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State Senator

Marilyn Moore

Representing Bridgeport, Monroe & Trumbull

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Senator Moore Votes For Police Accountability, Absentee Ballot, Insulin Price-cap Legislation

Special Senate Session Gives Final Approval to Requested Public Policies


HARTFORD – State Senator Marilyn Moore (D-Bridgeport) today joined with her colleagues in a special session of the Connecticut State Senate to approve a host of new public policy initiatives that the public demanded in order to improve police interactions with minority residents, expand the use of absentee ballots during the COVID-19 pandemic, cap out-of-pocket costs for lifesaving insulin, and continue telehealth medical consultations during the coronavirus crisis.

The bills – which were approved by the House of representatives last week – now head to Governor Lamont, who is expected to sign them into law.

"Today, the Senate stood on the right side of history," said Senator Moore. "After months of protests demanding accountability for police, we finally passed legislation that seeks to bring concrete reform to police departments in Connecticut. It's long overdue and there are still many systemic issues we need to address including police accountability, but I'm proud that the voice of activists and organizers across the state and in our community were heard. While we did not get the support to monitor absentee ballots in Bridgeport, I will continue to request the Secretary of State and the Governor to do it through Executive Order. All four of the bills passed will make residents safer in their communities and protect their health as we continue to endure this pandemic and I'm glad the legislature took action and addressed these critical issues."

Highlights of the bills approved today by Senator Moore include:

Increasing Police Accountability with the Public
Prompted by the demands of citizens outraged by the murder of George Floyd, this bill provides additional accountability for police departments across Connecticut to improve public interactions, particularly with minority residents. Highlights include:

  • Changes in the membership of the Police Officer Standards and Training Council (POST), which provides certifications and trainings to police officers in Connecticut. POST will be reconstituted to include persons impacted by the judicial system and towns of various sizes.
  • POST will issue an annual report on police department efforts to recruit minority officers, and it will develop new crowd control policies, require implicit bias training, and ensure that police disciplinary records are subject to Freedom of Information Act requests.
  • Uniformed police officers must have their names and badge numbers readily visible on all outer garments.
  • Cities and towns can create civilian review boards, which will have subpoena power through their local legislative bodies (i.e. Board of Selectmen).
  • Body and dashboard cameras will be mandatory for any officer interacting with the public.
  • Chokeholds, strangleholds and other tactics restraining oxygen and blood flow are banned, and officers will have whistleblower protections to report excessive use of force.
  • A new Independent Office of the Inspector General will conduct use of force investigations.

Temporarily Expanded Absentee Voting
This bill allows Connecticut citizens who are concerned about contracting the coronavirus at a polling location this year to vote instead by mail – an option which had previously been denied them. Connecticut law currently only allows state residents the right to vote by absentee ballot for six specific reasons:

  • If the voter is on active duty with the U.S. Armed Forces
  • If the voter will be absent from town during the entire time that polls are open
  • If the voter is ill
  • If the voter has a physical disability which prevents them from voting in person
  • If the voter's religion prohibits them from voting that day
  • Or if the voter is working at the polls in a primary, election or referendum

The global COVID-19 pandemic, which has infected more than 48,000 people in Connecticut and killed more than 4,400 state residents, has raised concerns about standing in line at the polls, or voting in a crowded polling location – especially for the elderly and those with underlying medical conditions, who are particularly susceptible to the coronavirus.

The new bill amends Connecticut law for 2020 only to allow for absentee voting due to "the sickness of COVID-19." The bill also allows any person who is in line to vote before polls close at 8 p.m. to access Connecticut's "same-day registration" procedure at that polling location, as long as they meet all of the state's voter eligibility requirements (existing state law only allows for same-day voter registration from 6 a.m. until 8 p.m. at specific locations in town, but then the voter must proceed to their own local polling place in order to cast their vote.)

Capping the Price of Insulin and Related Supplies
The bill caps a person's out-of-pocket cost of insulin at $25 per month, caps noninsulin drugs like glucagon at $25 per month, and caps diabetic equipment and supplies (such as blood glucose test strips, glucometers, lancets, and syringes) at $100 per month. The bill also authorizes pharmacists to prescribe and dispense up to a 30-day supply of 'emergency' insulin if a person has less than a seven-day supply and would otherwise not be able to obtain any lifesaving insulin.

Telehealth
The bill continues for the foreseeable future the temporary waiver of customary restrictions on online medical health care services ("telehealth") so that during the COVID-19 pandemic more patients can be attended to in the comfort of their own home.



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