Category Archives: The Other Washington

All Things Washington State

Washington State News Info and Political Action

Inslee signs executive order to protect Orcas and Chinook salmon


 Both species are iconic to Washington and a vital part of tourism, maritime industries

The bison of Montana, the alligators of Florida, the wild horses of Colorado — every state has a signature species it takes pride in.

Washington is lucky enough to have two iconic animals: orcas and salmon, whose destinies are both intertwined and in peril.

In Puget Sound, the population of Southern Resident killer whales has declined from 98 in 1995 to 76 today. The diets of southern resident orcas consist largely of Chinook salmon, but the Chinook are listed on federal and state endangered species lists. If the Chinook population continues to decline, the southern resident orca population will follow.

Recognizing the dire need to protect both these species, Gov. Jay Inslee signed an executive order today outlining a strategy for southern resident orca and Chinook recovery.

The order instructs state agencies to outline immediate steps and long-term solutions to recover these species. The order also assembles a task force to bring together state agencies, tribal leaders, local governments, federal partners and other stakeholders to make recommendations at the state, regional and federal levels.

Read the rest of the story on the governor’s Medium page. and the official Executive Order 18-02 is below

“The destiny of salmon and orca and we humans are intertwined,” the governor said at a news conference at the Daybreak Star Cultural Center in Seattle. “As the orca go, so go we.”

“This is a wake-up call,” Suquamish Tribal Chairman Leonard Forsman said, adding, “It’s going to take some pain. We’re going to have to make some sacrifices.”  also stated  below

Suquamish Tribe Chairman Leonard Forsman reiterated the urgency of protecting the southern residents.

“The orca whales are vital to our culture and spirituality as we are the first people on Puget Sound,” Forsman said. “They act as sentinels, observing our behavior and its impacts on the health of our waters. They bless us with their presence and depend on us to keep our sacred pact with the Creator to care for this beautiful land.”

“The orca dilemma is giving us a unique opportunity,” Solien said. “Our goal is to recover the orca, recover the salmon (and) improve the quality of life for everyone.”

Media Contact

Tara Lee
Governor Inslee’s Communications Office
360.902.4136

March 14, 2018

comments & resources

govenor.wa.gov  japantimes.co.jp  medium.com

 

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In the Newsroom with Gov.Inslee ~ Jan 1- March 27 2018


Push for Domestic-worker benefits! ICYMI: Diapers @ Seattle City Hall!


We are Working Washington

In case you missed it: Last Thursday morning, domestic workers with the Seattle Domestic Workers Alliance (SDWA) came together at Seattle City Hall. They assembled a massive village of thousands of diapers and gloves representing nannies & house cleaners across the city. (And Working WA members donated $ to help buy the diapers, which we passed on to WestSide Baby for families in need when the action was over — if you’d like to donate too, click here!)

It was all in the name of making their voices heard in support of a Domestic Workers Bill of Rights. And the action was a huge success!

After building the display outside City Hall, workers headed inside to take a seat at the table with City Council members and share their stories. Here’s Ty, a nanny, musician, and Working Washington leader, talking about her experience:

And here’s Etelbina, a house cleaner, sharing her story:

[For transcriptions & translations of the videos, please click here.]

Workers like Ty & Etelbina have led the way for the Domestic Workers Bill of Rights — and City Council members are taking notice:

When workers unite and speak out, big changes happen — and bringing together house cleaners, home care workers, and nannies in one room under one united voice was a huge step forward in making a Domestic Workers Bill of Rights a reality in Seattle.

The Bill of Rights would ensure domestic workers get basic rights like the minimum wage, paid time off, and protections from harassment and discrimination. Most importantly, it establishes a worker council — a governing body made up of workers, employers, and city representatives — so that workers have a voice in setting higher industry standards. Click here if you’d like to donate to keep us moving forward.

Cheers,
Working Washington

P.S. Want to check out more coverage from the event? Check out the articles in the Seattle Times and the Stranger.

Know Your Rights … Council member Teresa Mosqueda ~ repost


Our Work Continues

We’re One Month In to 2018, and I am excited to report that we are on track to get some good things done this year. January is where we begin preparing our workplans for the year, and my team has been listening to the community, identifying priorities for the Housing, Health, Energy, and Workers’ Rights Committee this year.Watch a quick video update here.

In the Community

We have also been out in the community, meeting you where you are – from the Ft. Lawton discussion around housing in Magnolia, to meeting with workers in the north end at Seattle City Light; speaking on Capitol Hill at the Seattle Womxn’s March, to the Central District marching in solidarity as we honor the activism and radical change that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. fought for within the #PoorPeoplesCampaign (link). We keep Dr. King’s legacy alive not by celebrating him one day, but by acting daily to create greater shared power and economic prosperity

The first few weeks of this year were filled with news about Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids on workplaces as the Trump administration ramps up on its arrests and deportations of our immigrant communities. Workers from New York to California, from those who work at 7-11 to those who work as activists, are being targeted. Here in our own city, Seattle ICE served nationally known immigrant rights activists Maru Mora Villalpando (click here to join the campaign to defend Maru). This is an issue that affects employers and employees. We ask you to share this information around with your employees, neighbors, and friends – both employers and employees have rights! Share this information below today!

What’s Next?

We are gearing up for a busy year. In the coming months, watch my office for introduction of legislation to expand efforts to make easier to access the Seattle City Light discount rate program for low- and moderate-income families throughout Seattle. We will be advancing legislation to codify the elimination of sub-minimum wage for workers with disabilities (a rule in place but changing it into law). We will be working in coordination with the Office of Housing and community partners to look at ways ease community-initiated development of affordable housing throughout our city to address the affordable housing crisis. In the upcoming month, look for future conversations around the Domestic Workers’ Bill of Rights, to create stronger protections for workers – who are more likely to be women and people of color – to have greater workplace protections!

Want to keep up to date with what we are working on? Follow us on Facebook or Twitter, and keep an eye on our blog, where we’ll be diving into greater detail on topics in our committee and before your City Council.

In Solidarity,

Teresa Mosqueda
Seattle City Council Councilmember, Position 8
teresa.mosqueda@seattle.gov
206-684-8806

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We are Working Washington

tipping hand The US Labor Department is pushing controversial new rules which would allow management to pocket money from tip pools. When an official economic impact analysis found workers would lose billions of dollars of tips if the rules were implemented, senior department officials chose to block the publication of the analysis and go forward with the proposal.

 

judge Does this look legal to you? A multinational tech company called Pactera is advertising an entry-level data analyst job in Redmond… with an ad that says candidates have to be “born and brought up in the USA.” Working Washington members are applying for the job on Indeed.com with cover letters explaining what they think about this kind of discrimination.

 

upside down faceDebtors prisons were abolished in the US in the 19th century, and yet increasing numbers of people are in fact getting locked up for owing money, as detailed in a disturbing report by Rebecca Burns in The Intercept. The way it works is that after people are issued civil judgments for unpaid debt, they can be issued a warrant for their arrest if they fail to show up for the judgment — and then held if they can’t make the bail. The result: being poor leaves you in debt, your debt gets you in prison, and doing time expands your debt. It sure sounds like we’re living in a Charles Dickens reboot that ought to be canceled.

wheelchair symbol  The US House of Representatives voted to roll back antidiscrimination protections under the Americans with Disabilities Act, advancing a bill which would require that businesses be provided 60 days notice of accessibility violations and then be given 60 days to remedy the situation before a lawsuit can be filed. No other civil rights laws require similar waiting periods until they can be enforced in court.

 

farmer A Whatcom County blueberry farm treats workers so poorly that conditions amount to forced labor, a new lawsuit claims. There was a strike at the farm last year after a worker died when he wasn’t allowed to see a doctor, but the company describes their own operations as “exemplary.”

 

investigate The chief counsel of federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Seattle pled guilty to charges that he used department databases to steal the identities of immigrants, obtained almost two hundred thousand dollars through fraud, and even claimed three of his identify theft victims as dependents on his taxes. A colleague in the Seattle ICE office had previously been found guilty of forging evidence in deportation cases.

skull and crossbones Why? During an investigation of a major chemical company for illegally exposing workers to a harmful pesticide, the company was caught doing it again. They were facing a fine of nearly $5 million for their violations, but under new leadership at the EPA, the penalties have now been reduced to $150,000.

 

note Misleading minimum wage surcharges could soon be a thing of the past. We sent a formal request to the state Department of Labor & Industries asking them to make rules that would bar surcharges that pose as taxes or claim to go towards wages.

 

In the latest example of how expensive it is to be poor, Bank of America announced they are going to start charging $12/month for their most basic checking account. While the fee can be waived if you keep a $1,500 minimum balance, about half of Americans don’t have even $400 saved for an emergency. In a curious twist explained by The Atlantic, it turns out the move from free checking at all the big banks is partly happening because of pushback against the practice of assessing punitive fees for bouncing checks, as collecting those fees from people who with low account balances had been a multi-billion-dollar revenue stream for big banks. You can take that as example of one of those legendary “unintended consequences” of regulations… or you can get real and call it what it is: yet more evidence that trillion-dollar financial conglomerates will do whatever they we let them get away with.

 

 

homes More than a million homes in the United States are currently vacant. Three quarters of those vacant homes are owned by investors.

car State Farm insurance is eliminating 800 jobs in Tacoma, an unanticipated move which an industry spokesperson blamed on everything from chatbots to claims costs to self-driving cars. The company has a net worth of $87 billion

hourglass In an economic system where most jobs are bad, every extra hour of work can have a negative impact on our lives — and even our healthAs Peter Fleming explores in The Guardian, there’s a growing body of research showing that time spent at work has a health impact similar to smoking — and that if you work more than 39 hours a week, it could kill you. While dominant US culture relentlessly celebrates hard work, it turns out that most of us are productive for only about four hours a day, whiling away the rest of our time on the clock by pretending to be busy and worrying about what’s ahead. The science suggests there are two approaches here, both desperately necessary: first, to make work more rewarding & better compensated, and second, for all of us to do less of it.

BossFeed Briefing 2018