The first Mexican-American woman elected to Congress, Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard is a political pioneer. The first Latina appointed to the House Appropriations Committee, the congresswoman serves on two subcommittees: Homeland Security, which oversees federal funding for immigration processing, border and port security, and emergency preparedness, and the Labor, Health and Human Services and Education Subcommittee, which oversees federal funding for public schools, workforce training, and health care initiatives. She is also a Senior Democratic Whip.
A national leader on public health, Congresswoman Roybal-Allard co-founded the bipartisan Congressional Study Group on Public Health. The first woman to chair the Congressional Hispanic Caucus (CHC), the congresswoman currently serves as the chairwoman of the CHC’s Health Care Task Force. As Task Force Chair she has championed efforts to pass health care reform, with a focus on improving the quality and affordability of health services, prioritizing prevention and reducing the escalating costs of health care.
The congresswoman is the sponsor of several measures to improve the health and wellbeing of women and children. In 2008, the Newborn Screening Saves Lives Act was signed into law to train doctors and nurses in newborn screening and educate parents about follow-up care. Congresswoman Roybal-Allard has also introduced the Maximizing Optimal Maternity Services for the 21st Century Act to prioritize maternity care by establishing an Interagency Coordinating Committee charged with promoting proven medical practices for healthy mothers and babies.
Dedicated to protecting children and teenagers across the country, Congresswoman Roybal-Allard has introduced the Children’s Act for Responsible Employment (CARE) to address abusive and exploitive child labor practices in agriculture. She also authored the STOP (Sober Truth on Preventing) Underage Drinking Act and the Security and Financial Empowerment (SAFE) Act, which were signed into law in 2006 and 2008 respectively. The STOP Act creates an interagency coordinating committee to address underage drinking; a parent focused media campaign; federal research on underage drinking prevention; and community grants to fight underage drinking. The SAFE Act promotes financial stability and personal security for survivors of domestic violence by establishing emergency leave and employment nondiscrimination provisions.
Most notably, Congresswoman Roybal-Allard is an original co-author of the DREAM Act to ensure undocumented students can get on a path to citizenship, attend college in the United States and qualify for in-state tuition. The DREAM Act is part of the Congresswoman’s larger “Immigration Fairness Agenda”—a package of measures intended to safeguard the rights and dignity of individuals and families impacted by our broken immigration system. Congresswoman Roybal-Allard is committed to working with her colleagues in Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform legislation this year.
The congresswoman is the eldest daughter of the late Honorable Edward R. Roybal and Lucille Beserra Roybal. She is married to Edward T. Allard, III. Together, they have four children and seven grandchildren.