Actions Previous 2024

Previous Actions from 2024


For the Week of February 12, 2024

???? Join us Sun Feb 18, 3-4:30 pm for our Indivisible Eastside IN PERSON Group Meeting at the Bellevue Library, 1111 110th Ave NE, Bellevue. Topics will include a discussion about six initiatives that will be on the November ballot, the work the Washington Youth Alliance is doing, a mid-session legislative update, and information about the March Presidential Primary. We’ll celebrate our 7th birthday with cake and take our anniversary photo!

???? Continue your learning throughout Black History Month by exploring the Washington State Historical Society’s Black Washington Digital Exhibit. Explore the lives of iconic individuals, including business owners, faith leaders, politicians, journalists, dramatists, and musicians. Find cultural spaces, historic sites, and locations integral to Washington State’s Black communities. Scroll down on the web page to access an app for Apple, Google, or Browser access.

???? King County’s Citizens’ Election Oversight Committee (CEOC) is in the process of recruiting two new members, including representatives from the disability and Vietnamese communities. If you or someone you know might be interested, you can learn more and download an application at the King County CEOC web page. Deadline is March 4, 2024.

Here are your 2 actions this week.

Action 1 – Advocate for Healthy Affordable Housing in Bellevue – by Feb 16

From Eastside for All

As part of the update to its Comprehensive Plan, Bellevue is considering allowing affordable housing to be sited close to freeways. To make sure that all housing is healthy housing, residential development should not be within 500 feet of freeways.

Bellevue is excluding residential uses from the list of “sensitive uses” despite housing being listed in definitions of sensitive uses in Bellevue’s own air quality report (for example, p. 36).

Please urge Bellevue to prioritize healthy affordable housing and prohibit residential building within 500 feet of freeways. This is a significant health equity issue.

Here are two places to share input before Feb. 16th:

Interactive map: Bellevue 2044 – Future Land Use Map | Engaging Bellevue

How to give input:

  • Click on the + sign on the left side of the map to display the blue Land Use Suggestion “pin” sign.
  • Click the pin and drag to somewhere next to a freeway and leave a comment for Bellevue to not build housing within 500 feet of the freeway to protect the health of residents and avoid exacerbating health disparities.

Land Use Questionnaire: Bellevue 2044 – Future Land Use | Engaging Bellevue

To give input, click “take the survey”, review the policy changes, then share the ones you agree with and describe what is missing.

Note: the first policy under Equitable Development is: New policy to promote the protection of day care, schools, hospitals, assisted living and other similar facilities by minimizing exposure to air pollution.

The policy change is good, yet it leaves out a major sensitive use – housing, and especially affordable housing. It also does not specifically identify freeways as a source of air pollution.

Action 2 – Help Tukwila church help Asylum Seekers

Asylum seekers first started arriving at Riverton Park United Methodist Church in Tukwila after a Seattle police officer asked the church’s pastor to house a migrant family at the church’s tiny house village for chronically homeless people in January 2023. Word spread, and the church’s asylum-seeker population eventually grew to around 500 people.

Read about the work the church is doing and some of the people receiving help:

and about the current efforts to secure funding:

Then, if you’re able, donate money, items or time to the Riverton Church.

Calendar of Events

Save the Date:

Recorded events to check out:

… and More:

Resources:

For the Week of February 5, 2024

???? Lunar New Year 2024 will fall on Saturday, Feb. 10, starting the year of the dragon. Lawmakers, including Representative My-Linh Thai of Bellevue, introduced House Bill 2209 to celebrate the state’s Asian-American Community and combat the recent rise of anti-Asian hate. The bill has passed the house and is currently in committee in the Senate.

???? Continue your learning throughout Black History Month with the foundational course, Slavery in America: Inconceivable Struggle and Profound Resistance among African Americans hosted by Common Power. Online – Tuesdays, February 6, 13, and 20.

???? 2024 is a critical year for organizing and elections. The democratic party needs Precinct Committee Officers (PCO’s) in every neighborhood on the Eastside. Learn about becoming a PCO at your LD websites: 1st LD, 5th LD, 41st LD, 45th LD, 48th LD

???? Join us Sun Feb 18, 3-4:30 pm for our Indivisible Eastside IN PERSON Group Meeting at the Bellevue Library, 1111 110th Ave NE, Bellevue. Topics will include a mid-session legislative update, a discussion about six initiatives that will be on the November ballot, and information about the March Presidential Primary. Or just come for the birthday cake as we celebrate our seven years of progressive work!

Here are your 2 actions this week.

Action 1 – Tell Congress no one should live below poverty

From IE member Oolaa and People Power United

Many people are not seen by members of our society because they are dependent on SSI. Also known as Supplemental Security Income, the program provides vital assistance to over 7.5 million elderly people and people with disabilities (including 1 million children).

The limits on assets for SSI beneficiaries are unfair to individuals and families alike. SSI recipients can only have a little of anything in cash, bank accounts, retirement accounts, whole life insurance policies, investments, and certain types of personal property to be eligible for the benefit, which keeps them stuck in poverty. This often prevents family members from seeking promotions, accepting new jobs, or saving money for fear that their loved one will lose their benefits.

It also keeps people with disabilities from getting married because of the punitive SSI rules that disqualify married people if their combined savings exceed $3,000. SSI benefits are so minimal that recipients are below the federal poverty line.

In September of 2023, Senators Brown (D-OH) and Cassidy (R-LA) and Representatives Fitzpatrick (R-PA) and Higgins (D-NY) introduced the bipartisan SSI Savings Penalty Elimination Act (see the press release here). The bill would increase the asset limit from $2,000 to $10,000 for an individual and $3,000 to $20,000 for a couple. Additionally, it would exclude retirement savings from the countable assets.

Here’s a short video about the problems with current SSI benefit restrictions.

Express your support for this bill by using this easy action tool from People Power United. Tell your Senators that no one should live below the poverty line.

Action 2 – Let’s get better representation on the Evergreen Hospital District Board of Commissioners!

From Jessica Forsythe

EvergreenHealth Hospital in Kirkland lies within King County Public Hospital District No. 2, and as such is governed by a board of publicly-elected commissioners, similar to a school board. EvergreenHealth Hospital Board of Commissioners has an open call for nominees for consideration for their vacant at-large seat (Position 5). Before the seat became vacant, Amber Wise ran an awesome campaign this past fall for Position 6, and unfortunately did not win. Then, in December 2023, Position 5 was vacated, so she submitted for consideration of that position. Amber HAS NOT been selected by the Board for an interview. In last fall’s campaign, Amber was widely endorsed by King County Democrats, LDs, an impressive number of Unions and Electeds, and earned an impressive 40% of the vote!

Here’s how you can help!

If you are a registered King County voter, first check to see if you reside within the overall district boundaries (roughly, Kirkland, Redmond, Bothell, and points east). To do this, click King County Public Hospital District boundaries, select “Public Hospital District #2” at the left and ensure all other items are DESELECTED, click the magnifying glass at the right, type the address, press Enter, then zoom out to view the district boundaries. If you reside with the boundaries, you may submit nominations by completing the Commissioner Nominee form and submitting it by February 14, 2024.

Learn more about the Board and who was selected for an interview here: https://www.evergreenhealth.com/about-us/governance-and-leadership/board-of-commissioners/public-notice-of-board-nominees/

For the SECOND page of the form, here’s Amber’s pertinent info:

Amber Christina Wise

PO Box 2372

Woodinville, WA 98072

amberwise4kc@gmail.com

717-805-5271

YES, she lives in King County

YES, she lives in District #2 boundaries

No, she is not employed by King County Public Health District #2

Sample statement for nomination (or feel free to write your own):

Amber Wise ran for Evergreen Hospital Board of Commissioners in 2023 with an impressive amount of support from the community. She would be an incredible addition to the Board and serve with thoughtfulness and dignity. Amber is smart, competent, and ready to work hard for the community. Please do not delay! Add Amber Wise to the list of candidates being considered for the vacant at-large seat.

Calendar of Events

Save the Date:

Recorded events to check out:

… and More:

Resources:


For the Week of Jan 29, 2024

????February 1st is the start of Black History Month and the theme for this year is “African Americans and the Arts”. In celebration of Black History Month, the City of Bellevue, in partnership with Seattle architecture firm MG2 and Onyx Fine Arts Collective, is presenting the exhibit “Elevating Voices,” featuring the work of 17 Pacific Northwest Black artists. The exhibit will be on display throughout February, and the community is invited to an opening reception on Thursday, Feb. 1, 6-8 p.m., at Bellevue City Hall, 450 110th Ave. NE. Registration is requested for the reception.

???? We need your advocacy on state legislation! The first cutoff date for bills to survive is this Wednesday, January 31st. If you’re already signed up for TAN but haven’t used it yet this year, take these three steps to make sure you’re receiving TAN emails, and you can keep track of your actions. Step 1, Step 2, then go to TAN and take some quick sign-in actions! New users register HERE.

???? King County Council Member Sarah Perry is looking for an experienced Legislative Aide for her District 3 team! Apply here or email libby.hollingshead@kingcounty.gov with questions. The deadline to submit an application is Friday, February 2nd at 11:59 PM.

Here are your 2 actions this week.

✊ Action 1 – VOTE now for King Conservation District and Renton measure if applicable

Last week we told you about the King Conservation District election for Seat #1 on the KCD Board of Supervisors. The election will primarily rely on electronic ballot access. To request a physical ballot or get assistance with voting, please contact elections@kingcd.org or call 425-282-1900. King County Elections will tabulate (print & scan) all ballots and report all results. You can access your ballot online now until February 13th at this link. You can read statements from all three candidates at this link. King County Democrats endorsed Brittney Bush Bollay last week.

If you are a voter in Renton, there is a very important initiative on the ballot to raise the minimum wage. Your ballot should arrive by today. In 2015, the city of SeaTac landed a historic win as it became the first city in the United States to adopt a $15 minimum wage law. That same year, Seattle followed suit and enacted its own minimum wage increase. In 2022, the city of Tukwila passed a minimum wage ordinance mandating a $19 minimum wage, receiving widespread support with over 80% of the vote. And just this year, King County Councilmembers are proposing a near-identical $19 minimum wage ordinance for all of Unincorporated King County. Please see Raise the Wage Renton’s website for more information on the initiative.

✊ Action 2 – Volunteer with WAISN’s Rapid Response Teams

From Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network

Since the Washington Immigrant Solidarity Network was formed in 2016, one of their biggest priorities has been fortifying their deportation defense mechanisms. An essential tool in protecting immigrant neighbors and family members has been the creation of Rapid Response Teams across the state. These teams are composed of community members who have stepped up to receive training to respond to ICE reports, verify and document ICE activity, and ensure that community members know our rights.

They are offering two opportunities to receive the training needed to be a Rapid Responder. These training sessions are virtual and held over Zoom, which means you can join from home.

If you are already a part of an existing team, you can join for a refresher. For new folks, after you are trained, you will be connected to one of 22 teams across the state. If you are the first in your area to receive training, they will make sure to provide you guidance and the support needed to start a new team!

Volunteers are needed now more than ever: WAISN’s Deportation Defense Hotline is seeing an uptick in calls reporting detentions, arrests at the US/Canadian border are increasing, and in just the last month they have received reports of violations of the Keep Washington Working Act, the state law preventing local law enforcement from collaborating with federal immigration authorities for the purposes of enforcing immigration law.

Join the 700+ community members and 22 Rapid response teams who have been trained in a mutual aid effort to disrupt, hold accountable, and ultimately abolish the exploitative detention and deportation system. Register for one of these sessions:

Thur Feb 1, 5-7:30 pm

Thur Feb 8, 5-7:30 pm

Calendar of Events

Save the Date:

Recorded events to check out:

… and More:

Resources:


For the Week of Jan 22, 2024

???? The Seattle -King County free health clinic at Seattle Center is looking for volunteers for the weekend of Feb. 15 -18. Besides health professionals they need interpreters and support staff. There is full information and a signup at the link.

???? If you live in Bellevue there are several opportunities to engage with the city:

  • It’s your last chance to fill out the City of Bellevue’s Budget Survey, a biennial questionnaire that helps the city develop the 2025-26 budget. The online survey is open through Jan. 22 for all who live, work, and/or play in Bellevue, with questions available in multiple languages.
  • The Bellevue School District seeks to fill a School Board Director vacancy for Director District 3 due to Director Joyce Shui’s resignation. Nominations must be received by Jan 26.
  • Comment on proposed developments in the BelRed area by filling out the policy questionnaires on Engaging Bellevue. Questionnaires will be open until Feb 16.

???? Keep up to date with events in your city council by signing up for email updates. You can sign up at these links for Bellevue, Kirkland, and Redmond. If you hear of events in your city that you’d like Indivisible Eastside to promote, please let us know by emailing indivisibleeastside@gmail.com.

This would also be a great time to fill out surveys from our elected representatives and sign up for their newsletters to keep up with what is happening. Congressional Representatives Suzan DelBene, Kim Schrier, and Adam Smith would all love to hear from you. King County Councilmember Claudia Balducci (District 6) also has a new survey out.

Here are your 2 actions this week.

Action 1 – Share your concerns about Medicare Advantage with our Senators

From Indivisible and member Linda K.

More than 62 million people across the country rely on Medicare for their health care, and nearly half of those recipients are enrolled in Medicare Advantage, an alternative to traditional Medicare coverage for seniors through private health insurance companies. Funds from the traditional Medicare trust are used to pay the health insurance companies offering Medicare Advantage plans — and because these companies are private, their focus is ultimately on their bottom line.

Over time, Medicare Advantage companies have committed widespread fraud, put patients’ care and lives in peril by denying their claims, and threatened the solvency of Medicare. Local organization Puget Sound Advocates for Retirement Action (PSARA) are a great resource for information to learn about this and on how to protect Medicare.

Recently an industry-friendly Medicare Advantage letter was launched in the Senate, circulated by Sens. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Tim Scott (R-SC), Gary Peters (D-MI), and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV). This letter praises the program and asks for “stability,” which really means no changes that might protect seniors and people with disabilities. The letter is opposed by organizations such as Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP), who are asking the public to contact their Senators to ask them not to sign on to this letter and have provided a script to contact them. The deadline for signing this letter is Jan. 24 so please contact them today!

☎ Sample Script:

Hello, my name is [NAME] and I’m a constituent from [CITY] WA. I’m reaching out about the Medicare Advantage program. Currently, there is a letter circulating in the Senate led by Senators Cortez Masto, Scott, Peters, and Capito praising the program and asking for “stability,” which really means no changes that might protect seniors and people with disabilities.

I’m calling to urge the Senator to NOT sign on to this letter.

The Medicare Advantage program has a record of harming patients by delaying and denying care, and by restricting our choice of doctor. Insurance corporations have also been caught overcharging taxpayers by up to 140 billion dollars per year. Rather than uncritically promoting Medicare Advantage, we need Congress to reappraise the program and hold health insurers accountable for their plans’ shortcomings.

Thank you.

[NAME]

[IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address to ensure your call is tallied.]

Action 2 – Learn about the candidates and vote in the King Conservation District Election

King Conservation District is a nonregulatory, special purpose district with a mission to promote the sustainable use of natural resources through voluntary stewardship in King County. They provide technical assistance to private residents in forest management, farm conservation planning, wildfire preparedness, and streamside and shoreline enhancement. They also work with cities and other organizations to support community gardens, urban forest canopy, and local food systems.

King Conservation District is holding an election for Seat #1 on the KCD Board of Supervisors. Voting begins January 23 and ends February 13. The election will primarily rely on electronic ballot access with alternate options for requesting physical ballots. King County Elections will tabulate all ballots and report all results. You can access your ballot online, starting Jan 23 at 8 am, at this link. You can read statements from all three candidates at this link.

Because of the unusual arrangements for voting in KCD elections, turnout is typically extremely low. They are committed to pursuing election reform with the State Legislature and making future elections more accessible to all voters by holding the election via the normal ballot in the fall. Please vote to support the great work that they do and support efforts to move voting to the regular ballot.

✊ Bonus Action – Don’t forget to sign up for TAN!

Please use this link and review the slides that give an overview of the new, improved 2024 version of Take Action Network (TAN). Videos will be updated soon.

If you’re already signed up for TAN but haven’t used it yet this year, take these three steps to make sure you’re receiving TAN emails, and you can keep track of your actions. Step 1, Step 2, then go to TAN and take some quick sign-in actions!

Calendar of Events

Save the Date:

Recorded events to check out:

… and More:

Resources:


For the Week of Jan 15, 2024

???? On this day when we celebrate the life of Dr Martin Luther King Jr, the values he stood for — acceptance, equality, non-violent protest — are under threat. In a year when it is going to be harder than ever to sustain the progress that has been made, let us all recommit to the work that he inspired.

???? Thank you to those of you who joined us at our Group Meeting yesterday afternoon to learn about priority bills that WILA (Washington Indivisible Legislative Action) is tracking this session. Thanks also to Jim A, Sarah R, and Ruth L, as well as IE Steering members Hanna and Kat for sharing their expertise in different areas.

If you were not able to join us you can view the Notes from the meeting here.

???? The new session in Olympia started off with a bang last week, with over 950 bills being introduced so far. If you are not yet signed up for TAN and want a quick and easy way to make your voice heard with your state representatives on issues that are important to you, you can sign up at this link and review the slides that give an overview of the new, improved 2024 version of TAN (videos will be updated soon). You can also sign up for training provided by our friends at Indivisible Bellingham here. New dates have been added!

If you’re already signed up for TAN – terrific! Take these three steps to make sure you’re receiving TAN emails, and you can keep track of your actions. Step 1, Step 2, then go to TAN and take some quick sign-in actions!

Here are your 2 actions this week.

Action 1 – Ask our Senators to support a Resolution to address civilian harm in Gaza

From huffpost.com

As the humanitarian situation in Gaza becomes more desperate there is an increasing need for meaningful debate in Congress on U.S. support for Israeli operations, including the extent to which U.S. military aid may be supporting violations of international human rights and humanitarian law in both Gaza and the West Bank. Israel is currently targeting areas where Palestinians fled for safety while experts are ratcheting up warnings of famine among Gazans.

Members of Congress overwhelmingly support Israel’s intention to punish the Gaza-based militant group Hamas and its partners for a brutal surprise Oct. 7 attack that killed 1,200 Israelis and led to more than 200 being taken hostage. But Israel’s conduct of the war since then has horrified many legislators and led to public calls for a change in policy from a significant number of Democrats.

Senator Bernie Sanders has introduced Senate Resolution 504, which would require the Biden administration to produce a report on Israel’s human rights practices and a vote has been scheduled for Tues Jan 16. Sanders’ bill is privileged, meaning Senate leadership has to allow it to be considered, opening up a rare chance for senators to extensively debate Israel’s Gaza campaign. Upon Senate passage, this resolution would require a report from the State Department on Israel’s human rights practices within thirty days and provide transparency into their utilization of US-funded equipment.

On Jan 11 a coalition of more than 70 national organizations, including Indivisible, sent a letter to members of Congress urging them to cosponsor and vote in favor of Sen. Bernie Sanders’ resolution. Please contact our Washington Senators and urge them to support this resolution.

☎ Sample Script:

Hello, my name is [NAME] and I am a constituent from [CITY], WA. I am writing to urge you to support Senate Resolution 504, which will be heard on January 16. This Resolution, which requires a State Department report on Israel’s human rights practices and US military aid to Israel, is an important step to ensure that US military aid is used in accordance with international law. There is no doubt that many of the actions that we have seen taken by the Israeli defense forces fail to meet these requirements. As the situation deteriorates daily, there is increasing urgency for Congress to address this.

Thank you.

[NAME]

[IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address to ensure your call is tallied]

✊ Action 2- Commit to fighting the regressive Initiatives that are heading for our November ballots

As you probably know, a series of six initiatives were filed recently with the Secretary of State’s office which aim to roll back progress made in recent years in areas such as Climate, Education, Criminal Justice, Healthcare, and Taxes. These initiatives have been made possible by funding from a wealthy Eastside businessman and sponsorship by state Rep. Jim Walsh, R-Aberdeen, who is also chairman of the Washington State Republican Party. (For another review of the initiatives you can read this Stranger article.)

Signatures have been turned in and are being reviewed, a process which will probably take several more weeks. Secretary of State Steve Hobbs has informed the legislature that all six initiatives are likely to be on the ballot. One has already been certified.

If these initiatives appear on the ballot, as seems likely, we can expect an equally well funded and organized campaign to get them passed by those who wish to take our state backwards. We have to commit to put up a strong fight statewide so that the progress that has been made is not undone. There are plans being made by many ally organizations for a coalition to fight these initiatives and we expect to have more information soon.

One organization that has already begun a campaign to fight these initiatives is called Stop Greed. You can sign up for their mailing list via their website or follow them on Facebook for updates. We will keep you informed as we learn more about more groups.

Calendar of Events

Save the Date:

Recorded events to check out:

… and More:

Resources:


For the Week of Jan 8, 2024

???? As we pass the 3rd anniversary of Trump’s January 6th insurrection, use this gift link to read a motivational opinion piece – Make a New Year’s Resolution to Fight Trump. Writer Michelle Goldberg describes the dangers of this moment (dwindling donations, third party spoiler candidates), but also includes specifics about how to re-energize, including working for abortion protections in Arizona and Florida, donating to voter turnout organizations, and elevating down-ballot candidates to motivate voter turnout. “The first Trump presidency seemed like a grotesque accident, a civic disaster that befell us because we were too blithely arrogant to see it coming. Trump redux, however, is something we’re lurching toward with eyes wide open. If he wins again, it won’t be a shock, and no one will be able to claim, as so many did before, that this is not who we are.”

???? We look forward to seeing you at our next Indivisible Eastside Group meeting January 14th from 3-4:30 pm on Zoom. If you’ve previously registered, a zoom link will be emailed to you the day before. If you haven’t, please register HERE.

Here are your 2 actions this week.

Action 1 – Get ready for 2024: Sign up, refamiliarize yourself or get assistance with TAN to take part in Washington Indivisible Legislative Action

The next 60 days are perhaps the most important opportunities to make your voice heard with our state elected representatives. The WA legislature begins January 8th and goes for 60 days.

Your electeds want to hear from you, how you feel about the issues, and why. Washington Indivisible Legislative Action team uses Take Action Network to make it easy for you to have your voice heard on important topics like police reform; reproductive rights; voter registration; firearms purchases/transfers; diversity, equity, and inclusion in school curricula; fair wages; environmental policy; privacy; housing & homelessness, and lots more.

In under 5 minutes a day you can support/oppose bills, and send pre-written emails to your senator and representatives. The easiest way for YOU to do that is by signing up for Take Action Network.

If you’re already signed up for TAN – terrific! Take these three steps to make sure you’re receiving TAN emails, and you can keep track of your actions. Step 1, Step 2, then go to TAN and take some quick sign-in actions!

If TAN is new to you, or you want some help – Indivisible Bellingham is offering 45-minute online Zoom training sessions in the coming weeks.

Prior to the meeting please sign in to your TAN account, or complete the TAN Signup Process.

✊ Action 2 – Save the “Carrot” and “Cabbage Patch” forests in Thurston County

From the Center for Responsible Forestry

The “Carrot” and “Cabbage Patch” timber sales within Capitol Forest in Thurston County are under threat of being auctioned off to the highest bidder by the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) for clearcut logging. These forests are vital for wildlife habitat, water quality, climate resilience, and biodiversity. We must act now to protect them. Ten months ago, the Thurston Board of County Commissioners wrote a powerful letter asking DNR to pause the “Juneau” timber sale (in the same area) and to stop logging mature forests in Thurston County. DNR should honor this request and stop the “Carrot” and “Cabbage Patch” sales as well.

Take 1 minute to send a pre-written email to members of the Board of Natural Resources, urging them to save these forests from clearcut logging.

Calendar of Events

Save the Date:

Recorded events to check out:

… and More:

Resources:


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