by Carolyn Bick
Though officials say this year’s expanded flu vaccination clinic offerings are specifically meant to serve uninsured and underinsured communities of color and people experiencing homelessness, many of whom live in South Seattle, most of the clinics available in South Seattle appear to have relatively few open clinic slots.
Continue reading City Touts Free Vaccination Sites for Uninsured in South Seattle, but Limited Dates Available
by Paul Kiefer
(This article previously appeared on PubliCola and has been reprinted under an agreement.)
On Friday morning, Mayor Jenny Durkan’s office released a new report from the City’s Budget Office and the Seattle Police Department showing a record-breaking number of officer separations from SPD in September. In that month alone, 39 officers and officers in training left the department — double the number of officers leaving in the next-highest month on record. Without an end to the ongoing hiring freeze (a part of the City’s COVID-related austerity), SPD and the Budget Office project the department to continue hemorrhaging sworn staff well into 2021, potentially exceeding the staffing cuts proposed by the City Council during the summer.
The pending staff shortage places the department at risk of falling further out of compliance with the conditions of the Federal consent decree, increasing the likelihood that SPD will remain under the supervision of the Department of Justice for years to come. (Federal District Court Judge James Robart, responsible for overseeing Seattle’s consent decree for the Department of Justice, already ruled the City partially out of compliance in 2019).
Continue reading Seattle Police Department Announces Record-Breaking Attrition
by Elizabeth Turnbull
On Oct. 15, applications opened for the City of Seattle’s COVID-19 disaster relief fund for immigrants, which includes $9 million to help residents who have immigrated to the U.S. and are impacted by COVID-19 — many of whom have struggled to receive federal aid.
Of the funds, $7.94 million will provide direct cash assistance to low-income individuals who have immigrated to the U.S. Eligible households and individuals will receive between $1,000 and $3,000 in funds, depending on income levels. In addition, parties who were not eligible for aid from the federal CARES Act coronavirus stimulus program will be prioritized.
“Undocumented immigrants pay into our local and state tax system. They’re a part of our economy and communities, yet are qualified for few benefits when they need it most,” City Council President González said in a recent statement on the fund. “This has to change, and the City of Seattle is stepping up to ensure we provide equitable safety nets and resources for our immigrant families and neighbors.”
Continue reading City of Seattle Launches New $9 Million Aid Program for Immigrants in Wake of Pandemic
by Ben Adlin
Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan announced Wednesday the initial members of a new City taskforce to recommend ways to spend a proposed $100 million in funding aimed at benefiting Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) communities.
Coming in response to energetic Black Lives Matter protests throughout the spring and summer, Durkan first made the $100 million proposal last month as part of her budget plan for the coming year.
The mayor said the 28-member task force addresses “deep disparities caused by systemic racism and institutionalized oppression.” But some racial justice organizers say her plan overshadows demands made by protesters and could ultimately turn communities of color against one another.
Continue reading Durkan Announces Members of Proposed $100 Million BIPOC Task Force, Drawing Criticism From Activists
by Jack Russillo
The number of COVID-19 cases has increased recently in South Seattle and South King County, which prompted a visit from the governor and spurred an increase in testing for COVID-19.
Continue reading COVID-19 Testing Available in South Seattle, but Turnaround Times a Concern
by Carolyn Bick
The City of Seattle and the UW Medicine have launched two free novel coronavirus testing sites in Seattle, one of which is located in South Seattle’s SODO area.
In a press conference with several health professionals and Seattle Fire Department (SFD) personnel, Mayor Jenny Durkan and UW President Ana Maria Cauce announced the launch of the North Seattle and South Seattle testing sites, which open Friday, June 5. The South Seattle site will be located at 3820 6th Ave. S. Both sites will be open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Continue reading City of Seattle and UW Medicine Partner to Launch Two Free Testing Sites
by Carolyn Bick
The mountain of trash that caught fire in South Seattle on the afternoon of May 18 has been sitting under Interstate 5 for several years, according to both residents of the encampment in which the trash pile is located, and outreach workers. But though officials from both the City of Seattle and Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) have in that time visited the encampment, and the city’s Navigation Team appears to have done a full encampment sweep in late May 2018, neither city nor state officials have taken action to remove the trash.
Continue reading Encampment Residents, Outreach Workers Say Trash Pile Beneath I-5 Six Years Old, But Officials Haven’t Taken Action
by Carolyn Bick
Both documented and undocumented renters worried about their April rent payments will be able to breathe a little easier for at least a month, thanks to the United Way of King County’s emergency rental assistance program.
Continue reading United Way of King County Unveils Rental Assistance Program for Those Impacted by COVID-19
by Emerald Staff
King County Elections has already received more than 30,000 ballots, but there are still five more days to vote before the results are tallied on Aug. 6. The results will determine which candidates move forward into the general election, most notably in the packed races for Seattle City Council seats representing seven geographic districts around the city.
Continue reading Primary Election Ballots Due Tuesday
How will communities of color be served?
by Carolyn Bick/InvestigateWest
Giving the small, lithe trunk of a baby conifer a gentle shake, Georgetown resident Andrew Schiffer looks up and says in a concerned tone, “See? These aren’t getting water.”
Continue reading Will Seattle Finally Protect South End Trees? A Leafy Promise Left Unfulfilled