Reject 5599, Sign Referendum 101

June 29, 2023


PDF version

On June 15, a letter was issued to pastors stating that the Washington State Catholic Conference (WSCC) did not have a position on Referendum 101, which would overturn Senate Bill 5599 (SB 5599). During the legislative session, the WSCC opposed SB 5599. We are updating our position on Referendum 101 to “support.” The WSCC supports this referendum to reject SB 5599.

At the discretion of pastors, signatures for this referendum may be collected at parishes. Parishioners must obtain approval from pastors prior to collecting signatures on church grounds. Signatures are due to the Secretary of State on July 15.

Explanation of SB 5599: Previously, licensed overnight shelters or licensed organizations providing services to homeless or runaway youth were required to contact a child’s parents if it was known that the child was away from home without permission. With the passing of SB 5599 earlier this year, parents do not need to be notified if a child is seeking “protected health care services.” Namely, if a youth is seeking an abortion or gender-affirming care, parents or legal guardians do not need to be notified. The WSCC opposed this bill during the legislative session.

We thank the faithful who have contacted us and indicated their willingness to take action to support Referendum 101. We appreciate your advocacy for the common good.

Should you have questions, please contact us at

In Christ,

Mario Villanueva

Executive Director

Washington State Catholic Conference