Defund the Kirkland Police?!

We’ve all been hearing a lot about the “Defund the Police” movement. How does it apply in Kirkland? Does racist policing happen in Kirkland, too?

Our September member meeting was all about:

  • the national campaign to defund the police
  • the history of policing and race
  • an overview of policing in Kirkland
  • the question: can the police be reformed?

Here are the slides that people have asked for most:

After the racist KPD incident at Menchie’s, in which KPD asked a Black customer to move along, KPD released data on the 911 calls they get regarding “unwanted subjects.” This does not include trespassing — it’s just 911 calls from businesses who don’t want a person in their shop.
After the murder of George Floyd by a Minnesota police officer, KPD released data on their uses of force over the last couple of years. This is the breakdown by race.
Pulling the above two sources together, we find that Black Kirklanders are roughly 20 times more likely to experience police violence, 18 times more likely to be reported as “unwanted” by Kirkland business owners, and 36 times more likely to end up with a police report as an “unwanted subject.”

And here is the entire slide deck!

Statement on Defunding the Police

July 2, 2020

Indivisible Kirkland stands in solidarity with Black-led organizations calling for defunding the police and investing in community wellness, particularly in programs that will positively impact Black, brown, and indigenous communities.  Previous efforts at changing policing have not worked, leaving us “trapped on a treadmill of reform” (Angela Davis).  Defunding the police, through efforts such as those explained in #8toAbolition, will stop the treadmill and create real change.

“There is a clear need to rebalance power between the police and the communities they are supposed to protect. We shouldn’t be handing out unlimited funding to local police departments that have proven over and over again that they are going to use that money to inflict violence on Black communities. Instead, we should call on our city leaders to cut funding for police departments, and use that money to invest in meeting Black and brown community’s needs. That means taking money out of police budgets to make sure people have well-funded schools, good living-wage jobs, affordable housing, and more”

— Indivisible National

BLM-Seattle/King County tells us that to divest from policing and invest in communities we should: 

  • create affordable housing
  • bolster mental health services
  • end youth incarceration
  • fully fund education
  • create police-free schools.  

Indivisible Kirkland pledges to support the organizations, with particular emphasis on Black-led groups, who are working to defund the police and invest in marginalized communities. Our support comes in the form of financial support, policy advocacy at the local and state levels, and amplifying the work that Black and brown leaders are doing in our community. 

For more information on defunding the police, please utilize these resources:

Indivisible’s Position Paper on School Resource Officers

Skip straight to our petition at change.org/NoPoliceInLWSD!

The death of George Floyd at the hands of police officers in Minneapolis has once again focused national attention on systemic problems of police overreach, brutality, and lack of accountability. Around the country, school districts are acting to sever their relationships with local law enforcement, in order to protect our teens and tweens from the risks of exposure to the police and criminal justice systems.

As parents and community members of the Lake Washington School District, we are asking LWSD to demonstrate our community’s commitment to social justice and racial equity by ending the SRO program in our schools. It is time to stop spending our limited educational resources on armed police presence, and instead invest that money in behavioral health services and restorative justice practices that genuinely keep our students safe while affirming their rights and dignity.

Benefits and Risks of SRO Programs

SRO programs spread through the US in the 1990s and 2000s, tasked with decreasing criminal activity on school campuses and preventing school shootings. However, research has consistently failed to find evidence that SRO programs decrease either school shootings or general school crime. (See, for example, “The Impact of School Policing,” “Does more policing make middle schools safer?”, “What do we know about the effects of school-based law enforcement on school safety?”.)

Meanwhile, research has found serious downsides to SRO programs. In many districts, introducing SRO programs has greatly increased the number of at-risk students who enter the criminal justice system. We commend LWSD on the steps it has taken to mitigate these risks, including keeping school discipline in the hands of school staff. However, studies find that SRO programs create a school-to-prison pipeline even in districts where steps are taken to ensure not all school behavior problems are reported as crimes (Students, police, and the school-to-prison pipeline).

SRO programs can even decrease students’ academic performance. A recent quasi-experimental study in Texas found that “exposure to a three-year federal grant for school police is associated with a 2.5 percent decrease in high school graduation rates and a four percent decrease in college enrollment rates” (Patrolling public schools). The same month, a New York City study found that greater exposure to community policing significantly decreased Black boys’ test scores (Aggressive policing and the educational performance of minority youth).

Given this research, SRO programs can no longer be considered an evidence-based best practice. The benefits simply do not outweigh the risks.

Advocates of SRO programs may point to less-tangible benefits, such as positive mentoring relationships between students and police. We recognize that SROs can and have made a positive impact in the lives of some of our community’s young people.

However, we also have to take seriously what activists and policy experts of color tell us about the negative intangible effects of overpolicing on Black youth and other youth of color (particularly children with undocumented family members). “It’s a very specific group of people who feel safe with police, but most black and brown children do not feel safe with police in schools,” says Jackie Byers, executive director of the Black Organizing Project.

Closer to home, one King County student said, “School seems like a prison. You have police. You have all these security guards. There are security cameras everywhere you go, in your class and even outside the bathroom. They treat you like you’re always about to do something. It feels like everyone has it out for you” (Students not suspects).This certainly does not describe the learning environment we want for our children.

Alternatives to SRO Programs

Happily, we do not need to maintain a full-time armed police presence in our schools in order to keep our students safe and ensure they have positive mentoring relationships with professional helpers. Alternative programs, such as social-emotional learning programs and positive behavior management strategies have been shown to increase school climate and decrease problematic behaviors (School Resource Officers). The Dignity in Schools campaign, among others, has written many model policies detailing how to implement school safety and behavior policies without subjecting our students to unnecessary policing (Why Counselors, Not Cops?). School counselors, social workers, and other behavioral and emotional health professionals play a crucial role in ensuring safe schools and crisis response. By reinvesting our SRO budget in social workers, we can ensure that students facing behavioral and emotional challenges continue to have positive role models and mentors in the school. Unlike SROs, mental health professionals are trained in helping students learn prosocial strategies for dealing with their problems, using approaches that are strengths-based, culturally appropriate, and trauma-informed.

Refocusing resources on mental and behavioral health programs has additional benefits, too. The ACLU points out these programs can protect students from depression and suicidality — dangers that are far more likely than a school shooting (Cops and no counselors). LWSD currently falls far short of the American School Counselor Association’s recommended 250:1 student-to-counselor ratio, making this an important place to invest our limited school resources (State by state student-to-counselor ratio maps).

Our tweens and teens who are struggling with behavioral and social/emotional challenges deserve to be aided by well-trained mental health professionals, not armed law enforcement.

Let’s use this moment to reexamine what really keeps kids safe in school. Let’s commit our resources to truly effective ways to help them learn and grow.

We call on Lake Washington School District to:

  1. End the regular presence of sworn officers and armed security in LWSD schools.
  2. Reallocate this funding to school counselors, social workers, and other positive behavior intervention.
  3. Terminate all current memoranda of understanding with local law enforcement and replace them with agreements that severely restrict the circumstances under which schools can allow police into schools.
  4. Form a task force to examine Dignity in Schools’ model code, and to propose modifications to LWSD policy to bring us into alignment with practices that avoid criminalization of students and protect them from unnecessary entanglement with law enforcement.

Take Action

IKWA First Meeting of 2019!

A giant, heartfelt thank you to everyone who gave up a sunny Saturday afternoon to sit in a darkened library to participate in Indivisible Kirkland’s first member meeting of 2019!

This 90-minute meeting was jam packed with both people and information! We were so excited to see a full house with both familiar and new faces!

The agenda consisted of the items below:

  • LOOKBACK @ 2018
  • UPDATES: Gun Safety, SROs, Finding Solutions, Kirkland
    City Council, LWSD School Board, Indivisible Kirkland
    Open Positions, Climate Actions, New Look for Member
    email.
  • 2019 LEG SESSION: Indivisible States/IK’s Lobby Timeline
  • STRIKE a POSE: Group Photo

We were stoked that State Representative Shelley Kloba of LD1 chose to attend this update. We were gratified by her words of encouragement re: the importance of grassroots advocacy. We were also pleased to be joined by Amy Steele Falcone, Adam White and Uzma Butte. Amy and Adam serve on Kirkland’s Human Services Commission and Uzma serves on Kirkland’s Park Board. Thank you all for your service to our community.

Also a big thanks to those who have accepted roles as Observers, Issue Trackers and soon-to-be Community Service Coordinator. Have an idea on how you’d like to contribute…please let us know. We’re interested in creating right-sized opportunities for people.

Our next meeting will be held on Sunday, February 10th @ 2:00 pm at Kingsgate Library. Hope to see you there!

Calls to Action – OLD

**Our Action Items are now shared over email and on our Facebook page.  To register for our email list, please use the tool on the bottom of this page or email us at info@ikwa.info.

As always, you can check our calendar for upcoming events! 


Action Item (10/2/18)

The City of Kirkland officially endorsed I-1639, the gun safety initiative from the Alliance for Gun Responsibility. Kirkland is the FIRST city in Washington to do this! Let’s ask them to take the same step forward in addressing climate change by endorsing I-1631!

I-1631, Protect Washington Act:  This initiative charges a pollution fee on the largest corporate polluters and uses the revenue to invest in clean energy, clean transportation, clean water, and healthy forests. Attend the public hearing on Tuesday, October 2 at 7:30pm during the Kirkland City Council meeting to show the Council that you support its efforts to officially endorse I-1631.  If possible, please wear green.  (To learn more about this initiative:  https://yeson1631.org/learn/.) For more details on Tuesday’s hearing:   https://www.facebook.com/events/399959337203459/. The Kirkland City Council meetings take place at Kirkland City Hall (123 5th Ave 98033).

Action Items (9/14/18)

1) Donate supplies or time to help local refugee families during Welcoming Week:

In honor of Welcoming Week, Indivisible Kirkland is gathering supplies for kitchen and bathroom starter kits for newly arrived local refugee families. Many refugees arrive in the U.S. with next to nothing, but we can help them rebuild their lives by providing some much-needed items. 

We need help gathering supplies, but we also need help organizing supplies and writing welcoming notes, so there are several ways to get involved.

Use this link to sign up:  https://www.signupgenius.com/go/508084daeac22a4fd0-support.

Welcoming Week is a national movement to create welcoming, diverse communities.  To find more Welcoming Week events, check the Eastside Refugee & Immigrant Coalition website:  http://ericmembers.org/welcoming-week-2/.

The City of Kirkland is considering supporting two state-wide initiatives that will be on the ballot in November. Please consider attending these public hearings to show your support for the City’s efforts:

a) I-1639, Safe Schools, Safe Communities:  Attend the public hearing on Tuesday, 9/18 at 7:30pm during the Kirkland City Council meeting to show the Council that you support its efforts to officially endorse I-1639, the gun safety initiative from the Alliance for Gun Responsibility.  Few cities have taken this step, and we need to show Kirkland that the community supports them in this endeavor.  If possible, please wear orange.  (To learn more about this initiative: https://yeson1639.org/learn-more/.)

b) I-1631, Protect Washington Act:  This initiative charges a pollution fee on the largest corporate polluters and uses the revenue to invest in clean energy, clean transportation, clean water, and healthy forests. Attend the public hearing on Tuesday, October 2 at 7:30pm during the Kirkland City Council meeting to show that Council that you support its efforts to officially endorse I-1631.  If possible, please wear green.  (To learn more about this initiative: https://yeson1631.org/learn/.)

The Kirkland City Council meetings take place at Kirkland City Hall (123 5th Ave 98033).

Mark your calendar for our Fall Kickoff Meeting:  Sunday, 9/30, 2-4pm, Kirkland City Hall in the Peter Kirk Room.  We’ll have snacks, updates on our work, and opportunities for input on the future efforts of our group.

For more information and to RSVP, please use our Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/2188331088104116/.

If you can help with the set-up/clean-up or bring snacks, we would really appreciate it.  Here’s a way to sign up to help:  https://www.signupgenius.com/go/508084daeac22a4fd0-meeting2.

4) Stop Kavanaugh!

This fight isn’t over yet.  Use NARAL’s at-home phone banking tool to call people in key states, like Maine and Alaska, to encourage them to immediately call their senators.  Use the linked documents below for instructions and guidance.  (One set of instructions is for phone banking during the day, which allows you to call more states.  The other set is for phone banking in the evening, which focuses on western states.  The evening phone bank is available from 9am-9pm, PST.  If you have trouble, use this email address to let us know and we’ll put you in touch with NARAL support.)

If you have an extra moment and haven’t already done so, please call Senator Cantwell to thank her for her statements against Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination:  (206) 220-6400; (202) 224-3441.

NARALPCW_ HubDialer_SCOTUS DAY NARALPCW_ HubDialer_SCOTUS_EVENING

5) GOTV Postcards from home:  Use the link below to request a packet of pre-addressed Need to Vote postcards, which you can then use to encourage voter turnout in November.  This strategy has been surprisingly effective in creating “peer pressure” around voting.  (A caveat:  we haven’t yet used this site ourselves, so please feel free to send us any feedback you may have.)

Sign up for postcards here:  https://www.needtovote.com/write-notecards.

6) Stop attacking immigrant children:

HHS and DHS are considering ending the Flores Agreement, which has been in place for decades and is a legal decree that limits how long the government can imprison immigrant children.  The Flores Agreement currently sets the limit at 20 days.  If the new HHD/DHS policy goes into effect, the government could detain children indefinitely.  Children are being traumatized; we must continue to speak out against these cruel and abhorrent policies.  Please sign this petition demanding that HHS Secretary Alex Azar uphold the Flores Agreement: https://act.credoaction.com/sign/hhs_flores.

7). Tell Hilton Bellevue to say no to Dinesh D’Souza

As you may recall, D’Souza holds right-wing extremist views and is known for his racist, homophobic, misogynistic, and anti-working class writings/movies. This convicted felon was recently pardoned by the current president.

If you’d like to urge the Hilton Bellevue’s GM Mark Mathews to cancel D’Souza’s appearance, click on the link below and complete the form to the right to send your message. This action is sponsored by the Northwest Accountability Project. 

Action Items (8/30/18)

1. Stop Kavanaugh!  

Hearings for Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to the SCOTUS are set to begin the week of September 4th and a floor vote to confirm him could happen just a few weeks later.  This fight is not lost – NOW is the time to take action!  Here are several ways to stop Kavanaugh:

-Contact Senator Cantwell’s office EVERY DAY to demand that she publicly declare her intention to vote no on Kavanaugh.  She has not yet come out against this nominee, and that is unacceptable.  We need her fired up; we need her to be a leader on this issue.  

Call:  (206) 220-6400; (202) 224-3441

Email:  https://www.cantwell.senate.gov/contact/email/form

-Contact Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), who is the Senate Judiciary Chairman, to request the release of Kavanaugh’s full records.  It is unacceptable to confirm a nominee whose full records haven’t been examined by all senators.  

Call:  (202) 224-3744

-Share your stories and experiences with our Senators and Senators from around the country using NARAL’s story collection tool:  https://act1.myngp.com/Forms/-8056376783412396032.

(A quick note on story sharing: we ALL have a story. It may not be a specific moment in time, but our values and fears are a story too. Success stories can also be helpful. For instance, discussing why having affordable and accessible health care has made your life better is useful to share. To help brainstorm, ask yourself: Why do I care? What’s at stake in my life?

Some of the issues Brett Kavanaugh threatens: reproductive rights, environmental protections, immigration, healthcare, workers’ rights, voting rights, and democracy.)

-From NARAL:  Phonebank from home to stop Kavanaugh!  The NARAL phonebank option will allow you to make calls to constituents of priority U.S. Senators that may be able to block Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court by rejecting his nomination. These priority Senators represent many states, and we will be calling people in these states to urge them to contact their Senator directly and ask them to oppose Kavanaugh. We will be using Hubdialer, an online phone banking service that makes calls as efficient and easy as possible. 

The phonebanking hours are from 9am-6pm PCT.   See the following document for instructions and tips:

Phonebanking tips

2) Stop the Federal Government from arming teachers:

Use this link from Everytown for Gun Safety to learn more and to send a message to your Congressional Representative:  https://act.everytown.org/sign/urge-congress-dont-arm-our-teachers.

3) Support gun safety locally:

-Attend the public hearing on Tuesday, 9/18 at 7:30pm during the Kirkland City Council meeting to show the Council that you support its efforts to officially endorse I-1639, the gun safety initiative from the Alliance for Gun Responsibility.  Few cities have taken this step, and we need to show Kirkland that the community supports them in this endeavor.  If possible, please wear orange.

-Take a few moments to learn more about Proposition 1, the Kirkland community safety ballot initiative on the ballot in November: https://www.saferkirkland.org

 
4) Save our orcas:
 
From the Orca Network – 

-Please contact the Governor’s office (360-902-4111) and urge him to: 

  • Take fast action to increase Chinook and chum hatchery production to help Southern Resident orcas in the near term; 
  • Move forward with breaching the four Lower Snake River Dams, including working with Eastern Washington farmers and stakeholders to mitigate any changes dam breaching might cause; 
  • Give Southern Resident orcas a significant allotment of the Chinook “take;” 
  • Increase funding and conservation easements to provide and restore salmon habitat, especially in key river systems that provide food for orcas.
 
 
 
5) Support our State Initiative to address Climate Change:

Attend the Kirkland City Council Meeting on Tuesday, September 4th, at 7:30pm to show community support for their endorsement of State Initiative I-1631.  

Note:  You do not need to be a resident of Kirkland to appear and physically show your support.  Please wear green, if possible.  
 
Click on this link for more information on the initiative and the September 4th City Council meeting.

6) Protect our elections:

From Vox:

(https://www.vox.com/2018/8/23/17774296/2018-election-security-cyberattacks-white-house-russia-iran)

“A Republican-led, Democrat-supported bill to safeguard US elections from foreign interference is stuck in the bowels of Congress. Here’s a possible explanation: The White House doesn’t want it to pass.

The Secure Elections Act, which Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) introduced, would have made significant changes to the way states protect their voting systems in three significant ways. It proposes to:

 
  • Give security clearances to the top election official in all 50 states so they can follow real-time threats to their voting systems
  • Establish a formal channel among the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), other government agencies, and states to share information on the security of each state’s election
  • Ensure a state conducts an audit after any federal election, including incentivizing efforts to purchase electronic voting machines that retain a paper record of each ballot.” 
 

-Call Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO), chair of the Senate Rules and Administration Committee, to demand that he allow this bill to move forward. This affects all of us, and he has the power to breathe life back into this bill.

Call:   (202) 224-5721

7). Other Indivisible Kirkland business:
 
-Mark your calendar for our Fall Kickoff Meeting:  Sunday, 9/30, 2-4pm, Kirkland City Hal in the Peter Kirk Room.  We’ll have snacks, updates on our work, and opportunities for input on the future efforts of our group.
 
-Last chance to take our Legislative Input Survey to help us craft our 2019 State-Level Legislative Agenda:  https://www.ikwa.info/legislative-agenda/.  This will only take you 2 minutes!
 
-Welcoming Week is a national movement to “ bring newcomers and longtime residents together in honor of the social, cultural, and economic benefits that immigrants bring to communities.”  Welcoming Week is September 14th through September 23rd.  Please check the ERIC (Eastside Refugee & Immigrant Coalition) website for more information and a list of local events:  http://ericmembers.org/welcoming-week-2/. 
 
Upcoming Events:
  • Kirkland City Council Meeting:  Tuesday, 9/4, 7:30pm, Kirkland City Hall (Support I-1631 and wear green)
  • LWSD School Board Meeting: Monday, 9/17, 7pm, 16250 NE 74th Street, Redmond Town Center
  • Kirkland City Council Meeting:  Tuesday, 9/18, 7:30pm, Kirkland City Hall (Support I-1639 and wear orange)

Action Items (7/22/18)

Hi folks,

Here are a bunch of different actions for the next few weeks.  We’ve tried to give you a variety of options for getting involved:  sign-waving, canvassing, letter writing, even hosting a lemonade stand for a good cause!

1) VOTE!  Ballots must be mailed by August 7th.  Please encourage your friends and family to vote.  The primary may not seem important, but it is.  And it’s the perfect time to flex our democratic muscles to prepare for voting in November.  And don’t forget, no stamp needed this year!

2) Help local candidates with their campaigns heading into the primary election on August 7th:

Canvass with Amy Walen, who is running for State Representative in the 48th legislative district, on Saturday, 8/4 from 10am-1pm.  To rsvp, please email info@ikwa.info.

Remind folks to vote with sign-waving for Patty Kuderer and Cindi Bright:

  • Friday, August 3rd, 8-9am, Kirkland location TBD
  • Monday, August 6th, 8-9am, Kirkland location TBD.

To rsvp to either/both of these sign-waving events, please email info@ikwa.info.  Signs are provided!  (FYI, you don’t need to be from the 48th to wave signs with us!)

Patty’s primary race for State Senator is critical as she’s running against someone who is running as a Democrat but has strong ties to the Republican Party.  Patty’s primary win is the only way to ensure we have a strong progressive candidate on the ballot in November.  Cindi Bright is running against Amy Walen for State Representative in the 48th.

For more information on these candidates:

Patty Kuderer (https://www.pattykuderer.com/)

Amy Walen (https://amywalen.com/)

Cindi Bright (http://votecindibright.com/)

3) Help build the blue wave in November:

4) Take action to stop the Census citizenship question.  The Department of Commerce is accepting public comments on this issue until August 7th.  Use this tool from the League of Women Voters to learn more about why a citizenship question on the census undermines the value of the process, as well as to send a letter to the Department of Commerce demanding that they drop the citizenship question from the 2020 Census: http://participate.lwv.org/c/9163/p/dia/action4/common/public/?action_KEY=13432

5) The administration’s “zero tolerance” policy and ICE are STILL terrorizing immigrant families.

TWEET & DONATE: Leverage your social media network to support & share the Flights for Families fund created by the Families Belong Together Campaign, which directly supports separated families. Awesome sample social media graphics can be found in the Flights for Families TOOLKIT. More than $93,000 has been raised to support reunification efforts, but more funding is still needed to cover travel costs and related expenses for families that have been separated by the administration. The donation page isactable.com/donate/flighsforfamilies.

Host or Attend “Kids Take A Stand” on Saturday, July 28th at 10:00 am

1. On July 28th at 10am host a lemonade stand in your neighborhood and invite friends, families, and neighbors.

2. Make signs using the Kids Take A Stand logo, which you can find on this Facebook page under Photos: https://www.facebook.com/KidsTakeaStand/?ref=br_rs.

3. On July 28th, post pictures of your lemonade stand to Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter using the hashtag: #kidstakeastand.

4. Donate all proceeds from your stand to Project Corazon using this link:https://www.lawyersforgoodgovernment.org/project-corazon/.

6) Indivisible Kirkland is gathering information to help craft our 2019 Legislative Agenda.  We would like to hear from all of our members on what issues they feel most passionately about.  Please take our Legislative Input Survey by August 1st:  https://www.ikwa.info/legislative-agenda/.  It will take you less than 5 minutes, and it really helps point us in the direction our members want to go when it comes time to lobby our legislators in the fall and winter.

Thanks so much!

Action Items (7/15/18)

1) Attend the Candidate Forum for the 48th LD on Monday, July 16th at 7pm at Temple B’nai Torah in Bellevue.  All candidates from the 48th LD have been invited, and the attendance for all State Senate candidates has been confirmed.  Doors open at 6:30pm.  (Temple B’nai Torah:  15727 NE 4th ST Bellevue)

2) To support local gun safety efforts in Kirkland, attend the July 17th Kirkland City Council meeting.  On the 17th the city staff will present to the Council all of the input and ideas it has gathered from the community.  It should be quite interesting to see the presentation of this report, as well as to hear Council comments.  The meeting is on Tuesday, July 17th, at 7:30pm at Kirkland City Hall. (If possible, wear orange to show support for reducing gun violence.)

3) Take action to stop the Census citizenship question.  The Department of Commerce is accepting public comments on this issue until August 7th.  Use this tool from the League of Women Voters to learn more about why a citizenship question on the census undermines the value of the process, as well as to send a letter to the Department of Commerce demanding that they drop the citizenship question from the 2020 Census: http://participate.lwv.org/c/9163/p/dia/action4/common/public/?action_KEY=13432

Thank you!

Action Items (7/1/18)

There is so much happening right now.  It’s overwhelming and demoralizing.  We’ve tried to focus this action email on a few key issues:  ICE, SCOTUS, gun safety, and midterm elections.  And we’ve tried to give you a variety of ways to get involved:  rally, donate, call, show up, write, text/phone bank from home, canvassing.  These last few weeks have been some of the hardest yet, but taking action is our best possible response.  Thank you.

1) ICE is terrorizing immigrant families.

Attend a #FamiliesBelongTogether Rally on Saturday, 6/30:

Donate:  ActBlue has created an easy “Support Kids at the Border” link that aggregates 14 important groups so you can easily donate to the organizations on the ground helping immigrant families:  https://secure.actblue.com/donate/kidsattheborder

Consider attending the We Stand With Immigrants: Symposium for Activists and Allies:

2) With Justice Kennedy retiring, it is imperative that Democrats fight against Trump SCOTUS nominees.

Call our Senators to demand that they fight hard against any of the nominees on Trump’s shortlist:

o   Senator Patty Murray:  DC 202-224-2621; Seattle 206-553-5545, Email: https://www.murray.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contactme

o   Senator Maria Cantwell:  DC 202-224-3441; Seattle 206-220-6400, Email: https://www.cantwell.senate.gov/contact/email/form

Call Republican Senators Collins and Murkowski to remind them that they have committed to protecting women’s health care and women’s reproductive rights.  To do so, they must not allow Trump shortlist confirmations to happen:

o   Senator Susan Collins (ME): DC 202-224-2523

o   Senator Lisa Murkowski (AK): DC 202-224-6665

Call Democratic Senators Heitkamp, Donnelly, and Manchin, all of whom voted to confirm Neil Gorsuch.  We absolutely need a different vote from them this time.  Please ask that they vote no on any of the nominees on Trump’s ultra-conservative shortlist.

o   Senator Heidi Heitkamp (ND): DC 202-224-2043

o   Senator Joe Donnelly (IN): DC 202-224-4814

o   Senator Joe Manchin (WV):  DC 202-224-3954

Points you may consider making:

o   The fate of reproductive choice is in the hands of the Court, and Trump’s shortlist only includes nominees who will overturn Roe v. Wade.

o   LQBTQ rights would easily come under attack with a conservative Court.

o   Civil rights and voting rights would also be under further attack.

o   Presidents under active criminal investigation should not get to make lifetime court picks.

o   Mitch McConnell has set the precedent here:  SCOTUS appointments should not happen in election years.

3) To support local gun safety efforts in Kirkland, attend the July 17th Kirkland City Council meeting. On the 17th the city staff will present all of the input and ideas it has gathered from the community to the Council.  It should be quite interesting to see the presentation of this report, as well as to hear Council comments.  The meeting is on Tuesday, July 17th, at 7:30pm at Kirkland City Hall. (If possible, wear orange to show support for reducing gun violence.)

If you want to take one last opportunity to share your input on gun safety in our community with the Kirkland City Council, please write a letter to the City.  You may send letters to Jim Lopez, Assistant City Manager. (123 5th Ave Kirkland 98033)

4) We know how important the midterm elections are.  Here are several ways to help:

Phone bank and text bank from home to help flip Congressional seats for the midterm elections:

Flippable.org has virtual phone banking options for contacting voters in PA and TX.  Phone banking shifts start this weekend:  https://events.mobilizeamerica.io/flippable/?utm_source=flippable&utm_medium=web&utm_campaign=act-now&utm_content=act-now-actionbar

Join Beto O’Rourke’s texting team to help him kick Ted Cruz to the curb: https://secure.betofortexas.com/page/s/text-for-beto

Weekend canvassing opportunities with local candidates:

o   Canvassing with Senator Manka Dhingra, Saturdays & Sundays at 10am and 1pm.  To sign up: https://act.myngp.com/Forms/1694571643540081152.

o   Canvassing with Senator Patty Kuderer, July 1st @ 10am, July 9th @ 5pm, to learn more email Tanya Lavoy at tanya@pattykuderer.com.

o   Canvassing with Kirkland Mayor Amy Walen, who is running for state rep in the 48th, July 14th/July 22nd/August 4th at 10am, to learn more email Michelle Hansmann atmichelle@amywalen.com.

o   Events for Cindi Bright, who is also running for state rep in the 48th, can be found here: http://votecindibright.com/volunteer/

5) Indivisible Kirkland is beginning to gather information to help craft our 2019 Legislative Agenda.  We would like to hear from all of our members on what issues they feel most passionately about.  Please take our Legislative Input Survey:  https://www.ikwa.info/legislative-agenda/.  It will take you less than 5 minutes, and it really helps point us in the direction our members want to go when it comes time to lobby our legislators in the fall and winter.

Action Items (6/17/18)

Hi Indivisibles,

Two actions on two important upcoming events we want to make sure you’re aware of.  We need your help to make these events successful and to demonstrate our community’s deep desire for gun safety action in Kirkland and beyond.

1. Kirkland Town Hall on Gun Safety, THIS WEDNESDAY, June 20th, 5:30pm, Lake Washington High School Theater

  • We need EVERYONE to show up for this!  (We’re forgoing a June meeting in favor of having everyone use that time to attend the Town Hall instead.)
  • This is an important opportunity to share your input with the City on how it should fulfill the mandate of the Gun Safety Resolution, which passed in early May.  What actions do you want to see taken?
  • In addition to allowing audience members to offer comments and suggestions, the City will also provide information through several short panel discussions.
  • If possible, please wear orange to demonstrate support for reducing gun violence.
  • The flyer for this event is attached.

2. Please join our Community Conversation, a small-group discussion with City staff about gun safety actions in Kirkland on Thursday, June 28 at 6:30pm at City Hall.  There’s no need to prepare – the staff will lead the process and facilitate the conversation.  To join, RSVP at info@ikwa.info.

Action Items (6/10/18)

Hi Indivisibles,

I know we’re all busy and worn out.  And I know that summer is around the corner.  But we need a bit more of your energy – especially for the month of June – before we all scatter to enjoy the sunshine.


Actions:

  1. Mark your calendar:  Kirkland Town Hall on Gun Safety, June 20th, 5:30pm, Lake Washington High School Theater
    • We need EVERYONE to show up for this!  (We’re forgoing a June meeting in favor of having everyone use that time to attend the Town Hall instead.)
    • This is an important opportunity to share your input with the City on how it should fulfill the mandate of the Gun Safety Resolution, which passed in early May.  What actions do you want to see taken?
    • If possible, please wear orange to demonstrate support for reducing gun violence.
    • For more information and to RSVP:  https://www.facebook.com/events/243318316416989/?ti=icl
  2. If you would like to be part of a small-group discussion with City staff about gun safety actions in Kirkland, please join our Community Conversation on Thursday, June 28 at 6:30pm at City Hall.  To join, RSVP at info@ikwa.info.
  3. We must raise absolute hell about immigrant families being separated at the border.  Separating families is cruel, and is a terror tactic we cannot stand for.  The damage being done to innocent children is horrific and unthinkable. The United Nations Human Rights High Commissioner just listed the U.S. in a memo on human rights concerns:

“The practice of separating families amounts to arbitrary and unlawful interference in family life, and is a serious violation of the rights of the child…Children should never be detained for reasons related to their own or their parents’ migration status. Detention is never in the best interests of the child and always constitutes a child rights violation.”

  • Thank each MoC for cosponsoring the HELP Separated Families Act.
  • Request that they act as champions of this bill.  They need to talk about this alarming issue EVERY DAY.
  • They should consider visiting the SeaTac detention center to better understand the issue and educate the public.
  • Make sure they are aware of the United Nations memo detailing the human rights abuses that are happening when families are separated. (See above)

Sen. Patty Murray: DC: (202) 224-2621; Seattle: (206) 553-5545
Email:  https://www.murray.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contactme

Sen. Maria Cantwell: DC: (202) 224-3441; Seattle: (206) 220-6400
Email:  https://www.cantwell.senate.gov/contact/email/form

Rep. Suzan DelBene: DC: (202) 225-6311; Bothell: (425) 485-0085
Email:  https://delbene.house.gov/contact/

  1. It’s time to start gathering signatures for I-1639, the Safe Schools, Safe Communities Initiative, which includes a number of important gun safety measures.  If you’re interested in helping with signature gathering, please email us at info@ikwa.info and we’ll keep you posted on opportunities to help.  For more information on I-1639: https://gunresponsibility.org/news/ballot-initiative-assault-weapon/.
  2. Indivisible Kirkland is beginning to gather information to help craft our 2019 Legislative Agenda.  We would like to hear from all of our members on what issues they feel most passionately about. Please take our Legislative Input Survey:  https://www.ikwa.info/legislative-agenda/.  It will take you less than 5 minutes, and it really helps point us in the direction our members want to go when it comes time to lobby our legislators in the fall and winter.

Action Items (5/29/2018):

  1. Mark your calendar:  Kirkland Town Hall on Gun Safety, June 20th, 5:30pm, Lake Washington High School Theater
  • This is an important opportunity to share your input with the City on how it should fulfill the mandate of the Gun Safety Resolution, which passed in early May.  What actions do you want to see taken?
  • Please wear orange to demonstrate support for reducing gun violence.
  • Bring family and friends – we need a HUGE turnout in order to maintain the momentum surrounding this issue.
  • Consider making a public comment.  (If you would like some guidance on this, don’t hesitate to let us know:  info@ikwa.info.)

 

  1. In addition to the Town Hall, the City of Kirkland will be collecting community input on gun safety through small meetings and focus groups.  If you would like to participate in a gun safety focus group, please send us an email so that we can add you to the participant list:  info@ikwa.info.  Thank you!

 

  1. The current administration is attacking women’s health again.  The international gag rule that we fought so hard against over a year ago is now coming home.  From NARAL:
    The Trump-Pence gag rule would:
  • Make it impossible for patients to access birth control or preventative care from comprehensive reproductive health care providers like Planned Parenthood
  • Leave doctors, nurses, hospitals, and community health centers unable to refer patients for legal abortion care.
  • Weaken medical standards for those receiving funding from Title X – making room for fake women’s health clinics to receive these federal taxpayer dollars to promote anti-abortion lies and propaganda”

Please use this link to leave a strong comment for HHS opposing the gag rule:  http://actnow.prochoiceamerica.org/sign/180522-hhs-domestic-gag-rule-aff/?source=washington#.Ww1UWIplCfA.

  1. Indivisible Kirkland is beginning to gather information to help craft our 2019 Legislative Agenda.  We would like to hear from all of our members on what issues they feel most passionately about. Please take our Legislative Input Survey:  https://www.ikwa.info/legislative-agenda/.  It will take you less than 5 minutes, and it really helps point us in the direction our members want to go when it comes time to lobby our legislators in the fall and winter.

Also, if you have an extra moment, check out our new website!  We’ve put our new name and updated logo together with a new look.  You can find us at www.ikwa.info AND www.indivisiblekirkland.com. (They will take you to the same page.)

Action Items (5/14/2018):

Two action updates for today:

  1.  Take the City of Kirkland Community Survey:
  2. Take action to protect children in the immigration system:

This week, May 14th to May 18th, is a state-wide effort to pressure our Congressional representatives to take action to protect children in the immigration system.  Each day this week has its own focus.  I’ll send you all of the phone numbers and information you’ll need.  If we all call about the same issue, on the same day, our voices will be amplified in a truly powerful way.  Thank you for your help on this incredibly important issue.

Monday, May 14th:  Stop Separating Families in Detention

Background:  DHS has been toying with separating families detained at the border since the start of the Trump administration. To deter illegal entry and asylum seekers, DHS Secretary John Kelly announced a separation policy in March 2017, but backed off under intense criticism.

Nevertheless, the New York Times discovered that more than 700 children have been taken from adults claiming to be their parents since October 2017, including more than 100 children under the age of 4. In one prominent case, a 7-year-old Congolese girl was separated from her mother for over four months, despite the fact that her mother broke no laws when she presented herself to border agents in order to apply for asylum.

Attorney General Sessions recently announced a policy of charging every person apprehended crossing the border with a crime. This move would guarantee separation of families, by sending children to the Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement while their parents are held in detention centers to await trial.

ACTION:  ☎ Call Congress ☎

Sen. Patty Murray: DC: (202) 224-2621; Seattle: (206) 553-5545

Email:  https://www.murray.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/contactme

Sen. Maria Cantwell: DC: (202) 224-3441; Seattle: (206) 220-6400

Email:  https://www.cantwell.senate.gov/contact/email/form

Rep. Suzan DelBene: DC: (202) 225-6311; Bothell: (425) 485-0085

Email:  https://delbene.house.gov/contact/

Tips when calling

  • Be polite, but passionate. Use your own words when possible;
  • For the most impact, call the local and national office, and follow up with an email;
  • Have staffers repeat back your key points to ensure they’ve got it.

Script:  DHS needs to stop terrorizing children to deter migrants and asylum seekers. It’s cruel, it’s immoral, and it’s unnecessary. It is a violation of U.S. law to separate children from their parents in order to deter illegal immigration.

ICE must not separate families who are apprehended entering the country, or who ask for asylum. Despite repeated assurances to the contrary, instances of asylum-seeking families being separated are common and well documented.

DHS should abandon their plan to charge all people apprehended at the border with a crime. They should keep families together in family detention centers, or release them on bond while they wait for a decision on their status.

Resources:

“Trump administration to step up family separation at the border.” Ted Hesson, Politico, May 7, 2018.

“Hundreds of Immigrant Children Have Been Taken From Parents at U.S. Border.” Caitlin Dickerson. New York Times. April 20, 2018.

“Top Homeland Security officials urge criminal prosecution of parents crossing border with children.” Maria Sacchetti, Washington Post, April 26, 2018.

“Watchdog to investigate DHS family separations in immigration custody.” Tal Kopan. CNN Politics, April 16, 2018.

“ACLU sues over separation of mother, 7-year-old daughter seeking asylum.” Nomaan Merchant, Associated Press. Chicago Tribune, February 26, 2018.

Action Items (5/10/2018):

1. Please mark your calendar for Saturday’s Indivisible Kirkland meeting:  Saturday, 5/12, 3-4pm, Peter Kirk Room in Kirkland City Hall.  (The Peter Kirk Room is downstairs, so plan on parking and entering through the lower level, off of 2nd Street.). Our meeting will include a number of quick updates on ongoing efforts, including our gun safety work.  And, of course, cake. See you there! (For more information and to RSVP: https://www.facebook.com/events/171197337045946/?ti=icl.

2. Become a PCO!  Our election strategy for this year is all about maximizing the blue wave locally.  One very important way to do this is to become a PCO, a role that focuses on getting community members engaged and voting.  See the attached handout (below) for more information on PCO status for Kirkland’s precincts and how to become a PCO.  Also, check out this link: https://www.fileforpco.com/#who.

3.  Join next week’s efforts:  Five Days of Action for Children in the Immigration System.

The current administration’s gratuitous cruelty towards immigrants harms many thousands of children every year. 

Over five days, organizations across Washington state are going to force a sense of urgency on our Congressional representatives, and demand they prioritize work on children in the immigration system. Each day will be a different issue:

* Monday, May 14th: Separating families in detention
* Tuesday, May 15th: Losing thousands of children placed into protective custody
* Wednesday, May 16th: Imprisoning pregnant women
* Thursday, May 17th: Letting children defend themselves alone in immigration court
* Friday, May 18th: Changing the meaning of “public charge”

You can sign up directly to receive information on how to help (https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdcv0XPtHH6hr5nLdwTIQfljhJlGQRYcNxZ8mtx3uGAptveUA/viewform) or you can watch our emails/Facebook page for details.

(Thank you to Alx Dark from Seattle Immigrant Rights Action Group for all of this important information.)

For more information related to these issues:

Thank you! See you Saturday!

Action Items (4/7/2018):  As always, check our calendar for upcoming events! Also…

Keep a citizenship question off the 2020 Census.

The Census count is important in several ways.  It helps allocate funds and resources at state and local levels, and it helps determine Congressional representation.  Including a question about citizenship in the Census is another way to attack immigrants in our country, and will lead to dramatically lower response rates.  Many mayors and governors, from both parties, are begging Secretary of Commerce Ross to abandon this dangerous idea.  How can we help?

Call WA Attorney General Bob Ferguson and thank him for joining a number of other states in suing the government over this issue.  Our AG continues to be a leader for our state.

Call:  (360) 753-6200, Email:  https://fortress.wa.gov/atg/formhandler/ago/ContactForm.aspx

Call our members of Congress (MoCs) to ask for their support in protecting the 2020 Census.  Rep. Pramila Jayapal has been a leader in rejecting this new attack on immigrants.  Ask our MoCs to do the same.  Here’s some information on Rep. Jayapal’s efforts:  https://jayapal.house.gov/media/press-releases/jayapal-chu-grijalva-richmond-call-sec-ross-reject-citizenship-questions-2020

Representative DelBene:  202-225-6311, 425-485-0085, Email:  https://delbene.house.gov/contact/

Senator Murray:  202-224-2621, 206-553-5545, Email:  https://www.murray.senate.gov/contact/e-mail.cfm

Senator Cantwell:  202-224-3441, 206-220-6400, Email:  https://www.cantwell.senate.gov/contact/email/form

Attend the Kirkland City Council meeting on April 17th (7:30pm, City Hall) when our group will request that Mayor Walen join the other 160 mayors from around the country who are asking for a fair 2020 Census.  (For more information on this:  https://www.usmayors.org/2018/02/06/over-160-mayors-to-secretary-of-commerce-ross-dont-undercut-cities-work-with-us-to-ensure-u-s-cities-are-treated-fairly-in-the-2020-census/.)

Support the King County Elections Department in its effort to get prepaid postage for all ballots starting in August of this year.

The Elections Executive in King County recently submitted a budget proposal to the King County Council asking for funding for these efforts, citing the significant increase in voter participation in the April 2017 special election where prepaid postage was provided.  (The voter turnout numbers jumped 6 points in that election.)  This is another step forward in making voting accessible to all, especially since the prepaid postage bill was not passed in this year’s legislative session.

Please contact the King County Council to indicate your support for prepaid postage on all ballots.

Rod Dembowski:  rod.dembowski@kingcounty.gov

Larry Gossett:  Larry.Gossett@kingcounty.gov

Kathy Lambert:  kathy.lambert@kingcounty.gov

Jeanne Kohl-Welles:  jeanne.kohl-welles@kingcounty.gov

Dave Upthegrove:  Dave.Upthegrove@kingcounty.gov

Claudia Balducci:  claudia.balducci@kingcounty.gov

Pete von Reichbauer:  Pete.vonReichbauer@kingcounty.gov

Joe McDermott:  joe.mcdermott@kingcounty.gov

Reagan Dunn:  reagan.dunn@kingcounty.gov

Attend the Kirkland City Council meeting on April 17th (7:30pm, City Hall) when our group will request that the City of Kirkland draft a letter of support for prepaid postage to be sent to the King County Council.

For more information on this issue:

http://www.king5.com/article/news/local/push-for-prepaid-postage-on-king-county-ballots/281-532973267

Action Items (3/5/2018)

March 8th is the last day of the current legislative session.  So this is it, friends.  These next few days are our last chance to push for what we want.  Here are some guidelines and updates to help you do that:

·         The Automatic Voter Registration bill (HB 2595) has passed both chambers!  This is fantastic news, but there is still some concern that this bill will get watered down as the two chambers reconcile their versions of the bill.  One group is pushing to drop the Health Benefit Exchange from the agencies that can register people.  We do NOT want this to happen.  Please use this letter-writing tool from the League of Women Voters to tell your reps this.  This only takes a moment.  http://participate.lwv.org/c/9163/p/dia/action4/common/public/?action_KEY=13284.

·          SB 6620, Improving Security in Schools – This bill improves security in schools and the safety of students by requiring the same background check process to purchase certain rifles and shotguns as is currently required for pistols.  It also prohibits persons under the age of 21 from purchasing certain rifles and shotguns. Additionally, it creates a grant program for school districts to implement emergency response systems and creates a program to provide students and the community with the means to report unsafe or violent activities.  Please contact all of your representative to ask them to support this bill.  (Sponsors:  Kuderer, Dhingra)

·         HB 1144, Amending state’s greenhouse gas emission limits to be consistent with most recent assessment of climate change science – This bill passed the House and needs to pass the Senate this week.  Please contact your senator to ask for support for this bill.

 ·         SB 6617, Concerning Public Records Disclosures by the Legislative Branch – Take a break on this one, everyone!  The Governor and our legislators received so much feedback on this bill, and specifically on how this bill was rammed through the process, that the Governor has vetoed it and there is an understanding that the Governor, the Legislature and the community will work together to create a more thoughtful and transparent bill for next session.  Many of the legislators from our districts were among those who apologized for the bad process and who asked the Governor to veto the bill so that they could start over.  It’s exciting to see civic engagement working so quickly and so effectively.  For more information about this bill and the backstory behind it:  https://mailchi.mp/lwvwa/march-voter-newsletter?e=06a61cf290.

Action Items (2/28/18)

SB 6620, Improving Security in Schools – This bill is new!  The bill improves security in schools and the safety of students by requiring the same background check process to purchase certain rifles and shotguns as is currently required for pistols.  It also prohibits persons under the age of 21 from purchasing certain rifles and shotguns. Additionally, it creates a grant program for school districts to implement emergency response systems and creates a program to provide students and the community with the means to report unsafe or violent activities.  Please contact all of your representative to ask them to support this bill.  (Sponsors:  Kuderer, Dhingra)

HB 2595/SB 6353, Automatic Voter Registration – The AVR would expand the number of registered voters by having state agencies register those who have proven citizenship.  This bill would have a significant impact on voter participation.  Sadly, in committee, this bill was watered down, with fewer state agencies being included in this process.  That said, there is hope that once the bill passes those agencies can be added again later.  Please contact your Senator and your House members to ask that they pass the strongest possible version of this bill.  (Sponsors:  Kuderer, Dhingra, Palumbo, Stanford, Goodman)

SB 6219, Reproductive Parity Act – This bill would ensure reproductive parity in all Washington state health plans. Access to the full range of health benefits and preventative services, as guaranteed under the laws of this state, provides all Washingtonians the opportunity to lead healthier and more productive lives. This bill establishes contraceptive coverage requirements for health plans and an abortion coverage requirement for health plans that provide coverage for maternity care. This bill passed the Senate and moved out of committee in the House.  Please contact your House members to ask them to vote in favor of this bill.  (Sponsors:  Dhingra, Kuderer, Palumbo)

Action Item (5/12/17)

1.Start thinking about what you would like to tell our elected officials about healthcare: do you or a family member have a personal story to share?  Do you want them to know how you feel about the role of healthcare in our society?  Very soon we will be asking for as many stories and comments as possible…watch this space for more info…

2.If you haven’t already been calling our Senators to ask them to stand strong against Trumpcare, please do so. (Senator Murray:  202-224-2621  Senator Cantwell:  202-224-3441)

Here’s a script you may use during your call:

Hello, my name is [NAME] and I am a constituent from [YOUR CITY].

I’m calling today because I want to ask Senator [Murray/Cantwell] to oppose the so-called American Health Care Act in every way possible. I ask that she delay, obstruct, and fight the repeal of the Affordable Care Act because citizens all across the country will die if the Republicans get their way. I also ask that she speak out publicly and often to point out the effects of this terrible legislation on the American people.

[If leaving a voicemail, leave your full street address to make sure your call is counted]

[If you have a personal story about how the ACA has affected your life, please use it instead of this script. Constituent stories are the most effective way to help our Senators make an effective case to their colleagues.]

Action Items (5/5/17)

1. (From the Indivisible WA Enviro Network)
Oppose Tesoro’s Proposed Fossil Fuel Exports
What to do – Submit a public EIS comment before May 8, 2017, asking the Skagit County Planning Commission to oppose the Tesoro “Clean Products Upgrade Project”.
Why it’s important – Tesoro proposes additions and upgrades to an existing facility in Anacortes, WA to produce lower-sulfur gasoline from higher xylene content Bakken oil (creating more fracking demand for this oil) and to produce 15,000 barrels per day of mixed xylenes, most of which will be exported to Asia for use in clothing, synthetic products and plastics.
This increase in shipping traffic, means up to five extra tankers a month entering and exiting Fidalgo Bay. Since Tesoro already has a crude oil rail terminal on March Point, the new marine oil terminal affords Tesoro the capacity to ‘transship’ export crude oil in future by oil tanker, turning March Point into a “back-door” oil export terminal.
Tesoro as a company has been fined by the EPA for violations after an explosion and fire at the refinery in 2010 that resulted in seven deaths. They’ve also been fined by the courts for continued high levels of dangerous air pollution near their oil refineries.
Leave your comments at: tesoroanacorteseis.com/comment

2. Thank WA State Congressional Reps for their NO vote on ACH.  Let’s show them some support for listening to their constituents.

CD 1: Suzan DelBene (D)  202-225-6311

CD 2:  Rick Larsen (D)  202-225-2605

CD 3:  Jaime Herrera Beutler (R)  202-225-3536

CD 6:  Derek Kilmer (D)  202-225-5916

CD 7:  Pramila Jayapal (D)  202-225-3106

CD 8:  Dave Reichert (R)  202-225-7761

CD 9:  Adam Smith (D)  202-225-8901

CD 10:  Denny Heck (D)  202-225-9740

(The only YES was from Cathy McMorris Rodgers in CD 5.  Dan Newhouse in CD 4 did not vote.)

Action Items (4/20/17):

1. The People’s Climate Movement is a broad based coalition of communities, workers, and environmental organizations dedicated to advance solutions to the climate crisis that are rooted in racial, gender, social, and economic justice.
They are hosting an Earth Day to May Day Action Week with several meetings, marches and trainings between April 23 and May 1. The full list is here: earthday2mayday.org/

Events include: April 22nd Environmental Racism Conference, April 29th People’s Climate March, and May 1 Climate Justice Feeder March and May Day Rally.

2. Escalation with North Korea (thanks to re:act newsletter for this info)

Background from Politico:
“Former Ambassador Christopher Hill, who led the Bush-era negotiations to get rid of North Korea’s nuclear weapons program, said Sunday that President Donald Trump is “trying to out-North Korean the North Koreans” with his aggressive rhetoric against the totalitarian state.” As the White House was talking about sending a naval “armada” to the Korean Peninsula, and a U.S. official calling it a “show of force” in response to recent provocations, the very ships in question were on their way to participate in military exercises in the Indian Ocean, some 3,500 miles in the opposite direction — a mix-up that officials blamed on a “lack of follow up.” Further confusion resulted after Secretary of Defense James Mattis indicated the exercises were cancelled. The Wall Street Journal reports that the episode “sparked ridicule in some corners of Asia and wariness in others.”

To do:  Call your reps to request congressional approval before any further escalation, and ask them to clarify their position on efforts with North Korea.

Sample Script:  “Hello, I’m [NAME] from [PLACE]. I’m asking that [REPRESENTATIVE X] publicly call for President Trump to get congressional approval before any further military escalation in North Korea. What is [REPRESENTATIVE X]’s position on what to do next?”

 For more information:  https://www.globalzero.org/get-the-facts?utm_source=web&utm_medium=carousel&utm_campaign=GZ

Action Items (4/14/17):

1. The EPA has an open public comment period on their regulatory reform (or, utter dismantling). You can read the Executive Orders and submit comments on them here:

www.epa.gov/laws-regulations/regulatory-reform

2. Washington Conservation Voters is kicking off their 100 Days of Action campaign on April 23 at Wilde Rover Pub in Kirkland.
From their page: Join WCV and other community partners to kick off election season with 100 days of action! We will share with you some of our strategies this election season, discuss some key issues and themes for this election, and talk about how we will engage our friends, communities, and neighbors in this critical election.
wcvoters.org/events/100-days-action-kickoff/

Action Item (4/5/17):

(From 350 Seattle, a climate justice organization – thanks to Janetmarie for sending this along.)

Can you call the Seattle Mayor today and ask that he make a public statement in support of fossil fuel divestment of the pension fund?

Mayor Murray: 206-684-4000

Suggested call script: “I am calling to ask that Mayor Murray issue a public statement in support of fossil fuel divestment of the City’s pension fund. Our city has no business investing in companies like Energy Transfer Partners and TransCanada, corporations that are destroying our shared climate and abusing treaty rights.”

Some background from 350:

Monday, after 350 Seattle activists helped to draft the resolution, the Seattle City Council voted unanimously to seek out financial institutions that do not provide TransCanada or the Keystone XL pipeline with project-level loans. This is our first big win in the renewed battle against KXL–and it sends a powerful message to banks that TransCanada is a toxic investment.

Now, we need to keep working to ensure that the City’s $2.5 billion pension fund divests from fossil fuels.

Following the February delivery of a letter to the Mayor by environmental justice, faith, labor, and community leaders, we were met with six weeks of silence….so after our victory at City Council Monday, over 100 activists visited the Mayor’s office to ask if he supports fossil fuel divestment. Still we’ve received no reply.

Action Items (4/4/17):

1. Call your state reps and encourage them to support HB 1611.

From Washington Conservation Voters:
House Bill 1611, concerning oil transportation safety, passed out of the House Finance Committee last week and is now awaiting a floor vote. The provisions include increasing the barrel tax and expanding it to pipelines to fill the $3.6 million shortfall in oil spill prevention and clean up funding are likely to become an important part of the budget negotiations.

2. Help support HB 2182.

HB 2182 will help add $50 million of critical revenue to the budget for toxic clean-up, prevention and public participation grants.

Watch the House Budget Committee hearing live at 9AM, Tuesday 4/4.  Or you can watch archived videos about two hours after the live session happens. The State Legislature website will link to the videos, as well as give more specific information about this bill and give an easy link to comment on the bill:

http://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary?BillNumber=2182&Year=2017

From Washington Conservation Voters:
This week’s phone bank will be on this important budget bill, HB 2182.
Each week we call on the most pressing environmental legislation in Olympia and we could use your help! If you are in the Seattle area, RSVP back to Kat Holmes (kat@wcvoters.org) to join our phone bank this Thursday (4/6) from 5:30-8pm at our downtown Seattle office (1402 3rd Ave. suite 1400). If you cannot make it in person, join us for our weekly phone banks remotely! Watch our “phonebanking 101” video and then tune in via Webinar to our briefing and phonebank session!

3. Call your state reps to support SB 5472, the voter drop box bill.

(From the League of Women Voters:)

Under current law, each county is only required to have one drop box, except for very large counties, which are required to have two. Far too many people cannot easily and reasonably get to a drop box, and therefore miss the opportunity to vote.

SB 5472 would require a ballot drop box for every 15,000 registered voters.

In the last few weeks of the session we see increasing competition for the legislature’s time and attention. We need massive contacts from constituents to get this bill pulled to the floor and passed.  The bill has passed in the State Senate, but needs help getting through the House.

For more information on the bill:

http://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary?BillNumber=5472&Year=2017

Action Item (3/30/17):

(From 350 Seattle, a climate justice organization)

Tell Seattle City Council President Harrell and Council Member Gonzalez we need a #DefundKXL Vote!

The Trump Administration just approved permits for Keystone XL, but the project still needs funding from the banks. If we stop that funding we can stop Keystone XL Seattle started a national movement by dropping Wells Fargo. We can do it again by promising to dump any bank that directly funds Keystone XL.

The City Council is considering a resolution to do just that, but Council President Harrell has yet to schedule it for a vote, and Council Member Gonzalez hasn’t taken a position on it. We need them to hear that people in Seattle and across the country need them to act now. Can you call Council President Harrell and Council Member Gonzalez and ask them to vote yes on the Defund Keystone Resolution this Monday?

Sample script for Harrell (206-684-8804): Hello my name is XX, and I’m calling about the Defund Keystone XL resolution. I’m calling to ask that Council President Harrell schedule the vote on the resolution for this Monday, April 3rd. I’m also asking that Council President Harrell vote yes on this resolution. KXL threatens our climate and the livelihoods of indigenous peoples and landowners along its route. Seattle should set an example for the country and make sure our city isn’t financing this dangerous project.

Sample script for Gonzalez (206-684-8802): Hello my name is XX, and I’m calling to ask Council Member Gonzalez to vote yes on the Defund Keystone XL resolution in full council this Monday. KXL threatens our climate and the livelihoods of indigenous peoples and landowners along its route. Seattle should set an example for the country and make sure our city isn’t financing this dangerous project.

Action Items (3/28/17):

1. Do you know your state legislative district?  Do you know who your state senator and two state representatives are?

If not, find them!  http://app.leg.wa.gov/districtfinder

Then, follow your Reps on Twitter, FaceBook, Newsletters:

http://www.1stld.democrat/

https://www.45thdemocrats.org/

2. Contact the House Finance Committee and ask them to vote YES on HB 1611

(Find the Committee members here:  http://leg.wa.gov/House/Committees/FIN/Pages/MembersStaff.aspx)

  On Thursday, the House Finance Committee is considering HB 1611, which would improve oil transportation safety. 

Information on the bill:

From the bill digest:  Addresses oil transportation safety to: 1) Enhance safety measures that protect against the risk of oil spills occurring on land and water; (2) Provide a sustainable source of funding for the state’s oil spill preparedness and response program; and (3) Ensure the state’s ability to recover from a large oil spill.

From the WA Environmental Priorities Coalition:  Current Elements of HB 1611

Funding and Financial Responsibility

–Update the barrel tax to provide reliable funding for oil spill prevention and oil

transportation safety by eliminating the export tax credit and expanding the barrel

tax to pipelines.

Marine Protection

–Direct the state to adopt rules to protect Puget Sound from increased threat of barge

traffic and risk of new tanker traffic carrying tar sands

–Improve transparency and decision making if an existing facility changes from

importing crude oil to exporting oil.

Pipeline Safety

–Ensure a fair review and public input on projects to build a new pipeline or expand

capacity of an existing pipeline.

3.  Special Elections – (from re:act newsletter)

These elections may not be happening in our state, but there are still ways to help – you can donate, you can phone bank, you can be part of their social media efforts, etc.

Jon Ossoff for Congress (GA)

Background: Democrat Jon Ossoff, a former John Lewis staffer, is running in the Georgia special election for Tom Price’s vacated seat. Hostility toward Trump gave the president just a 48–47 win in the previously red district. Election is April 18. https://electjon.com/

Rob Quist for Congress (MT)

Background: Quist is the Democratic nominee in a special election to fill Montana’s lone house seat. A local report wrote how Quist “ranches in Creston and toured the state as frontman for the Mission Mountain Wood Band, and he has a kind of rock star appeal. When he stumps about the Affordable Care Act, people cheer him on, as though singing along to the chorus.” Election is May 25.  http://robquist.org/

James Thompson for Congress (KS)

Background: Thompson is a civil rights attorney and Army veteran who is running to fill the seat vacated by Mike Pompeo (R), who went on to lead the CIA. Election is April 11.  http://www.votejamesthompson.com/

Prince Chestnut for Alabama House of Representatives

Background (from Flippable): “Prince Chestnut is the presiding municipal court judge for the city of Selma. He has operated a successful law practice for 10 years and has served the Alabama Black Belt for 15 years. His clients list as a lawyer includes major nonprofits in Central Alabama, rural water authorities and other local governmental entities.” Election is April 18.  http://www.princechestnut4house.com/

Action Item (3/21/17):

Four voting rights bills are being heard tomorrow (Wednesday) in the State Senate Government Committee.

(WA Voting Rights Act HB1800, Extending time for voter registration HB1468, Youth preregistration HB1513, DISCLOSE Act HB1807)

Please contact your senator and the senators on the State Government Committee to support these bills.

State Government Committee:

  • Senator Mark Miloscia (chair, 30th LD):  360-786-7658
  • Senator Hans Zeiger (25th LD):  360-786-7648
  • Senator Kirk Pearson (39th LD):  360-786-7676
  • Senator Sam Hunt (22nd LD):  360-786-7642
  • Senator Patty Kuderer (48th LD):  360-786-7694

Action Item (3/21/17):

The state legislature is currently working on budgets. Contact your state senator to ask for a plan to generate state revenue in a fair and adequate way. We need a progressive revenue plan that will generate enough to fully fund education.

From the League of Women Voters:
The Governor has already released his ideas regarding a balanced budget and the sources of revenue. The House and Senate will release their versions in the next two weeks. They then must agree on one version to send to the Governor for his signature. These competing versions must be balanced and identify where the revenue / cuts will come from. At this point the two versions are far, far apart.

Washington has the most regressive tax structure in the US. We rely too heavily on the sales tax which is grossly unfair (regressive) while at the same time more and more tax breaks are being awarded to corprations. In addition we are transitioning from a manufacturing based economy to a service based economy. High paying industries, like financial services, can pay the same B&O rate as other businesses. Businesses need to stop asking the taxpayer to clean up the pollution impacting our health and environment. A carbon pollution tax is a fair way to clean up the pollution impacting our health and environment. Fairness means we all share proportionately in supporting our state as a great place to work and live now and in the future.

Another way to progressively generate revenue, from the League of Women Voters:

Over the years many tax loopholes/preferences have been given to businesses needing a competitive boost. But times have changed. Many of these tax adjustments clearly do not serve our state or our residents. Each tax exemption or preference is money that could be used for educating our children, protecting our environment, or effectively governing our state.

Exempting people buying personal airplanes from a sales tax; giving tax credits to soft drink sellers on their purchases of carbonated beverage syrup; or giving preferential tax rate for re-sellers of prescription drugs- These are examples of tax exemptions that need review in light of our changing times.

Other Actions to Take:

City of Kirkland City Council passes Resolution  R-5312

The City of Kirkland City Council passed Resolution R-5312 last night! The resolution will provide the framework for community dialogue & action related to gun safety and community safety. The resolution passed 6-0 (one member was not in attendance). Thank you to the members of Indivisible Kirkland, KirklandSafe and other allied community organizations and concerned people who came out tonight to show their support for this resolution. The house was packed in support and attendees were thankful for the snacks provided by committed volunteers. A special thank you to Alycia Ramirez, Ashleigh (student) and Leanna Karg for sharing their perspectives on gun safety, gun violence and responsible ownership during Items from the Audience. You are inspirational! And finally, thank you to the city council members for prioritizing gun safety within our community. We look forward to the work ahead!

Gun Safety Resolution

Indivisible Kirkland and KirklandSafe collaborated to create a proposed resolution that asks the Kirkland City Council to partner with the community to prioritize gun safety in our city and in our state. To that end, we are putting forth a list of priorities that can be met through state legislative action, City of Kirkland reforms, and community initiatives.  This resolution, which the Kirkland City Council will be voting on, asks the City to commit its time, resources, and lobbying efforts towards this important public safety issue.

A link to the proposed resolution can be found here:  Resolution to Save Lives through Gun Safety

We are asking community members to write letters of support to the Kirkland City Council indicating support for the resolution.  These letters could contain personal stories or experiences, or they could contain explanations for why you feel gun safety reform is important.  These letters will be included in the packet delivered to the Council when the resolution is proposed.  Here are two sample letters to help with ideas, but please use your own words as much as possible:

Sample Letter of Support (1)

Sample Letter of Support (2)

[captainform id=”1168147″]

Indivisible Kirkland Kenmore Mtg on Gun Safety Reform

A lively one hour meeting was held last Thursday (3/8) starting at 5:45pm in the Kingsgate Library to share information and coordinate actions towards the goal of improving gun safety in our state. There were 20+ concerned members of the community in attendance including representatives of the Kirkland Safe organization. Valuable information on current state and federal laws were shared as well as candidate next steps the most immediate of which is to join in the upcoming ‘March for our Lives’ event taking place on 3/24. Stay tuned to the Indivisible Kirkland Kenmore Web site or Facebook group page for more details to follow on additional next steps and actions.

 

Legislature Status Update 2/28/2018

We’re approaching the last week of the state legislative session.  Here are some updates for you.

  • SB 6298, Domestic Violence Firearm Ban – This bill adds domestic violence harassment to the list of offenses for which a person is prohibited from possessing a firearm.  It passed the Senate & House so no need to call on that anymore.  (Yesterday they also passed the Voting Rights Act and Same Day Voter Registration, so it was a big day.  If you’re calling about other bills, it would be nice to also thank them for the bills that have passed.)
  • SB 6620, Improving Security in Schools – This bill is new!  The bill improves security in schools and the safety of students by requiring the same background check process to purchase certain rifles and shotguns as is currently required for pistols.  It also prohibits persons under the age of 21 from purchasing certain rifles and shotguns. Additionally, it creates a grant program for school districts to implement emergency response systems and creates a program to provide students and the community with the means to report unsafe or violent activities.  Please contact all of your representative to ask them to support this bill.  (Sponsors:  Kuderer, Dhingra)
  • HB 2595/SB 6353, Automatic Voter Registration – The AVR would expand the number of registered voters by having state agencies register those who have proven citizenship.  This bill would have a significant impact on voter participation.  Sadly, in committee, this bill was watered down, with fewer state agencies being included in this process.  That said, there is hope that once the bill passes those agencies can be added again later.  Please contact your Senator and your House members to ask that they pass the strongest possible version of this bill.  (Sponsors:  Kuderer, Dhingra, Palumbo, Stanford, Goodman)
  • SB 6219, Reproductive Parity Act – This bill would ensure reproductive parity in all Washington state health plans. Access to the full range of health benefits and preventative services, as guaranteed under the laws of this state, provides all Washingtonians the opportunity to lead healthier and more productive lives. This bill establishes contraceptive coverage requirements for health plans and an abortion coverage requirement for health plans that provide coverage for maternity care. This bill passed the Senate and moved out of committee in the House.  Please contact your House members to ask them to vote in favor of this bill.  (Sponsors:  Dhingra, Kuderer, Palumbo)