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Governance, Public Health, Social Justice

Search for new police chief surfaces questions about transparency and the public’s role

June 23, 2021
As the City of Bellingham, city council and the newly formed Racial Equity Commission seek to address systemic racism in and out of policing, some community members looking to engage in the selection process for a new police chief in good faith have raised questions about the city’s commitment to transparency.
Stella Harvey
Culture, Social Justice

Local Juneteenth event celebrates diversity, freedom, challenge

June 21, 2021
Black Lives Matter signs waved over the Maritime Heritage Park amphitheater and booths lined the concrete walkway on Saturday, June 19 — the fourth annual Juneteenth celebration in Bellingham.
Teya Heidenreich
photo: Teya Heidenreich © 2021
Commerce, Governance, Social Justice

Efficiency, diversity, integrity: how many port commissioners to best serve Whatcom County?

June 17, 2021
As Whatcom County voters prepare to assess candidates vying for two of three seats on the Port of Bellingham Board of Commissioners and four of seven county council positions, some are once again raising the question of whether the area would be better served by a larger port board.
Alex Meacham
photo: Amy Nelson © 2021
Culture, Governance, Public Health

As gun death rates rise in Whatcom, Skagit and San Juan counties, state refocuses to public health approach

June 11, 2021
With the number of gun deaths in Whatcom, Skagit and San Juan counties on the rise and outpacing statewide trends, policy and law makers are stressing public health-focused solutions that could be more effective in prevention than legal tactics.
Kenneth Duncan
Climate, Transportation

Electric buses to debut, marking trend in Whatcom County

June 10, 2021
Two new all-blue additions to Whatcom Transportation Authority’s fleet are its first electric buses — and part of a growing movement to replace fossil-fuel-powered vehicles with electric models to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that drive climate change.
Kimberly Cauvel
photo: Kimberly Cauvel © 2021
Culture, Education, Social Justice

In an age of social controversy, the show goes on

June 9, 2021
Theater producers, actors and audiences are bringing new perspectives to the question of what play content may be inappropriate, offensive or even harmful. Responses to a recent choice by Western Washington University’s theater department prompted a debate of those questions among the local theater community.
Matt Benoit
photo: © 2019
Culture, Editor’s Desk, Governance, Journalism, Social Justice

From the Editor’s Desk / One year old and changing life for the better

June 4, 2021
Nonprofit local news organization Salish Current is celebrating its one-year anniversary of incorporation on June 5, and continuing on its mission to fill gaps in covering vital news and provide a forum for civil discourse in Whatcom, San Juan and Skagit counties.
Amy Nelson
photo: Amy Nelson © 2021
Community Voices, Social Justice

Community Voices / A moment of pause. A time to grieve.

June 3, 2021
In a difficult week for Indigenous communities following discovery on May 28 of the remains of 215 Indigenous children near a residential school in Canada, memories of boarding and residential schools and the trauma that has impacted generations are resurfacing.
Terri Thayer
photo: Amy Nelson © 2021
Commerce, Education, Governance

Major funding, new policies aim to provide ‘basic necessity’ of broadband

May 28, 2021
State legislators approved a record $411 million in the capital budget this session to expand high-speed internet across the state, in particular in communities with limited or zero connectivity.
Jacqueline Allison
Climate, Culture, Governance, Natural Resources, Social Justice

House of Tears Carvers visit Bellingham with totem pole bound for DC

May 27, 2021
Several hundred people in Bellingham visited a totem pole created by Lummi carvers from a 400-year-old cedar log — the latest stop in the Red Road to D.C. tour of the Pacific Northwest and elsewhere across the U.S. toward its final destination in Washington, D.C.
Amy Nelson
photo: Amy Nelson © 2021
Climate, Governance, Natural Resources, Social Justice

‘Bold’ ideas around equity, environment proposed as San Juan reviews its county charter

May 21, 2021
San Juan County voters could be voting this fall to create a county climate and environment office and a justice and equity commission by amending the county’s 15-year-old home rule charter.
Heather Spaulding
photo: Amy Nelson © 2021
Commerce, Community Voices, Culture

Community Voices / Trouble in paradise: Lummi Islanders react to a national expose of its famous restaurant

May 20, 2021
A historic inn on Lummi Island made national news lately when a story focused world attention on problematic operations. Locally, the report stirred mixed reactions from island residents
Jean Godden
Governance, Public Health, Social Justice

Law and order, alternatives to jail: Bellingham compiles a wide-ranging priorities wish list for new police chief

May 13, 2021
As Bellingham’s search for a new police chief moves forward, the community has weighed in on what priorities should be under new leadership: some say law and order should top the list, others say it’s time to reimagine policing.
Stella Harvey
photo: Amy Nelson © 2020
Climate, Commerce, Community Voices, Natural Resources, Public Health

Community Voices / Local team launches innovative approach to help curb climate change

May 12, 2021
We must act, not just worry, and use as many solutions as possible to curb climate change as we can, say a team of professors, graduate fellows, student interns and sustainability professionals working on one solution for Whatcom County — that can be replicated anywhere.
Allison Roberts with reporting by Kiahna White-Alcain
Public Health

Who’s getting their shots? Whatcom develops a new strategy for COVID-19 vaccinations

May 12, 2021
Whatcom County health officials are now reporting COVID-19 vaccine rates in the county by school district, enabling a new, more strategic approach to making vaccine opportunities available to reach the largest number of people and those with access problems.
Alex Meacham
Governance, Natural Resources

Second phase of fish passage work underway on Padden Creek

May 7, 2021
When work is completed by the fall of 2022, coho, chum and chinook salmon will have access restored to 2.7 miles of Padden Creek from its mouth in Bellingham Bay near the ferry terminal.
Mike Sato and Alex Meacham
photo: Amy Nelson © 2021