Thousands of frontline workers at large grocery stores in Seattle will soon see a $4-per-hour raise under emergency hazard-pay legislation passed Monday, Jan. 25, by the City Council. Labor leaders hope the new rule will inspire similar action around Puget Sound, including neighboring Burien and unincorporated King County.
The increase requires Seattle grocery businesses with 500 or more total employees to raise workers’ hourly wages by $4 in recognition of the higher risk of contracting COVID-19 involved in their work. The measure does not apply to small businesses, convenience stores, or farmers markets.
The City Council approved the bill on an 8–0 vote, allowing it to take effect as soon as the mayor signs it. That’s expected to happen next Wednesday, Feb. 3, Durkan’s staff told the Emerald in an email.
At the end of a demanding year responding to the COVID-19 crisis and overseeing controversial police tactics during to Black Lives Matter protests, Mayor Jenny Durkan announced on Dec. 7 that she will not seek re-election.
In several interviews and in a video announcing her decision, Durkan said her decision came down to a choice: Run a successful re-election campaign or devote all her attention to being mayor in the final year of her term.
“I could spend the next year campaigning to keep this job or focus all my energy on doing the job,” Durkan said. “There was only one right choice for our city: Doing the job.”
To gauge how the South End feels about the mayor’s eventual departure, the Emerald spoke with local groups and community members about what the mayor’s decision means to them and their view for the city.
by Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda (Position 8, Citywide)
The Seattle City Council’s fall budget process this year will be vastly different in many ways, as this moment demands elected leaders to step up and address a multitude of overlapping crises that are presenting themselves at once: an ongoing public health emergency that is COVID-19, a racial reckoning calling for investments in true community safety and long-term systemic change, a climate crisis made palpable by weeks of choking wildfire smoke, and we’re still in the midst of an affordable housing and homelessness crisis that plays out in our streets in every neighborhood in Seattle and in the lives of thousands of our neighbors.
The Morning Update Show — hosted by Trae Holiday and The Big O (Omari Salisbury) — is the only weekday news and information livestream that delivers culturally relevant content to the Pacific Northwest’s urban audience. Omari and Trae analyze the day’s local and national headlines as well as melanin magic in our community. Watch live every weekday at 11 a.m. on any of the following channels, hosted by Converge Media: YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, Periscope, and whereweconverge.com.
We’ll also post the Morning Update Show here on the Emerald each day after it airs, so you can catch up any time of day while you peruse our latest posts.
Morning Update Show — Thursday, October 1
Today on the Morning Update Show:
Tonight’s Historic Town Hall
Durkan Cuts Navigation Team
Mosqueda Voices Concerns About Durkan Budget
ACLU Files Suit Against City and SPD (Again)
Attempted Arson at Black-Owned Coffee Shop in Shoreline
Washington State Data Hack
Crystal Fincher and Michael Charles Weigh in on Town Hall
With a new big business tax proposal from Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda (At Large representative), the Seattle City Council is now weighing two plans to fund COVID-19 relief for Seattle with progressive revenue sources.
As the Seattle Police Department announced it was removing all “sensitive items” from the East Precinct building on Capitol Hill in anticipation of another long night of protests, the Seattle City Council adopted a number of strongly worded resolutions demanding action earlier Monday afternoon.