FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 27, 2020
(AUSTIN)—The Texas Nurses Association honored Senator Judith Zaffirini, D-Laredo, as its Legislative Champion for her legislation promoting public health during the 86th Legislative Session (2019). Members presented the award to her recently (Jan. 24) at her Laredo district office.
Senator Zaffirini's Senate Bill (SB) 54 requires a study regarding the appropriate methods and standards for evaluating certain students participating in regional day school programs for the deaf. Her SB 1524, which passed as House Bill (HB) 448, would have required children under two to sit in rear-facing car seats, with certain exceptions, but, unfortunately, was vetoed. Senator Zaffirini also sponsored and passed HB 1869, with Rep. Stephanie Klick (R-Fort Worth), relating to the composition of the Governor's EMS and Trauma Advisory Council.
"I am delighted to receive this award from the Texas Nurses Association," Senator Zaffirini said. "Its support and rigorous advocacy for public health is critical for passing legislation."
Preparation for the legislative session that begins in 2021 is underway, and Senator Zaffirini encourages advocates to begin working with her now to enhance their future success. "My staff and I already are working with stakeholders to re-file worthy bills that failed and to develop new legislation. We welcome suggestions and collaboration, especially from constituents, whose feedback has resulted in some of my best legislation."
The senator has received more than 1,000 awards and recognitions for her professional and public service work, including being named Mr. South Texas by the Washington’s Birthday Association and Sister Judith, an Honorary Nun, by the Sisters of Mercy and Mercy Ministries. Second in seniority in the 31-member Texas Senate, she is the namesake of Texas A&M International University's Senator Judith Zaffirini Student Success Center and Medal of Excellence for Leadership and Scholarship, United ISD's Senator Judith Zaffirini Elementary School, Laredo Community College's Senator Judith Zaffirini Library, Lake Casa Blanca International State Park's Senator Judith Zaffirini Road and Edinburg's Judith Zaffirini Residential Treatment Center that focuses on fighting drug addiction.
Senator Zaffirini's legendary work ethic is reflected in her career-long 100 percent voting record and her perfect attendance in the Texas Senate since 1987, except for breaking quorum deliberately to prevent an untimely re-redistricting that the U.S. Supreme Court (2006) ruled violated the Voting Rights Act and disenfranchised voters in SD 21. She is the second highest-ranking senator and the highest-ranking woman and Hispanic in the Texas Senate.
SENATOR JUDITH ZAFFIRINI, D-LAREDO, receives the Legislative Champion Award from (L-R) Reverend Evaristo Escamilla, Sandra Lylia Garza-Escamilla, Irene Rosales, Carol A. Gunnoe and Rose A. Saldivar on behalf of the Texas Nurses Association. A tireless advocate for her constituents in Senate District 21, she prioritizes access to quality health care and education for the very young, the very old, the very poor, persons with disabilities and veterans.