Dear Neighbors,Everyone deserves to live in a safe community. That’s why the House passed a set of bills this week to promote public safety and prevent crime. As Chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, I led House passage of one of the bills that will improve our response to individuals in crisis. The Mental Health Justice Act creates a grant program for local governments to hire, train, and dispatch mental health professionals when 911 is called because someone is experiencing a mental health crisis.
Everyone deserves to live in a safe community. That’s why the House passed a set of bills this week to promote public safety and prevent crime.
As Chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee, I led House passage of one of the bills that will improve our response to individuals in crisis. The Mental Health Justice Act creates a grant program for local governments to hire, train, and dispatch mental health professionals when 911 is called because someone is experiencing a mental health crisis.
We must ensure people have access to the support they need, especially in moments of crisis when emergency responders are called. By ensuring that a mental health professional is available in situations where a person is experiencing a mental health or disability related crisis, this legislation will help keep some of the most vulnerable members of our community safe.
Here’s a summary of the other bills in this legislative package:
The Invest to Protect Act funds the police with grants to help small, local law enforcement agencies retain and recruit officers. At the same time, this bill invests in strong guardrails and accountability measures, including training for de-escalation, responding to substance use disorders, and supporting survivors of domestic violence.
The VICTIM Act will bolster law enforcement’s ability to solve homicides, sexual assaults, shootings and other violent crimes. This a necessary step to ensure justice is served and improve trust in law enforcement.
The Break the Cycle of Violence Act invests in effective, evidence-based community violence intervention initiatives, which are designed to interrupt cycles of violence and retaliation and have proven to be highly effective at reducing rates of community violence, saving lives and taxpayer dollars.
Protecting Our Democracy
House Democrats also took action this week to protect our democracy. Extreme MAGA Republicans are already laying the groundwork to dispute future elections. We can't allow them to subvert free and fair elections.
I supported House passage of the Presidential Election Reform Act, because it will reform the Electoral Count Act to ensure that Congress counts votes as required by the Constitution. It also ensures that Congress receives a single accurate electoral certificate from each state, requires that States select electors in accordance with state law existing as of the date of the election, and provides a federal judicial remedy in the event that a state governor refuses to certify the lawful result of a presidential election. These are commonsense reforms that do not benefit either political party and will ensure that our elections remain free of political influence.
New Upgrades Coming to the New Brunswick Train Station
I joined Governor Murphy today to celebrate the important improvements that are coming to the New Brunswick Train Station. These upgrades to the station’s infrastructure will help make it safer and more accessible for commuters who rely on public transit. When we invest in our public transit system, we ensure that everyone has access to opportunities in our state. I look forward to seeing these upgrades move forward.
Reminder: New COVID-19 Booster Shots Now Available
Updated COVID-19 boosters to protect against the Omicron variant are now available in New Jersey for everyone who is fully vaccinated and over the age of 12. Click here to find a vaccine site near you and to schedule an appointment.