By Toni G. Atkins
Happy New Year, everyone! Sometimes January is a month that feels like a Monday, but there is a lot of energy and enthusiasm in the air in 2022.
It’s a new year, new laws are taking effect that help people into homes, jobs, and debt-free higher education. With the once-a-decade redistricting almost complete, many of my colleagues and I will welcome new communities and new constituents to represent. And in Sacramento we’re moving into a new—and temporary—workspace while the East Wing of the Capitol, where so much good has been accomplished for the people of California, is replaced by a safer and more accessible building. Please know, wherever my office is, my door is always open to the people of the 39th Senate District!
January marks the 49th anniversary of Roe v Wade, and the very real fear is there won’t be a 50th. I can tell you we are beyond motivated to protect Californians—and all who need abortion services and reproductive healthcare—from the vicious attacks being made on one of our most basic and personal rights.
Every January, as we celebrate the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., I remember the January when he moved his family into a housing project in Chicago to draw attention to the lack of affordable housing. In many ways, it is shameful how far we still have to go on the paths to justice that MLK pursued—and that is also a reminder we need to constantly do better.
January brings new challenges—along with existing ones. And I want to thank everyone for masking up inside the last couple weeks to counter the alarming rise in COVID-19 cases. A couple more weeks, and hopefully, we will have again navigated a treacherous part of this pandemic together.
There’s a lot to look forward to this month and this year, and I will do my best to keep you up to date with all the latest information on bills, the budget (so far the outlook is very good!), district events, and breaking news. And, of course, the occasional photos of Mia and Joey!
Here’s to a great 2022!
— Toni G. Atkins is President pro Tempore of the California Senate. Visit www.sd39.senate.ca.gov/contact to contact her.