Senator Leyva Honored as American Red Cross “Legislator of the Year”
SACRAMENTO – As part of the American Red Cross’ annual advocacy day efforts in Sacramento, the American Red Cross honored Senator Connie M. Leyva (D-Chino) with its “Legislator of the Year” award for her dedication to the lifesaving mission of the organization.
“I am truly honored to receive this ‘Legislator of the Year’ award from the American Red Cross, a humanitarian organization that provides critical emergency assistance to those in greatest need in communities across the Inland Empire and California,” Senator Leyva said. “It was my honor to lead efforts in 2017 to make sure that patients’ lives are not put at risk due to the delayed delivery of blood. I appreciate the American Red Cross’ strong support of Senate Bill 406 last year which will undoubtedly help to save people’s lives.”
Last year, Senator Leyva authored, and Governor Jerry Brown signed, Senate Bill 406 which helps to save the lives of patients by ensuring that blood transport vehicles are able to make timely blood deliveries in California. SB 406 took effect on January 1, 2018 and allows blood transport vehicles to use high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes to deliver blood to patients in need. The American Red Cross receives, on average, 120 urgent blood orders each day – referred to as ‘STAT’ orders. STAT orders must arrive within 60 minutes, yet traffic congestion can back up freeways for hours at a time and make it difficult for blood delivery vehicles to arrive in the specified timeframe.
“The Red Cross is pleased to honor Senator Leyva as its Legislator of the Year for authoring SB 406, which would allow vehicles transporting life-saving blood supply to access HOV lanes,” said Gary Strong, CEO of the American Red Cross Gold Country Region. “We appreciate the Senator’s leadership and dedication to the Red Cross as we fulfill our lifesaving mission.”
The American Red Cross’ mission statement notes that the organization ‘prevents and alleviates human suffering in the face of emergencies by mobilizing the power of volunteers and the generosity of donors.’