Washington State House Democrats


Monday, July 26

Chart showing racial disparities in Seattle police stops and use of force.

Report: Seattle police stop Black people, Native Americans at far higher rate than white people
Seattle police watchdogs and civil libertarians say they are alarmed and disappointed by a new report showing officers — despite nearly a decade under federal oversight partly intended to address bias — continue to stop and use force against Black people in the city far more often than white people. The report found that Black people, per capita, were seven times more likely to be subjected to force by Seattle police than white people, and five times more likely to be stopped and questioned. Native Americans in the city were nine times more likely to be stopped, it said. Continue reading at The Seattle Times. (Mark Nowlin)

Amy Towle works her morning shift as team leader at Taco Bell in Lacey.

For minimum wage workers, there’s no catching up with the rent
Until last month, Mikayla Droz slept on the floor of a one-bedroom apartment she shared with two other people. Before that, she lived in a trailer in what she describes as a “commune” near Tumwater, a two-hour walk from the nearest bus stop. Droz, who earns $15 per hour working overnight shifts as an in-home caregiver, is just one example among many low-wage workers who must seek increasingly creative arrangements to scrape by as housing costs in Olympia skyrocket. Continue reading at The Olympian. (Tony Overman)

Map showing where public option plans are and are not available in Washington state.

Despite law, 20 WA counties don’t offer public-option health plans
Two years ago, Washington state lawmakers passed a public-option health care bill, with the goal of making it easier and cheaper for Washington residents to buy health insurance. Yet in about half the state’s counties, if you try to buy a public-option plan run by the state government, you’ll be out of luck. The spotty availability of the new public-option plans is one of several hiccups that arose during the rollout of Washington’s new, government-procured health care program. Continue reading at Crosscut.


Associated Press
Wear a mask, King County health official advises as COVID cases rise, variant spreads
Confusion besets new police reform laws in Washington state (Johnson)

Aberdeen Daily World
Aberdeen Council discusses cost, benefits of regional fire authority
Bellingham Herald
This new Whatcom initiative hopes to give students help to take action on climate change
This is what Bellingham, Whatcom did when YouTube removed videos with false COVID claims
Updated: Washington sees 5th wave of COVID. This is what the state now recommends on masking
Everett Herald
As police adjust to reforms, crisis responders feel deserted (Johnson, Goodman, Dhingra, Pedersen)
DUI Victims Memorial Wall moving to county government campus
Suicides from Deception Pass Bridge renew calls for barriers
Proposal to lay cables under Columbia met with skepticism
Officials urge vaccinations as Delta variant takes root
Heat wave melted county roads, buckled sidewalks
Bloomberg Comment: Homelessness was on decline, until we changed course
Op-Ed: Cydney Gillis: Land mine tripped in covid’s office battlefield
Opinion: The ignorance and lies that live Nextdoor
Opinion: Analogies are useful tools but they can be misused

The Facts Newspaper
New laws take effect in Washington State aimed at bridging the digital divide (Hansen)

Kitsap Sun
‘It never ends:’ Where Kitsap’s recycling rubbish goes to find a new life

News Tribune
Pierce County starts plans for homeless shelters in Fife, Lakewood, Spanaway
Puyallup hits pause button on implementing new state laws regarding homeless shelters
‘Traitor’ graffiti near Fircrest homes with Black Lives Matter signs stirs confusion, concern
New security plan may remove police officers from Tacoma schools. What you need to know
Leadership shake-up announced at Tacoma psychiatric hospital with history of challenges
PenMet evicts Fox Island park hosts, leaving neighbors angry and dismayed

New York Times
Scenes From America’s Largest Wildfire
A voting rights group backed by athletes launches a campaign focused on criminal justice reform.
They Waited, They Worried, They Stalled. This Week, They Got the Shot.

Olympia police chief describes huge changes in policing dictated by new state laws
Thurston County issues toxic algae warning for Pattison Lake
For minimum wage workers, there’s no catching up with the rent

Peninsula Daily News
WHAT WE KNOW: Coronavirus outbreak at a glance
National association supports mandating vaccinations
Hundreds of area hospital workers unvaccinated
Clallam County commissioners to consider rescue funds for utility assistance
Wildfires blasting through West draw states to lend support
Conservation urged in water systems
Peninsula fire danger high

Puget Sound Business Journal
How tech won the pandemic and now may never lose
Seattle-area female AEC execs take aim at discrimination, other work-related wrongs
More companies are tying executive pay to diversity goals
Amazon signals growing interest in digital currency

Seattle Times
COVID-19 now a ‘pandemic of the unvaccinated’? Not so fast
Report: Seattle police stop Black people, Native Americans at far higher rate than white people
Seattle struck a ‘grand bargain’ on housing. Now City Hall is reviewing the initial results.
A homeless encampment led Seattle to close a spray park. What does that say about how the city views public spaces?
‘Mr. Barricade’ promotes quick-build bike lanes, talks road design on TikTok
Driven by pandemic, social media use surged in Seattle
Washington State Patrol’s toxicology lab ran tests in office contaminated by meth, possibly jeopardizing thousands of cases
Opinion: Come together to save Puget Sound and Snake River salmon
Editorial: Democrats must be ready to go it alone to protect Dreamers

Skagit Valley Herald
Number of new COVID-19 cases continues to rise in Skagit County

Tri-City Herald
30-year-old among 3 recent Tri-Cities area deaths due to COVID
This is what saved the Tri-Cities area from rolling blackouts in historic heatwave, says BPA
COVID vaccines up to challenge of variants
Richland researchers innovating to keep you cool for less in triple-digit temps
Critics say Tri-Cities lawyer is ‘cashing in on people’s fears’ with student mask exemptions
Floating mass of weeds clogs Columbia Cup return to Tri-Cities

Walla Walla Union Bulletin
COVID vaccines up to challenge of variants
Walla Walla Valley officials draft plan to combat affordable housing crisis

Washington Post
Biden officials closely monitor delta variant in U.K. as their anxieties mount over impact to U.S. economy
Doctors, nurses and medical groups call for mandatory coronavirus vaccinations for health workers
‘Some are still suffering’: Months after Capitol riot, police who fought the mob contend with physical, psychological pain
As coronavirus surges, GOP lawmakers are moving to limit public health powers

Yakima Herald Republic
Yakima housing market hot for both buyers and sellers
Comment: Make room for the nonbinary
Opinion: Will new police rules solve the problem?


Officials await clarification over new law enforcement reform bill ‘misconceptions’ (Johnson)
Community organizations continue their mission to reduce violence in Seattle
These new Washington laws went into effect on Sunday

Citing delta variant, King County urges indoor masks
Seattle-based cruises resume with new COVID protocols

4th person killed overnight in Seattle’s deadly weekend of gun violence

King County health official recommends going back to masking up indoors
How Some Districts Are Trying To Get Anxious Families Back Into School Buildings

‘It will place individuals at a greater risk’: Police worry about new laws, social justice groups welcome the changes

Q13 TV (Fox)
Loved ones mourn victim in Seattle shooting as witnesses recover from traumatic night of gun violence


Despite law, 20 WA counties don’t offer public-option health plans (Cody, Frockt)
Skagit dams in crosshairs of renewed push to save salmon, orcas

Seattle City Council set to vote on street parking rate increase in Uptown neighborhood
Law enforcement calls for Attorney General’s opinion on new police laws (Johnson, Goodman, Dhingra)
Health officials worried about a fifth wave in COVID cases, delta variant
SPD’s protest response did more harm than good according to new report
Seattle aims to redirect money from departed SPD officers to ‘alternative’ 911 response efforts
King County health officer recommends everyone wear a mask ‘once again’
Washington town ‘might have poorest air quality on the planet’ due to wildfires

La Raza del Noroeste
¡Por las comunidades, para las comunidades!
El estado pide a los proveedores que sigan trabajando para impulsar la vacunación contra la COVID-19

Northwest Asian Weekly
$10.4 M to community organizations focused on BIPOC safety