State Senate candidate would be first person of color representing 34th District

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Photo courtesy of Joe Nguyen

Some know Joe Nguyen as a familiar face because he’s operated in the background of Seattle’s community and politics for so long. Now, he’s deciding to emerge out front, running for a seat in the state Senate representing Washington’s 34th District.

“It’s never really been about me,” Nguyen said of his decision to run. “There’s already great leaders, advocates and organizations in this community doing work. I don’t want to be arrogant and say I’m the one organizing all of these efforts.”

Via International Examiner

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After Tommy Le shooting, King County sheriff introduces new, less lethal weapons and policies

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Tommy Le’s uncle makes a speech for Tommy on the Public Forum on July 19, 2017 .• Photo by Cathy You

It’s been almost a year since Tommy Le was fatally shot by two members of the King County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO), and the KCSO falsely told the media and Le’s family that he held a knife during the confrontation. It’s been not much more than 100 days since the KCSO had a change in staff.

A number of Asian Pacific Islander (API) community members feel optimistic while others feel hesitant about upcoming changes under the newly elected sheriff, Mitzi Johanknecht.

Via International Examiner

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Local Muslim advocacy organization offers bystander intervention training

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The “Hassle Line” – a technique developed by the Civil Rights movement to prepare marchers for confrontations with harassers. [Photo courtesy of CAIR Washington]

Approximately 40 people came to learn bystander training from the Washington Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR-WA) on Jan. 13.

Bystander training is a nonviolent mechanism for community members to go out into the real world and prevent confrontations from escalating, prevent harassment or hate crimes, and act as better allies.

The training event included people who had experienced harassment as well as those who had only witnessed it.

Fatima Sheikh has experienced both.

Via International Examiner

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Memorial honors Seattle-raised Ed Lee, first Asian mayor of San Francisco

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Franklin High School’s auditorium was nearly full for the memorial of former San Francisco mayor Edwin Lee. (Photo: Kelsey Hamlin)

The streets by Franklin High School (FHS) were full of parked cars as many showed up to pay their respects Saturday for the recently deceased San Francisco Mayor Edwin Lee.

Edwin Mah Lee was born and raised in Seattle’s Beacon Hill neighborhood. Growing up, his siblings saw the traits of a leader. Lee often held meetings after school, usually for student government, while playing sports and working part time. Though reaching multiple positions of considerable status, Lee never forgot how hard his own mother worked, being a first generation immigrant who lost her husband early in life.

Via International Examiner

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Racial disparities, poverty the focus of state budget and policy summit

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Panelist Sheila Capestany, King County strategic advisor for children and youth [Photo by Kelsey Hamlin]

At a $70-per-ticket summit on December 7, attendees discussed Washington state’s budget and how to change it to benefit marginalized people and close wealth gaps.

“When progressives get together we usually agree with one another and vent about Trump and whatever,” said Lt. Gov. Cyrus Habib, a featured speaker at the Washington State Budget & Policy Center’s (WSBPC) Budget Matters Policy Summit. “A lot of times we talk about survival and we don’t take the next step to talk about prosperity. As long as we only focus on survival and we only focus on justice, the gap between the haves and the have-nots is going to get bigger.”

Via International Examiner

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Community feels left in the dark about Donnie Chin murder investigation

 

 

 

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Donnie Chin was perhaps one of the International District’s most beloved community members. He was a watchdog, a friend, and a family man. Since his death on July 23, 2015, when 59-year-old Chin was caught in the crossfire of what police say was gang violence, the Chinatown International District community and many others are still looking for answers. Last week marked month 25 since Chin’s death, and the fourth meeting the community held with the Seattle Police Department (SPD) at Nagomi Tea House.

“It’s sad to be here,” state Rep. Sharon Tomiko Santos, (D – Seattle) said. “I always hate to ask you to come and relive an unhealed wound.”

She noted that there were more cameras at this meeting than the last one, though there were only three. Santos, along with many other community leaders, feel they’ve been left in the dark when it comes to Chin’s investigation.

“This is simply not acceptable,” Santos said. “This community is also a part of the public to whom the police are accountable.”

Via International Examiner

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Jayapal leads Seattle town hall rally against Trumpcare

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Sen. Pramilla Jayapal answers audience questions about moving forward. (Photo by Kelsey Hamlin)

Town Hall Seattle filled with mostly seniors July 6, gathered together for Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal (D–Wash) as she talked about politicians’ strategies and proposals for America’s new healthcare.

The Republican base vowed to rail against the Affordable Care Act (ACA) before its implementation, quickly renaming it Obamacare in 2010. After that negative political nickname trickled down throughout America, now-President Donald Trump promised to repeal the ACA as soon as he got elected office. Now, seven months into his term, Republicans are still trying to replace it. […]

On July 27, the Senate cast their votes for the last standing Trumpcare bill. Hoards of protestors stood outside of the Washington D.C. Capitol shouting, “don’t kill us, kill the bill!” Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), and Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) voted against repealing Obamacare and against their own party’s wishes. People watching nationwide were nervous because McCain, recently diagnosed with cancer, was speaking out in support of the bill the entire week prior and even after his diagnosis. Without having obtained three more people against the bill on top of many democrats already against it, the legislation would have past. Still, many speculate it is not yet over.

[…]

a woman with gold-rimmed glasses stepped on stage. Her name: Leigh Pate. She’s a cancer survivor who finished another round of chemotherapy three weeks prior, due to fallopian tube cancer. Her bills, Pate explained, are already upward $300,000.

Before the ACA, Pate struggled to pay for her necessary medical interventions. She recalled that the ACA “was a tremendous burden lifted.” But that burden wasn’t lifted for too long.

“Two weeks ago, I got a love letter from my insurance company,” Pate said. The paper alerted her to no longer having coverage. She held up the paper.

“I spent the rainy morning at my kitchen table—still sick from having chemo three days before—researching which insurance company might offer me an individual policy.”

She knew losing her insurance meant never getting coverage because of her pre-existing condition: Cancer. Missing a payment meant getting dropped.

“There are people sitting around kitchen tables all around this country who got the same letter as I did,” Pate said. “They’re using their precious energy worrying about their health finances.”