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Legislative Women's Caucus marks budget victories

The final budget deal slated for a vote on Wednesday includes some of the top priorities for the California Legislative Women's Caucus, which successfully advocated for more child care funding and the removal of a controversial limit on welfare benefits.

"I'm very pleased," said Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson (D-Santa Barbara), the caucus chairwoman, after a news conference outside the Capitol. "Focusing on the needs of our families and our children in particular is so important in this state."

Once the budget is finalized, Jackson said lawmakers would continue to push to expand maternity and paternity leave for Californians.

Removing a limit on welfare benefits, a policy known as the maximum family grant, was a longtime goal of Sen. Holly Mitchell (D-Los Angeles). The rule prevented families from receiving additional benefits if they had a new baby while on welfare.

"It has only driven women and their children into deeper poverty," she said. With this year's change, "we have begun chipping away at the injustices of the past."

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