by Families of Color Seattle (FOCS)
We are horrified and deeply saddened by the latest news uncovering the egregious treatment of a Black student at View Ridge Elementary School. As recently reported by KUOW, a Black second-grader named Jaleel at View Ridge Elementary School was locked up in an outdoor cage without a table or chair, multiple times, left to eat his lunch off the tray on the ground. Adult school staff, entrusted to teach and keep Jaleel safe, decided instead that putting him repeatedly (sometimes for the entire school day) in a fenced outdoor space dubbed “the cage” was an appropriate restraint for a second-grader.
Continue reading No More Black and Brown Children in Cages: The Reality of Racism and Ableism in SPS Today
by Carolyn Bick
In early 2016, Micah Smith found himself interested in a particular American Medical Response (AMR) ambulance service employee. So, he texted her a few times to see if she was interested in going on a date.
Problem was, Smith — a Seattle Police Department (SPD) officer — had gotten her phone number by “inappropriately using his law enforcement access to obtain her cell phone number from a police report in which she was listed as a witness and in which the Named Employee [Smith] had no involvement,” according to the official summary of the case by the Office of Police Accountability (OPA), which was called the Office of Professional Accountability when the report was filed in 2016. Two of four other allegations against Smith were also sustained.
For all of this, then- Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole handed down an eight-day suspension. OPA’s Director of Public Affairs Anne Bettesworth said in an email to the Emerald on the morning of Aug. 21 that all suspensions are without pay, but that “[w]hether or not the employee gave up vacation time during that suspension is not something OPA could answer.” This means Smith could have used vacation time to cover what would have been unpaid days.
Continue reading OPA Documents Show Current SPD Officer Misused Internal Police Data to Try to Get a Date, “Caused Anxiety and Concern”