2017 budget adopted! Addressing homelessness, creating safe communities and devising system-wide reforms

November 23rd, 2016

After many weeks of intense work, Council has adopted the 2017 City budget, and I am very pleased with the priorities we supported next year. We are moving forward in many ways that matter greatly to me. In this budget, I remained focused on three main priorities: to address homelessness, to create safe communities in […]

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The Sun will Rise Again this Morning

November 9th, 2016

I am deeply disappointed by the outcome of the presidential election. The people of this country have elected a man who repeatedly demonstrated his disrespect for so many – to women, Latinos, Muslims, Black Americans, LGBTQ couples, his contractors, his past wives and people with whom he disagrees. The world is shocked by this decision; […]

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Transitioning From Tents to Stability: Moving Faster to Get People Inside

October 18th, 2016

Homelessness is the most talked about issue in town right now. At dinner parties, community meetings, and even at a friend’s wedding Saturday night, people want to talk about how to shift from tents in their neighborhoods or along their drive home, to building more homes and stable shelters for people experiencing homelessness. Guests peppered […]

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The Conversation about Encampments and Sweeps Continue

October 16th, 2016

Last Friday, October 14, 2016, in my Human Services and Public Health Committee we discussed two substitute versions of CB 118794 about encampments and sweeps.  If you missed the four hours of controversy, you can catch up: watch Seattle Channel’s   Video link here. Links to the underlying legislation, and two substitutes — one offered by […]

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The Task Force on Unsanctioned Encampments — 17 Principles

October 16th, 2016

On October 3, 2016, the Task Force on Unsanctioned Encampments issued its report.  The sixteen members and leaders offered the following 17 Principles.  I am grateful to all who were involved, including co-chairs Sally Clark and David Moseley, and the facilitator Kjris Lund.  The names of the sixteen participants are listed below. When it is necessary […]

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Seattle May Be Slow, but We Are Catching Up

September 24th, 2016

In 2011 my friend Rep. Cindy Ryu drafted a bill to give cities authority to reduce city street speeds. The bill was based on research coming out of the UK and our own local friends in Portland among others, confirming why a “20 is Plenty” plan reduces injuries and accidents for all modes of traffic and brings […]

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Creating the Seattle Success Story for those who are unsheltered

September 17th, 2016

On September 8 in  my Human Services and Public Health committee we explored the conditions of being homeless in Seattle.  National experts offered their recommendations here: Barb Poppe, Focus Strategies, and the Mayor’s Pathways Home reports. You can watch a Seattle Channel video of the meeting with a majority of my Council colleagues here. We know that nearly 3000 people […]

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Paid Family Leave Symposium at the UW

August 12th, 2016

In 1979 when I had my second child, I worked at a local university. I gave birth to my son early Wednesday morning, and had to be back to the office the following Saturday morning to finish a legal brief. Yes, I had some unpaid time thereafter to stay home with him, but those six weeks passed […]

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The NRA and I Finally Agree

July 21st, 2016

Today at our Public Health Board meeting I learned a fact that may help me build my first bridge with the NRA: State wide in 2014, 1119 people took their own lives.  Nearly half —  551 — of these people shot themselves. Sadly, King County has one of the highest firearm suicide statistics in the […]

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San Francisco Trip Part III: Pit Stops

June 28th, 2016

I must have said this a thousand times: Seattle needs more public restrooms. We have them in some of our parks.  Why not Downtown? Yes, I am well aware that we have “tried this before”.  We should try it again and look south to San Francisco for a successful model. The City of San Francisco […]

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