By Chetanya Robinson
Seattle City Council members outlined specific plans for slashing the Seattle Police Department (SPD) budget in 2020 and reimagining how the city provides public safety, weeks after a veto-proof majority first committed to defunding the police by 50%.
The new proposals do not cut the department’s budget by 50% in 2020, falling short of demands from prominent community organizations after the the murder of George Floyd and city-wide demonstrations against systemic racism and police brutality.
Continue reading City Council Members Discuss Defunding Police in 2020 Budget — but Not by 50 Percent
by Carolyn Bick
Face-down in the gravel, hands cuffed behind her back, Ash could hear herself screaming. She had just been arrested by a group of Seattle Police Department (SPD) officers, who had come speeding across the grass towards a group of protestors at Cal Anderson Park during a Black Lives Matter protest on July 25.
Continue reading “I Was Just Laying on the Ground Screaming”: Protestors Recount Alleged Abuse While In Custody
by Carolyn Bick
Scanners have captured and recorded a conversation on a police radio frequency by people who appear to be Seattle Police Department officers in which the officers joke with one another about letting a bus slam into a cyclist at high speed.
“Well, if a bus happens to be going full speed and he gets in front of it, don’t try to stop the bus,” says an officer, after a second officer asks if they should arrest the cyclist.
Continue reading BREAKING: Scanner Allegedly Captures Disturbing Conversation Among SPD Officers
by Alex Garland
In these unprecedented times, change that once seemed improbable now appears inevitable to many in Seattle’s activist community who have spent years fighting for systemic and structural transformation. As protests and an expanding awareness of racial injustices endure across the nation, several of them find themselves hopeful of finally leaving behind a status quo that dehumanized and marginalized communities of color, LGBTQIA+ folx, and people with disabilities, to name but a few.
Continue reading Rest, Healing, Celebration, Accountability — Repeat: Persistent Resistance
by Carolyn Bick
The Emerald has discovered that two more Seattle Police Department (SPD) officers have registered non-residential addresses as their voting addresses, thereby apparently breaking voting laws. The discovery follows on the heels of the Emerald’s first article about six other SPD officers, including Seattle Police Officers Guild (SPOG) President Michael Solan, registering SPD precincts as voting addresses.
Continue reading BREAKING: Two More SPD Officers Appear to Break Election Law by Using Non-Residential Address to Vote
by Jordan Chaney
When Governor Inslee’s Senior Policy Advisor reached out to me in June of this year to be a part of the Task Force for Policing Reform and Racial Justice, both the activist and the dreamer in me fought for the wheel and began driving toward visions of systemic changes to laws and policies that would keep Black people psychologically and physically safe from unjust murder. I was ecstatic to finally have a seat at the table. The brain storm I wrote over the three days following the announcement of my appointment was around 5,000 words deep.
Continue reading Seeking Justice in a Sundown Town
by Dr. Daniel H. Low, Dr. Amish J. Dave, and Dr. Rajneet S. Lamba
In the aftermath of George Floyd’s death, a broad array of activists and public figures have called for defunding the police in towns and cities across the nation. For many Americans, police officers are often the first responders to small and large crises. While surveys suggest much of the public wants police reform, there is concern that defunding efforts could erode the safety of our communities. Other voices argue that mere police reform is insufficient. Research has shown that measures such as implicit bias training, body cam usage, and firing problem officers with a history of misconduct have not led to meaningful change. In the interest of public safety, we are all vested in understanding how acute crises would be addressed if we were to defund police departments.
Continue reading OPINION: Crisis Management Is What Doctors Do Every Day. The Police Can and Must Do Better.
by Carolyn Bick
The Seattle Community Police Commission, Office of Police Accountability, and Office of Inspector General have released a joint recommendation that the Seattle Police Department (SPD) stop using tear gas, due to the extra dangers it poses in light of the current novel coronavirus pandemic.
Continue reading Seattle CPC, OPA, OIG Release Recommendation that SPD Cease Use of Tear Gas, Due to Novel Coronavirus Concerns
by Ty Brown
What we are seeing today is not just about George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade and the horrific, continuous list of our murdered brothers and sisters — may they rest in power. This is about systemic injustice and systemic racism that has plagued this continent and our neighborhoods for 400 years.
These tragedies are constant reminders of the hate crimes, police brutality and systematic injustice the Black community faces far too frequently.
In Olympia, we’re thinking about our neighbors who have faced police brutality, negligence, and lost their lives due to an over-militarized and over-funded force: Yvonne McDonald, who died in mysterious circumstances; Andre Thompson and Bryson Chaplin, who were shot at by Olympia police and then each sentenced to prison terms; and Jackie Salyers, a Puyallup tribal member fatally shot by police in 2016.
Continue reading OPINION: Defund Police and Defend Black Lives — Why We Rally