re right to feel that way. We saw this firsthand in Arizona just last month when lawmakers at the State Capitol killed a key police reform measure. The legislation, SB 1556, would have restrained the unconscionable power of law enforcement to police for profit. Under Arizona’s civil asset forfeiture laws, police and other law enforcement entities have the authority to seize private property from citizens—their cars, their cash, their homes—without the property owner ever being convicted of a crime. To make matters worse, even if a person is found innocent, they still rarely ever recover their property.
There is a solution if legislators are willing to put politics aside and take action. Read more from Goldwater Institute President and CEO Victor Riches in the Arizona Capitol Times.
Louisiana has joined Ohio and Indiana in following the Goldwater Institute’s lead by breaking down barriers to work for military families. This week, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards signed into law a Goldwater Institute-inspired bill to help put military families back to work faster when they relocate into the Pelican State.
Based on the Goldwater Institute’s model legislation, Louisiana’s Breaking Down Barriers to Work for Military Families Act allows military members and spouses who are asked to relocate into the state to more easily transfer an out-of-state occupational license. Rather than ask America’s service members to duplicate training or testing in order to continue to work, the new law allows boards to recognize the time and training applicants have already invested in their careers.
But that’s not all. Thanks to the Goldwater Institute’s work, 20 states have introduced broader legislation to extend the benefits of universal recognition legislation to all skilled professionals. It’s all part of the Institute’s efforts to defend Americans’ right to earn a living and revitalize our economy. Read more about Breaking Down Barriers to Work here.
Kayla Svedin was looking for an educational lifeline for her special needs daughter, and she found it in Arizona’s Empowerment Scholarship Accounts (ESAs)—a program that helps her ensure that her child gets the education she deserves. Thanks to her family’s ESA, Kayla was able to place her daughter in a school that gave her individual attention so she could learn—that is, until the state took it all away. Now, the Goldwater Institute is fighting back on Kayla’s behalf. Watch Kayla share her story in a new video from the Goldwater Institute.