Category Archives: Opinion

Op-Ed: Innovative “First in Time” Law Sets Out a Fair Rental Application Process for Everyone

by Merf Ehman and Julie Nelson

Most people believe in the fundamental value of fair opportunity for all. Unfortunately, despite the progress we’ve made as a City, housing opportunity is not equal across different racial and ethnic groups in Seattle, with some communities facing steep and unequal obstacles. It will be to our collective benefit to remove these obstacles. Providing fair opportunity allows us to operate in accordance with our values. The First in Time Proposal, that requires landlords to review rental applications in chronological order, is designed to do just that. Continue reading Op-Ed: Innovative “First in Time” Law Sets Out a Fair Rental Application Process for Everyone

Metro’s Subcontracting of Access Paratransit Puts Disabled Riders at Risk and Drains Taxpayer Dollars

by Susan Koppelman

Metro Access is a federally mandated transportation service for people with disabilities and the elderly, but don’t let the name fool you. Metro subcontracts every aspect of the service to three independent contractors: Veolia/Transdev, First Transit, and Solid Ground.
Continue reading Metro’s Subcontracting of Access Paratransit Puts Disabled Riders at Risk and Drains Taxpayer Dollars

Op-Ed: Tainted Appeals Process Speeds Construction of Youth Jail

by Ending the Prison Industrial Complex (E.P.I.C)

Seattle and King County are promoted nationally as progressive jurisdictions, and our elected officials, particularly right now, vie to distinguish themselves as aligned with racial and social justice. This week we had a special opportunity to examine the realities behind these claims. A month ago, a memo from Mayor Murray to King County Executive Dow Constantine was released, describing the Mayor’s serious concerns about the jail project. Continue reading Op-Ed: Tainted Appeals Process Speeds Construction of Youth Jail

Op-Ed: Embrace the Work to Be Done to Make Zero Detention a Reality

by Anne Lee, Janis Avery, Estela Ortega, Rosa Peralta, Dominique Davis, Diane Narasaki, Terry Pottmeyer, Ben Danielson

Vibrant, community voices have led our city and county elected officials to call for a pause and reset on the county’s proposed juvenile and family justice center and youth jail. But one can read hesitation in those offers and ample room to fall back into a mainstream narrative about the youth caught up in the juvenile justice system and the necessity of a jail. That narrative suggests that only “violent youth” are incarcerated, that opposition to the youth jail comes from the fringe – a “vocal minority”, and that community has fully informed decisions that have been made. This narrative is not wholly accurate and has the effect of discounting the community members, leaders and youth who have been deep in this fight for equity and justice. Continue reading Op-Ed: Embrace the Work to Be Done to Make Zero Detention a Reality

Op-Ed: Yes, Seattle Needs An Income Tax

by Andrew Kidde

Our tax system is badly broken.  It’s bound by a 1935 Supreme Court case that says income tax is unconstitutional. Washington State is 1 of 7 states that has no income tax. We do have a large chunk of revenue collected as sales tax which is why our tax system has been recently rated the most regressive (can’t we just say unfair?) in the country.  Continue reading Op-Ed: Yes, Seattle Needs An Income Tax

Op-Ed: The Road Diet Starts at My House

by Paul Nelson

The Road Diet Starts at My House

It’s a regular part of the soundscape from the swinging Angeline at 4801 Rainier Av S. The Rainier Avenue South “Road Diet” – designed and engineered by the Seattle Department of Transportation – starts right before the large apartment building and it’s right about at the spot where many turn into the lot to go to PCC that we hear the blaring of yet another car horn. Five or six very un-Seattle nice-like seconds of angst. It pierces the Keith Jarrett, Gary Burton or Carla Bley vibe on the box here in our third-floor nest and we don’t bother looking anymore unless it’s accompanied by a crash, which happens now and then, between sirens.
Continue reading Op-Ed: The Road Diet Starts at My House