Press Releases

Latest Releases

Sen. Smith Cosponsors Legislation to Protect the Right of Women to Cross State Lines to Seek Abortion Care

WASHINGTON, D.C. [07/12/22] – U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) joined a group of her Democratic colleagues, including Senators Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), in introducing the Freedom to Travel for Health Care Act of 2022. This legislation would make it crystal clear that it is illegal for anti-choice states to limit travel for abortion services and would empower the Attorney General and impacted individuals to bring civil action against those who restrict a woman’s right to cross state lines to receive legal reproductive care. “After successfully overturning Roe and gutting 50 years of precedent that protected American women’s freedom to make their own decisions about abortion, extremist Republicans aren’t stopping there,” said Senator Smith. “We must do everything in our power to protect women’s constitutional right to travel to access lawful reproductive care. This bill will protect these women as well as the providers and others who help them get the care they need.”  “After a radical Supreme Court shredded a longstanding constitutional right for women, we have to fight back to make sure women in anti-choice states do not also lose their ability to travel for abortion care. Emboldened legislatures in red states are readying even more extreme restrictions, so Congress needs to act now to protect the freedom to cross state lines – a tenet of American life since the country’s founding,” said Senator Whitehouse. “It’s also extremely important that we step in to shield medical professionals in Rhode

U.S. Senators Smith and Lankford Introduce Legislation to Create Parity Within the Indian Health Care System

WASHINGTON, D.C. [07/12/22] – U.S. Senators Tina Smith (D-Minn.) and James Lankford (R-Okla.) introduced bipartisan legislation that would help achieve parity within the Indian Health System. The Urban Indian Health Confer Act will amend the Indian Health Care Improvement Act to require the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to confer with urban Indian organizations regarding health care for American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs) living in urban areas – a critical step that will create parity within the Indian Health System. “American Indian and Alaska Native people living in urban areas deserve an active voice in the policies that affect them,” said Sen. Smith, a member of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee. “That’s why I introduced the bipartisan Urban Indian Health Confer Act which will help to facilitate the open and free exchange of information and opinions between federal agencies and urban Indian organizations. It is a critical step towards creating parity within the Indian Health System.” “We need the Department of Health and Human Services to communicate with all the Indian health organizations, including those serving urban areas, which is currently a disconnect in the process for Indian health care,” said Sen. Lankford. “Oklahoma has the second-largest urban Indian patient population, proudly serving patients in clinics in Tulsa and Oklahoma City. Our common-sense bill ensures urban Indian organizations can partner with HHS just like any other federal health entity.” “Agencies have been operating as if only IHS has a trust obligation to AI/ANs, and that causes an undue burden to IHS to be in

U.S. Senator Tina Smith Presses Trump Administration to Ensure Federal Contractor Workers Receive Back Pay Amid Shutdown

WASHINGTON, D.C. [01/10/19]—Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.)—along with 33 of her fellow Senate Democrats—called on the Trump Administration to direct federal agencies to work with contractors to provide back pay to compensate contractor employees for wages lost during the current shutdown. While Sen. Smith is working on legislation to ensure low-wage federal contractor employees receive back pay, she and her colleagues are also urging the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to use existing authority to partner with federal contracting officers and use provisions to modify terms of contracts so employees receive lost wages. “Contract workers and their families

U.S. Senator Tina Smith’s Statement on Continued Fight to Secure Back Pay for Federal Contract Workers

WASHINGTON, D.C. [02/13/2019]—Tonight, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) released the following statement highlighting the need to secure back pay for federal contractor employees who went without pay during the recent government shutdown. Sen. Smith expressed disappointment that reports indicate her bipartisan legislation is not included in the budget agreement to avoid another shutdown, but said she will keep fighting for these workers. “During the longest federal government shutdown in history, thousands of Americans who serve as contractors to the federal government lost over one month’s pay, through no fault of their own. These are people who work as security guards and clean office buildings, and work

U.S. Senator Tina Smith, Colleagues Introduce Fair Compensation for Low-Wage Contractor Employees Act

WASHINGTON, D.C. [01/16/19]—Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.), along with her colleagues Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), Mark Warner (D-Va.), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), and Tim Kaine (D-Va.), introduced legislation to secure back pay for the federal contractor employees who continue to go without pay during the current government shutdown. The bill—the Fair Compensation for Low-Wage Contractor Employees Act—aims to help low-wage federal contractor employees—including janitorial, food, and security services workers—who have been furloughed or forced to accept reduced work hours as a result of the government shutdown. You can read a summary of the bill here, and you can

U.S. Sen. Tina Smith, Colleagues Push to End Shutdown Citing Over 4 Million Who Rely on Affordable Housing Programs

WASHINGTON, D.C. [1/18/19]–Yesterday, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.), in a letter to President Trump signed by her and over 170 Members of Congress, emphasized the direct and immediate consequences of the shutdown on housing security for millions of households across the country. Both the short-term operations and long-term viability of affordable housing programs are dependent on Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) rental assistance initiatives. An estimated 2.2 million low-income households are among those at risk of eviction, including housing for thousands of veterans, seniors, and people living with disabilities.  The letter was spearheaded by Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-Va.) and Rep.