So glad that so many people could join us online for our Congressional Briefing on the #Yulin Dog Meat Festival. Lots of great activists came to talk about our efforts to #StopYulinForever.
There have been mixed reports coming out of China regarding the upcoming Yulin Dog Meat Festival. I sincerely hope that the #Yulin authorities take public action to end the Festival. I will continue to urge China to end its dog meat trade, and I urge Speaker Ryan and Majority Leader McCarthy to bring H.Res.30 to the floor without delay. Thank you to all of the activists who have helped spread the word about our resolution. We can't lose hope, and we must continue to move forward in this fight together.

I am absolutely heartbroken at the passing of my dear friend and colleague, Congresswoman Louise Slaughter. For 30 years, Louise poured every ounce of energy she had into serving her district and her constituents in upstate New York. She never hesitated to speak her mind, and she never wavered in espousing her beliefs. I will always be grateful for the time that I had to serve alongside her.

Louise was one of my dearest friends in Congress, and I am overcome with sadness by t...his tragic news. Her legacy speaks for itself. She was not just a champion of women’s rights; she was the champion of working families everywhere. Today, we have lost one of our fiercest public servants, and her absence will leave an unfillable void.

I offer my deepest condolences to Louise’s daughters, her family, her friends, her district, and her Congressional staff during this extremely difficult time.

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Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) made the following statement on the passing of Congresswoman Louise Slaughter, Ranking Member and Former Chairwoman of the House Rules Committee, and the Dean of the New York House Delegation:   “I am absolutely heartbroken at the passing of my dear friend and...

Since 2011, it is estimated that almost 500,000 Syrians have been killed with millions more displaced, creating a refugee crisis across Europe and the Middle East. Today, we will sadly mark the seventh anniversary of the Syrian Civil War, which is one of the bloodiest wars of the last 70 years.

I traveled to Syria in January 2010 and personally met with President Bashar al-Assad. As I pressed him on the importance of honoring the right of his people to exercise their civil ...liberties and fundamental freedoms, I knew immediately that he would not give in. Many others, like me, recognized this long before civil war erupted. And yet, years have passed without the necessary effort by the international community to stop the violence.

On May 28, 2013, I sent a letter to former President Barack Obama and Ambassador Susan Rice, urging them to support imposing a no-fly zone over Syria, particularly in light of the continued indiscriminate shelling of innocent civilians and the use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime. I renewed my calls for a no-fly zone to President Obama again on September 25, 2015.

What we have witnessed since the start of this civil war is indiscriminate, brutal attacks against civilians. The international community must no longer sit idly by and let more families be torn apart and more civilians become refugees.

According to the United Nations (UN), nearly 3 million Syrian children have lived their entire lives gripped by civil war. This is absolutely outrageous, and something needs to happen, and it needs to happen now!

It has been seven years, let me repeat myself, seven years, since this civil war began. This crisis, in which millions of innocent Syrians find themselves today, demands our full attention and fervent commitment to creating a strategy that will bring an end to the deplorable conditions facing the Syrian people. The need for immediate and strong action remains. With each passing day, the violence has grown more sectarian, militarized, and radicalized at the cost of innocent Syrian lives.

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Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) made the following statement on the seventh anniversary of the Syrian Civil War:   “Since 2011, it is estimated that almost 500,000 Syrians have been killed with millions more displaced, creating a refugee crisis across Europe and the Middle East.  Today, we ...

During the month of March, we recognize the importance of music education programs to the development of our nation’s students and youth. Music education supports learning in many areas, facilitating the development of language and reading skills as well as the spatial-temporal visualization skills that are necessary for math, engineering, architecture. Music opens doors and provides a valuable outlet for creativity. Every child from every walk of life should have the opportunity to study music in school, and I will continue to fight to ensure music education programs across the country get the funding necessary to support their students. #MIOSM

Congressman Alcee L. Hastings added a post from March 8 to their timeline.
March 8

As we celebrate #InternationalWomensDay, let us recommit ourselves to striving for wage parity, challenging stereotypes and bias, and celebrating the immeasurable achievements of women worldwide. We must never waver in our efforts to #PressforProgress, and must continue to build on the social, political and economic advancement of women worldwide. I am proud of the great progress we have made, and will continue to support this great effort.

Congressman Alcee L. Hastings added a post from March 1 to their timeline.
March 1

Today marks the beginning of National Women’s History Month, a time dedicated to honoring women and acknowledging the great triumphs and sacrifices women have made for our country. Women have been on the forefront throughout our nation’s history, advocating for equality under the law for all people. As we reflect on the extraordinary achievements of American women, let us continue working to make our country a more fair and tolerant place. I will continue fighting to level the playing field and provide all Americans with the opportunities they deserve.

Thank you Congressman Ted Deutch for organizing today’s meeting with Marjory Stoneman Douglas students to discuss meaningful and commonsense gun control reform. I am inspired by and proud of these students who are leading the charge for responsible gun laws. #MSDStrong

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Today, I sent a letter to Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran and Florida Senate President Joe Negron urging them to prioritize the repeal of the firearm preemption law that limits the ability of localities to implement sensible gun control measures. If the Florida State Legislature refuses to lead on gun safety, it should at the very least step aside so that local governments can fill the void and protect our State’s citizens.

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This week, I joined Congressman David Cicilline and 150 of my Colleagues in re-introducing the assault weapons ban in the House of Representatives. These weapons are made for the battlefield, and they have no place in our society.

Yesterday, I spoke with Reverend Al Sharpton about gun violence and the tragic shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. I am sick and tired of feeling the heartbreak of communities ripped apart by this violence. We cannot continue doing nothing.

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Our worst fears have been realized, and our community has been left shattered. The lives of 17 innocent individuals have been ripped away from us in a cowardly mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. I am heartbroken tonight and without words.

I am so grateful to all of the first responders who acted selflessly and without hesitation to prevent further loss of life, and am thankful for the teachers who did everything possible to keep their students safe.

There nothing I can say that will bring consolation to the families of the victims, nor to our community. I can only pledge that I will meet this tragedy with the fiercest of resolve. There have been 18 school shootings since the start of the year. This is not normal. This is not natural. This is not, and can never be, the cost of living in America.

The stranglehold of the gun lobby has gone on long enough. They have divided our country and washed their hands of responsibility, even as schools and neighborhoods bear the brunt of gun violence every single day. I am sick and tired of feeling the heartbreak of communities ripped apart by this violence.

I demand that President Trump takes decisive action to get guns off our streets. Democrats in Congress have tried and been blocked by Republicans, time and time again. This cannot be allowed to continue. The President is the leader of our country, and he must step up and tell his party that the time for inaction is over. We must end the violence, and we must take every step possible to make our schools and communities a safe place.

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Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) released the following statement on the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Shooting in Parkland, FL:

Our community has been shattered by another tragic and senseless act of violence. My prayers are with the victims and their families of this horrifying shooting.

First responders are on the scene at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and the suspected shooter is now in custody. I am monitoring the situation and will work with my colleagues in the Broward delegation to make sure the Sheriff's office has the resources that they need.

We are the only nation that suffers this type of violence on a nearly daily basis. Something needs to change!

The President’s FY19 budget is such a joke it’s barely worth commenting on. It cuts Social Security to pay for the border wall with Mexico. It includes a massive military buildup without addressing waste at the Pentagon. It includes a $250 billion cut to #Medicaid and $214 billion in cuts to #SNAP food assistance – and it still results in $7 trillion of new deficit spending. The WH’s own math shows that the #GOPTaxScam will not deliver the surpluses Republicans falsely claimed it would, instead adding trillions to the debt and putting us on course for a $25 trillion national debt within six years. #TrumpBudget

After ramming through a $1.5 trillion deficit-exploding #GOPTaxScam, President Trump's infrastructure plan urges states to increase property taxes, sales taxes, and tolls to pay for infrastructure investments. The President’s infrastructure plan, which provides $200 billion in direct investment over a decade, also cuts $206 billion from existing infrastructure programs. The Democratic #BetterDeal plan proposes five times more direct investment and would actually rebuild our infrastructure, rather than simply moving money around.

Thank you Randi Kaye and CNN’s HLN for your report on the dog meat trade across Asia and right here in the United States. My legislation banning the trade in our country and condemning the practice globally is pending before the House of Representatives. My office is in contact with the House Republican Leadership, and I continue to urge them to schedule votes on H.Res.401 and H.R.1406 without delay.

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Now in its 18th year, National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day plays a valuable role in mobilizing, educating, and reminding us of the troublingly disproportionate impact that this epidemic has upon African American men and women in our community. More than 1.2 million people are living with HIV/AIDS in the United States, nearly 500,000 of whom are Black.

African Americans battling this disease are also confronted by greater obstacles, in the form of disproportionately low to healthcare. The black community living with HIV/AIDS faces higher rates of homelessness, poverty, and incarceration, as well as difficulties in accessing preventative testing and treatment. Medical advances mean that people with HIV/AIDS are living longer and healthier lives, but we must not waiver in the fight to end new infections and provide better resources for those living with this disease.

I remain committed to working with my colleagues in Congress, healthcare providers, and community leaders to support HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment efforts. #NBHAAD #EndAIDS2030

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Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) released the following statement in recognition of the 18th Annual National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day:

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) gave millions of Americans the right to take leave. Twenty-five years later, only 15 percent of workers have access to paid family leave. Not having a national paid leave policy hurts workers and results in higher job turnover, lost wages, and billions in lost economic benefits. As we mark #FMLA25, it’s time for Congress to enact a national #PaidLeave standard.