Here's a look at some of the key battles in the states over the past week.
California: The Senate Education Committee passed a state DREAM Act bill that would give students who are U.S. citizens and California residents who had to live in another country due to a parent’s deportation the opportunity to qualify for in-state tuition and state financial aid programs. The state Senate is holding hearings on a bill to establish online voter registration. Finally, the House is holding hearings on a bill that would require county jails and state prisons to provide inmates with affidavits of voting registration and an up-to-date version of the secretary of state’s voting rights guide.
Colorado: The governor signed into law a state DREAM Act that allows undocumented Colorado high school graduates to pay the in-state tuition rate at state colleges and universities. The legislature passed a bill that would allow voters to vote by mail and would allow voter registration through Election Day. This bill now goes to the governor for signature.
Hawaii: A domestic workers' bill of rights was passed into law, making it illegal to discriminate against anyone employed as a domestic worker based on race, gender, sexual orientation and other factors.
Maryland: The governor signed into a law a bill that increases the number of early voting days and establishes same-day voter registration.
Minnesota: The Senate passed a state DREAM Act bill that would allow undocumented students to qualify for both in-state tuition and state financial aid programs if they attended a Minnesota high school for at least three years and graduated. The bill is now before the state House.
North Dakota: The governor signed a bill into law that denies unemployment insurance benefits to workers who are locked out from their jobs.
Vermont: The state legislature passed a bill that would give home health care workers the right to organize and collectively bargain. The AFT chapter in Vermont is calling for the state's residents to contact their legislators to pass a similar bill that would allow early educators to organize and negotiate collectively.