August 2016 Newsletter
Join me in helping an East San Jose neighborhood sparkle. The Tully-Ocala Community Neighborhood Association, San Jose Vice Mayor Rose Herrera, and I are sponsoring a clean-up. We'll be equipping volunteers with trash bags, trash sticks, gloves and safety vests as we fan out to collect garbage in the area. The clean-up is a great way to meet your neighbors while making a difference for our city.
Saturday, Sept.10; 9 a.m.-12 p.m. (registration begins 8:30 a.m.)
Boys & Girls Club of Silicon Valley
2195 Cunningham Ave., San Jose
For more information, please call my district office (408) 558-1295. To RSVP, click here.
COMBATING SEXUAL ABUSE
In the wake of an the extraordinarily lenient sentence of Brock Turner, who was convicted of sexually assaulting an unconscious woman on the Stanford campus, I and other legislators sent a letter to the California Commission on Judicial Performance requesting it to examine whether the presiding judge engaged in prejudicial misconduct. Turner is scheduled to be released in early September and placed on three years probation after serving three months of a six-month sentence. Prosecutors had sought a six-year sentence for Turner, who was convicted on three felony counts.
The sentence handed down to Turner is disturbing because it minimized the depravity and seriousness of the crimes while undermining a nationwide effort to stop campus rape. Women college students, ages 18 to 24, had the highest rate of rape and sexual assaults compared with women in all other age groups, according to a U.S. Department of Justice report.
Helping survivors of sex abuse to obtain justice and preventing sex crimes are priorities for me. The trauma inflicted on the victims can last a lifetime.
Two years, I voted to pass the "Yes Means Yes" law to help public colleges and universities clarify and improve their handling of rape allegations. This year, I am co-authoring AB 2888 (Low, Hill, Dodd) to eliminate the possibility of probation for people convicted of sex assault, legislation that would have put prevented the sentence received by Brock Turner.
I am also a co-author on SB 813 (Leyva), legislation aimed at abolishing the criminal statute of limitations for sex crimes such as rape, sodomy, lewd or lascivious acts, and continuous sexual abuse against a child. Two years ago, I changed the law by passing SB 926 to raise the statute of limitations from age 26 to 40 for victims who were sexual abused as minors to seek criminal charges.
Since 2012, I have introduced bills enabling survivors of sexual assault to obtain justice against the abusers, seeking proposals to expand the civil statute of limitations to allow victims more time to file for damages and to also ban secret lawsuit settlements that serve to hide the activities of pedophiles from the public.
In 2013, the Governor signed into law my bill to require school officials to consult with law enforcement and parents before allowing a registered sex offender to volunteer at campus activities. I introduced Senate Bill 326 after a group of concerned parents whose children who were enrolled at a local school reached out to me after they learned a convicted child molester obtained permission to participate as an unsupervised volunteer at school activities.
In 2014, I introduced Audrie's Law to reform the sentencing of juveniles convicted of sexual assault. Audrie's Law, which was approved by the Legislature and the governor, increases courtroom transparency. It also mandates convicted juveniles to complete sex offender treatment programs if they are available in their county. In addition, juveniles convicted of rape, sodomy or oral copulation no longer have the option of paying a fine or participating in community service or a treatment program in order for charges to be dismissed.
The law was named after Audrie Pott, a 15-year-old Saratoga High student who committed suicide after she was sexually assaulted while unconscious and photos of her were disseminated electronically. Her parents came to me with the bill idea and played important roles in advancing the bill.
In last year's state budget, I supported setting aside $10 million in grants that were made available to community organizations that sheltered victims of human trafficking. I voted again to add another $10 million for the same purpose in the 2016-17 budget.
CHILD SAFETY IN CARS
I will be hosting a Child Car Seat Safety Clinic next month with trained professionals who will inspect your child's car seat and ensure it is correctly and securely attached. You'll also receive information on how to protect your children in vehicles. Joining me as co-sponsors of the free clinic are Councilmember Magdalena Carrasco, the California Highway Patrol, the Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Stanford, and Stanford Children's Health.
Child Car Seat Safety Clinic
Saturday, Sept. 24; 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Target (parking lot)
450 N. Capitol Ave., San Jose
No appointments; first come, first served. For more information, please contact Domingo.Candelas@sen.ca.gov or call (408) 558-1295.
My office is looking for college-level interns who would like to gain valuable work experience at my district offices in Campbell.
These internships provide students with a great opportunity to get involved in State government, develop useful job skills, and even get a head start on a career in public service. Students can gain experience in a professional work environment, build their resumes, and have the opportunity to network with professionals in a number of fields.
The qualities and skills sought in applicants are excellent writing; initiative; attention to detail; reliability; interpersonal skills; and proficiency in typing.
An intern's responsibilities include: data entry; research; handling inquiries from constituents; and community outreach - such as staffing events and projects.
Interns are also expected to work an occasional weekend or evening event.
For more information contact Senior Field Representative Domingo Candelas in the Senate District 15 local office by phone at (408) 558-1295 or by emailing your resume to Domingo.Candelas@sen.ca.gov. This is an unpaid position.