D.C. Councilmembers discussed a range of topics in a Nov. 9 meeting that addressed nutrition for senior citizens and discrimination against women. (Courtesy Photo)

By Tashi McQueen, AFRO Political Writer,
Report For America Corps Member,
tmcqueen@afro.com

On Nov. 9, At-Large City Councilwoman Anita Bonds (D-DC) put four bills before the Committee on Housing and Executive Administration. 

The D.C. City Council meeting was virtual, with only Chairman Phil Mendelson and Councilman Robert White attending in person. 

A range of topics were covered, including better care for older residents, an established commission for D.C.waterways and putting an end to discrimination against working women.  

All bills were passed and will move out of the committee to be addressed in the council.

 B24-0996 – Senior Nutrition and Well-Being Equity Amendment Act of 2022

This legislation will require the Department of Aging and Community Living to look into the quality of food given to seniors that rely on the agency for nutrition service and train home aides. It also will establish a community task force composed of senior ambassadors from the community. Supporters of the bill hope to address the abuse and neglect of seniors.

“The solution is not only to provide awareness of the resources,” said Bond. “But the means to those resources.” 

B24-0419 – No Senior Hungry Omnibus Amendment Act of 2021

This bill demands the Department of Aging and Community Living to create a senior nutrition services communications plan. The department will have to carry out the senior food security plan and survey clients for food insecurity and malnutrition. The plan will include an annual report on the progression of the senior food security plan.

“This bill will help streamline the food and application process and establish communications between entities that provide nutrition for the elderly,” said Bonds. “ It is a costly bill but it is important to address senior hunger in the District.”

B24-0649 – Elimination of Discrimination Against Women 

This bill will amend the District of Columbia for Women Act of 1978 and require all District government agencies to do gender analysis report every four years and make training on gender and human rights available to all government employees. The bill aims to help improve the status of women in D.C. The bill will require leaders to be held accountable for fostering an inclusive environment as well.

Mendelson said this bill will go before the council between Dec. 15. 

B24-0617 – District Waterways

The bill will establish a water advisory commission that will make recommendations for the use of the property. The district has experienced economic growth according to Bonds, the complaint was that there is no cohesiveness in regard to the district’s waterways which the proposed commission will solve.

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