by Tyler Adamson
Considering the Seattle City Council’s recent conversations on zoning laws, it’s particularly pertinent to dig a little deeper into the topic, especially as it applies to accessibility and the racist and segregatory intent which these laws were originally designed. However, the notion that zoning laws are at the root cause of our disparate housing system is simply short-sighted.
Continue reading OPINION: So-Called Affordable Housing is Still Out of Reach for Many Seattleites
OpEds by Got Green appear in the South Seattle Emerald every month.
by Hodan Hassan and Tanika Thompson-Bird
The climate is changing. We know that, but the past few weeks brought it to the forefront of our minds. Remember the snow? The snow that fell from the sky and trapped us in our homes for days? That was a sign of how the changing climate is impacting our weather patterns — snow storm in Seattle, a rainstorm in Southern California and 60-degree weather in DC. Seattle is not prepared for snow in any capacity. The streets weren’t cleaned, public transit was a disaster, and people couldn’t get out of their homes.
Continue reading OPINION — Snowy Winters & Smokey Summers: Preparing for the Future
by Mia Gregerson and Manka Dhingra
Ensuring mother and child thrive in childbirth and beyond are among the highest on our list of American values. However, the United States remains only one of eight nations in the world with a rising maternal mortality rate — and black mothers are dying at 1.5 to two times the rate of white mothers in childbirth.
Continue reading OPINION: Statewide Office of Equity Can Reduce Systemic Racial Inequalities
by Denaya Shorter
A quick online search of opportunities for Seattle youth yields pages upon pages of available services and programs — summer day camps for children, mentoring groups for tweens, internships for high school teens, fellowships for college students. But what about our young adults? What happens to our young people who make it through the struggle of societal pressures, and the many challenges of the journey to adulthood, and are looking to enter the workforce? How are we supporting these youth?
Continue reading OPINION: The Youth Green Corps is the “Future of Work” for Seattle Parks and Recreation
by Aaron Burkhalter
City staffers from the Human Services Department, community members, and activists say that Mayor Jenny Durkan sidestepped the city’s own procedures and race-equity process in the appointment of Jason Johnson as the director of the Human Services Department (HSD).
Continue reading HSD Staffers, Community Seek Racial Equity In Human Services Department Director Appointment
by Carolyn Bick
With the exception of Councilmember Kshama Sawant, the Seattle City Council almost unanimously passed its $5.9 billion 2019-20 budget.
The nine-member council voted 8-to-1 in favor of passing a budget that included increases in funding for police and the city’s homelessness outreach program, as well as funding for a new program aimed at low-acuity mental health response. The budget largely reflected what Mayor Jenny Durkan originally proposed, with minor changes.
Continue reading Seattle City Council $6 Billion Budget Reflects Incremental Change
by Lavanya Madhusudan
There is an acute lack of representation of people of color in the green sector. According to the thoroughly researched Green 2.0 report, the percentage of minorities on the boards or general staff of environmental organizations in the US does not exceed 16 percent. Once hired in environmental organizations, ethnic minorities are concentrated in the lower ranks. As a result, ethnic minorities occupy less than 12 percent of leadership positions in the green sector.
Continue reading OPINION: Urge City Council to Support Green Pathways Fellowship Program
by Aaron Burkhalter
Councilmember Mike O’Brien took a stroll through a new solution to homelessness and the city’s lack of affordable housing.
It was a short walk — the length of a long trailer. At just a couple hundred square feet, the tiny cottage has enough room for a small table for two — maybe three — people, a downstairs queen-sized bed and an upstairs loft where children could sleep. It has a kitchen, indoor plumbing, and electricity, but it sits on a trailer hook up that is secured to the ground in the backyard of a home in Kent.
Continue reading From Pilot Projects to Systemic Change: Seattle City Council Mulls Solutions to Homelessness in Biennial Budget
by Geov Parrish
Sept. 23, hundreds packed Seattle City Council chambers and an overflow room for their first chance to offer public testimony on Mayor Jenny Durkan’s proposed 2019-20 budget, and potential council amendments to it. Some 140 people and groups signed up to offer testimony in what turned out to be a frequently emotional four-hour marathon that hopefully left council members — at least those who weren’t looking at their phones all evening — a lot to think about. To her credit, Councilmember Sally Bagshaw chaired the hearing with a notably fairer and more restrained hand than council President Bruce Harrell employs in contentious council meetings.
Continue reading OPINION: Passionate Testimony Brightens a Bleak Seattle Budget
by Elizabeth Whitford, CEO of School’s Out Washington, Jessica Werner, Executive Director of Youth Development Executives of King County, Erin Okuno, Executive Director of Southeast Seattle Education Coalition
It is an exciting time for children, youth, and families in Seattle. The future holds promise with a new superintendent, city government and the school district working more closely together, and community support for critical educational programs. However, Seattle Public Schools still faces many challenges in its commitment to closing opportunity gaps and ensuring excellence in education for every student.
Continue reading Opinion: Say Yes to City of Seattle Proposition 1, Renewing Our Commitment to Seattle’s Kids