Assemblymember Kansen Chu Kicks Off 2020 with Bill Package to Hold Utility Companies Accountable and Break Down Stigma Around Mental Health

Monday, January 6, 2020

SACRAMENTO (CA) -- With the start of a new decade and many issues facing California, Assemblymember Kansen Chu (D-San Jose) introduces legislation to improve the quality of life for those living in our state.

This week, Assemblymember Chu plans to introduce four pieces of legislation: two to address the power shutoffs enforced by utility companies and two to continue his efforts promoting mental health support.

“I am excited to be back in Sacramento with many proposals to improve the lives of my constituents. About 3 million Californians were left in the dark last October with little to no support from the very same companies they pay monthly. The poor communication, sloppy rollout, and lack of support and proper compensation from utility companies were unacceptable. I want to hold these companies accountable and ensure that these power shutoffs are not the norm.”

Chu will introduce legislation to require power utility companies to provide information regarding power shutoffs in languages catering to individual ratepayers and accommodations for those who rely on electricity for their medical needs. The second bill in his legislative package will provide the California Public Utility Commission with the authority to determine whether or not a shutoff event is necessary and reasonable and if a utility company responsible should compensate those impacted.

“I have been working to bring better mental health support to youth and adults and this year, I am working on legislation to further break down stigma. Mental health struggles cannot be ignored and for many, it is hard to take time away to seek the services necessary. I want to make it easier for people to take time away from work or school to seek help and recover without major repercussions. These bills are an important step in bringing mental health into our everyday conversations and promoting help-seeking.” 

Assemblymember Kansen Chu will introduce legislation that states such as Utah and Oregon are already implementing to allow for mental health struggles to be used as an excuse to take time off from school. In addition, Chu will introduce legislation that will include behavioral health as a reason to take a paid sick day.

Assemblymember Kansen Chu is proud to represent the 25th Assembly District, comprised of the cities of Fremont, Milpitas, Newark, Santa Clara and San Jose.

CONTACT: Annie Pham, (916) 319-2025

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