South Carolina statehouse

Current Legislative Issues

2019 NASW-SC Policy Agenda

The committee is organizing advocacy around the following items:

S194 Prostitution Offenses

  • Similar (S 0023, H 3074, H 3296)
  • NASW-SC supports the creation of an affirmative defense for prostitution charges when the person charged is a victim of human trafficking.
  • NASW-SC supports harsher punishments for individuals charged with soliciting sex from a trafficked or otherwise vulnerable person.
  • This bill has crossed over, meaning the Senate passed it. Now it is in the House judiciary committee
  • Jim Manning

H3289: Personhood; H3020: Fetal Heartbeat

  • Similar (S 0485, H 3920); Similar (S 0032
  • NASW-SC supports the Roe v Wade precedent protecting legal access to safe, medical abortion, and the right of every individual to make reproductive healthcare decisions with their doctor. 
  • Personhood, and similar bills, are in the judiciary committee. Fetal Heartbeat is out of committee with favorable recommendation. Reach out to your representative to voice your opinion.
  • Cheryl Lynn Veland

H3304: Voting Machines

  • Similar: (S 0374, H 3616, H 4293)
  • Background: poll watchers in 2018 reported voting machine errors that may have led to unintended straight party tickets 
  • NASW-SC supports the use of scannable paper ballots, which are less expensive to administer than the current all-electronic system, and have been shown to improve election transparency and accountability.
  • This bill, and all similar bills, are in the judiciary committee. No scheduled meetings at this time.
  • Angela McWhite

Deregulation of utilities

  • Background: The Dominion purchase of SCE&G projected to cause hardship among low-income residents of the midlands. Terms of Dominion’s purchase leaves opportunities for residents of the rest of the state to face similar circumstances.
  • No legislation pending.
  • NASW-SC opposes Duke Energy’s proposed mandatory fee increase, which disproportionately burden low-income customers and seniors, and remove conservation incentives. 
  • Carla Damron

The committee has identified the following items as “of interest”:

H3298: Safe Harbor for Exploited Minors

  • NASW-SC members have historically been divided on the issue of placing minors in protective custody when trafficking is suspected. Some hold the opinion that this document subject to change throughout session. - Last edited 4/8/19
  • Safe Harbor proposals violate the least-restrictive principle, while others (especially those in child welfare) feel benefit of ensuring safe housing of those children supersedes this principle.
  • Committee members are encouraged to follow their own conscience in advocating on this issue.

H3369: Child Marriage Loophole

The committee has determined that this issue is progressing satisfactorily

H3292: SC Access to Health Care Act

The committee has determined that there is insufficient movement on this issue to prioritize it.

NASW-SC members have brought the following items to our attention, which do not align with this year’s priorities. Please contact the indicated NASW-SC member if you are interested in this topic.