In the News

Senator Kayse Jama in the News

Deadly Heat Wave’s Lesson: ‘This Is the Future We All Face’ - Scientific American, 6/24/2022
“We needed to act quickly and immediately to make sure that the next heat wave we can save lives and protect our vulnerable populations.”

Oregonians React to Roe v. Wade DecisionThe Oregonian, 6/24/2022
“This is a terrifying moment for millions of Americans whose fears have become reality. However, we cannot be paralyzed by this decision. Now is the time to channel our anger and outrage into action.”

How to Celebrate World Refugee Day in Portland, BeyondKOIN News, 6/19/2022
"As a refugee, this is a day where I experience the power of community and the power of humanity."

Oregon Governor Brown Signs Bill Replacing 'Alien' in State LawsOregon Capital Chronicle, 3/28/2022
“Referring to immigrants and refugees as ‘aliens’ is an outdated, dehumanizing practice that stems from xenophobia and allows individuals to express bigotry without using overt racist language.”

Office of Immigrant and Refugee Advancement Update – Oregon Capital Chronicle, 3/17/2022
Oregon’s new Office of Immigrant and Refugee Advancement has a director who will hire three other staff and help Oregon’s newest foreign arrivals.

Plan to Increase Access to Air Conditioning Passes LegislatureSalem Statesman Journal, 3/6/2022
“To help protect more families, we must remove barriers to installing these appliances and incentivize the most efficient and effective devices.”

Members of Oregon's BIPOC Caucus Question PPS Budget Plans – OPB News, 3/4/2022
The five legislators posed four questions for the district to answer, including questions about how large the district’s budget shortfall is expected to be, how federal funds from the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER) are being spent, and what cuts are expected to administrators.

Farmworker Overtime Bill Advances in State LegislatureOregon Capital Chronicle, 2/25/2022

Oregon Secretary of State Will Audit Rental Assistance Program – The Oregonian, 2/8/2022
Sen. Kayse Jama, D-Portland and Rep. Julie Fahey, D-Eugene, chairs of the legislative housing committee, called for an audit of the program during the December special session to address evictions. The lawmakers wrote to Fagan at the time that they were “deeply troubled” by the lack of communication from the agency to landlords and renters and the inconsistent distribution of funds across counties.

2021 in Review: Diversity Makes Its Mark on CommunityPortland Tribune, 12/30/2021

Oregon Senate Votes to Curb Mandatory Overtime for Bakery WorkersThe Oregonian, 12/15/2021
“We know these are difficult times for workers in Oregon. We depend on our bakery workers in the state to feed our families. Bakery workers should not have to make the choice between being penalized for refusing last-minute overtime and picking up their kids from school.”

Lawmakers Gear Up for a Special Session on HousingOPB News, 12/3/2021
Sen. Kayse Jama, D-Portland, and Rep. Julie Fahey, D-Eugene, are the architects of the proposal lawmakers will be digging into in the special session.

Oregon Lawmakers Request $18 million to Support the Resettlement of 1,200 RefugeesOPB News, 11/26/2021
Legislative Emergency Board will consider the request based on a 12-month plan outlined by Rep. Khanh Pham and Sen. Kayse Jama who have led Oregon’s effort to welcome Afghan refugees.

Oregon Lawmakers Urge Gov. Kate Brown to Extend Eviction Protections for RentersOPB News, 10/6/2021
A letter drafted Wednesday by legislative housing committee chairs Rep. Julie Fahey and Sen. Kayse Jama outlines the need for intervention as the state continues to chip away at a massive backlog of applications for rental assistance.

Oregon Lawmakers Work with Immigration Nonprofits to Welcome Hundreds of Afghan RefugeesOPB News, 8/27/2021
Sen. Kayse Jama and Rep. Khanh Pham are at the center of an effort to coordinate responses between the nonprofits sector and government agencies as the local Afghan community details horrific accounts of family members trapped in Kabul.

Could This Year's Class of First-Term Lawmakers be Oregon's Most Effective? - OPB News, 6/14/2021
As the Oregon Legislature wrapped up the 2021 session last month with historic investments in just about every area, lawmakers agreed on one bold reality: This year’s “freshman” class might be the most effective in recent memory. In reviewing all that they’d accomplished over five months and looking at the impact first-term lawmakers had on the process, veteran legislators agreed that the rookies made an immediate difference.

Lawmakers OK More than $700 Million for Housing Needs - Oregon Capital Insider, 7/6/2021
Sen. Kayse Jama, D-Portland, was new both to the Legislature and to the Senate Housing and Development Committee. He said it was essential that lawmakers look beyond the years-long housing crisis and the effects of the pandemic. "The pandemic has only worsened existing inequities in our society, and there is so much clear data on housing disparities for communities of color,” Jama said. “This work will continue during the interim and into the 2022 session."

Oregon Senate passes the Sanctuary Promise Act - The World Link, 6/30/2021
“Many come to this nation and this state seeking refuge,” said Senator Kayse Jama (D-East Portland), who sponsored House Bill 3265. “They are trying to survive. They are trying to be free from violence, disaster and poverty. Ensuring they can interact with necessary support services will alleviate their struggles, it will remove fear and it will improve hope and trust that they live in a state that cares for their success, wellbeing and humanity.”

Oregon’s BIPOC Caucus Reflects on Major Achievements - The Skanner, 6/29/2021
The Monday after the 2021 state legislative session ended, nearly a dozen members of the Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) Caucus gathered remotely to discuss significant wins over a hectic few weeks many called historic.

Bills Focused on Improving the Lives of Immigrants and Refugees Pass During Last Days of Session - The Oregonian, 6/24/2021

Oregon lawmakers approve creation of new office to support immigrants and refugees - OPB News, 6/23/2021

Oregon Legislature Approves Expanded Options for Building of Affordable Housing - OPB News, 6/8/2021
The bill will make it easier for public housing authorities, nonprofit organizations, and religious institutions to push affordable housing projects through local zoning and conditional use development processes.

Bill to Expand Protections for Oregonians' Gender Identity Clears Oregon Senate - OPB News, 6/7/2021
Sen. Kayse Jama, D-SE Portland, said in his nonprofit work with the group Unite Oregon, he’s had the pleasure of meeting many people who either identify as gender nonconforming or a gender identity other than what they were assigned at birth. His experience is that people are who they are, and he supports HB 3041 because it seeks to codify that right for all Oregonians.

Oregon Legislature extends moratorium on foreclosures through June 30 - OPB News, 5/17/2021
Sen. Kayse Jama — who chairs the Senate’s committee on housing and development where the bill was workshopped — also rose to speak on behalf of HB 2009-b Monday before it received a vote, explaining that a work group has been poring over the bill since last year’s first special session where the original moratorium was implemented to ensure a robust discussion within the Capitol took place, as well as public engagement process.

HB 3230 protects against unjust deportation (Op-Ed by Senator Jama) - Statesman Journal, 5/14/2021
The legislation expands a two-year statewide pilot program that successfully protected more than 1,340 Oregonians from an unjust or unfair deportation and empowered 665 Oregonians who faced violence and persecution abroad to request asylum.

Oregon Legislature Extends Deadline for Tenants to Pay Back Rent Debt - Willamette Week, 5/11/2021
The bill was sponsored by Sen. Kayse Jama (D-Portland) and Rep. Julie Fahey (D-Eugene), who also championed HB 4401 in December—which allocated $150 million to landlord assistance and an extra $50 million to existing rental relief programs.

Oregon Lawmakers Call for Investigation of Harassment, Discrimination on Campuses - Lund Report, 5/5/2021
A bipartisan group of state lawmakers is pushing a bill to investigate how university administrations handle sexual abuse and racial discrimination complaints.

Newly-appointed state senators address county issues - Clackamas County, 5/4/2021

From resettlement to belonging: Opportunities for refugee leadership in civic participation - Unbound Philanthropy

Oregon State Sen. Kayse Jama's Ambitious Agenda - OPB News, 1/20/2021
This month, Oregon’s Legislature swore in its most diverse set of lawmakers to date. Among them is Kayse Jama. He’s been a prominent community organizer in the Portland metro area, and across the state, for about 20 years. In that time, he’s worked to lift up the voices of immigrant, low-income and historically marginalized Oregonians. Jama is an immigrant himself, having fled a war-torn Somalia two decades ago. OPB’s “All Things Considered” Host Tiffany Camhi spoke with the senator about some of his priorities in his first legislative session.

We Can Build a More Just and Dynamic Future in Oregon (Op-Ed by the BIPOC Caucus) - Pamplin Media Group, 1/25/2021