by Leslie Dozono, Lauren Hipp, Vy Nguyen, and Erin Okuno
In spring of 2019, the Washington State legislature passed I-1000 which allows for considerations like race, sex, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, veteran status, religion, ethnicity, and citizenship status to be a factor when considering a person for public education or employment opportunities, overturning Initiative 200, which banned those considerations in the 1990s. While many people support affirmative action, there was opposition — including from a vocal group of Asians claiming they stand for equality collecting signatures to take Referendum Measure 88 to the voters in hopes of repealing the new law. This is our response to our community and our ask of our families: decline to sign and say NO to Referendum Measure 88.
Continue reading OPINION: Support Fair Opportunity, Decline to Sign Referendum 88 →
by Sam Cho, Board of Directors, Asian Pacific Americans for Civic Empowerment (APACE) and Commissioner with the Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs (CAPAA)
History is repeating itself on affirmative action. Except this time it feels different. Perhaps it’s because of the national attention around the lawsuit against Harvard. Or maybe it’s because Washington State is wrestling with its own version of the debate around the repeal of Initiative 200, that ended affirmative action in Washington in 1998. But once again, the discourse around affirmative action has been hijacked to be about how race-conscious policies are hurting Asian Americans.
Continue reading OPINION Now is the Time to Stand in Solidarity on Affirmative Action →
At a recent workshop on Martin Luther King Jr. Day titled “Affirmative Action = Justice: Poets Bearing Witness,” poet Jacqueline (Jaye) Ware began with a spoken word litany making the case for affirmative action.
“If it wasn’t for slavery, for unjust Jim Crow laws, for cross-burnings, for police harassment, for separate but unequal schools … affirmative action would not be a necessary tool to dismantle 400 years of oppression,” she said.
Continue reading MLK Event Highlights Support for 2019 Affirmative Action Initiative →
Initiative 1000 seeks to reverse the impact Initiative 200 had in the 1990s.
by Sharayah Lane
As Carl Livingston stood behind the curtain, he took deep breaths, prayed and worked (in vain) to calm his nerves. In a few moments he, a Black man, would be going out in front of hundreds to debate a white man on the merits of Affirmative Action in the state of Washington.
Continue reading Affirmative Action Returning to Washington Ballots →
by Susan Fried
“There is a difference between a moment and a movement,” said Gabriel Prawl, the President of the Seattle branch of the A. Philip Randolph Association. “The meaning of a movement is sacrifice, a moment is we are just here today, we go home and it’s over, a movement is when we leave here today we continue to do something that makes change, we continue to organize, to bring people together, we continue to face the issues and we are not afraid to speak to power.”
Continue reading Million Worker March Event Highlights Local Efforts for Equity →
by Susan Fried
A small crowd lead by a group of religious and community leaders marched a short distance down Rev. Dr. Samuel McKinney Avenue to Mount Zion Baptist Church on Tuesday, August 18, to celebrate the 55th Anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Justice and to kickoff the Initiative 1000 Campaign. Initiative 1000 would repeal the effects of I-200 which was passed on 1998 and effectively ended affirmative action in Washington state.
Continue reading Photo Essay: 55th Anniversary of March on Washington kicks off Initiative 1000 →