Legislative and Policy Advocacy

WDA’s legislative advocacy program is coordinated with the Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (WACDL).  We share a lobbyist, Neil Beaver, and staff oversee various issues and advocacy efforts under the guidance of our joint Legislative Committee.

Legislative Session 2021 

The 2021 Legislative Session is a normal session that began on January 11 and will end on April 25. Due to the COVID 19 pandemic, the session will be conducted remotely.

2021 Session Cutoff Calendar

April 11, 2021 was the final day for bills to be voted out of the opposite house.  From here until the end of the session on Sunday, April 25, “only initiatives and alternatives to initiatives, budgets and matters necessary to implement budgets, matters that affect state revenue, messages pertaining to amendments, matters of differences between the two houses, and matters incident to the interim and to the closing of the session may be considered.”  Although most policy bills are dead, including the “Blake fixes,” policy bills which have been deemed Necessary to Implement the Budget (NTIB) are exempt from the cut-off rules so we may see bills resurrected before the end of the session.

Final Bill Passage 2021

Bills Presumed Dead April 12 2021


WDA/WACDL Position Papers

HB 1026 firearms restoration
HB 1088 impeachmentSHB 1088 Brady
Gov Inslee sign HB1090 into law now
HB 1169 concerning sentencing enhancements
HB 1283 open carry criminal mischief
HB 1307 Concerning the drug offense sentencing grid
HB 1314 concerning veteran diversion from involuntary commitment
HB 1320 civil protection orders & SHB 1320 civil protection orders
HB 1384 changing offense levels for certain crimes
HB 1449 coercive control
HB 1507 Independent Prosecutor
SB 5036 Clemency
SB 5038 open carry demonstrations & SSB 5038 open carry demonstrations & SB 5038 open carry veto request
SB 5051 HB 1082 amendments
SB 5054 Felony DUI 15 year lookback & SSB 5054 Felony DUI 15 year lookback[1]
SB 5071 Creating Transition Teams
SB 5073 Involuntary Treatment Act & SB 5073 ITA WDA WACDL Proposed Amendments
SB 5083 Human Services Budget Proposals
SB 5118 Successful Reentry Jeopardized
SB 5123 Youth who commit sexual offenses and SB 5123 Community Letter
SB 5226 License Suspension Veto Request
SB 5210 Competency Restoration
SB 5293 Mental Health Sentencing Alternative & SSB 5293 Mental Health Sentencing Alternatives
SB 5327 Confidential Youth Tip Line
SB 5361 drug offender sentencing
5397 Improving Access to Behavioral Health Treatment
SB 5476 State v. Blake Decision & SB 5476 Blake Veto Request

Collaborative Documents

SHB 1282 Concerning allowed earned time for certain offenses
HB 1344 Allowing qualifying persons serving long sentences committed prior to reaching 25 years of age to seek review for possible release from incarceration
HB 1413
Joint Letter of Support – King County Facial Recognition Ban_
2021 ACLU-WA ADS Examples
2021 ACLU-WA Automated Decision Systems Backgrounder
SSB 5123 Advocate Letter Final

Action Alerts


Please contact Christie Hedman or Amy Hirotaka if you have any questions or are interested in our legislative work.

Amicus Work

WDA appears on behalf of indigent persons, public defenders and other criminal defense attorneys on issues relating to due process, access to justice, criminal defense and the rights of indigent persons. If you are handling a matter at the appellate level that you would like WDA to provide amicus briefing on, or to sign on to your amicus, please visit our Amicus Advocacy page.