Doing the work of the people: Nooksack adjudication, Billy Frank, Jr., statue and a wrap-up of 40th and 42nd legislator success
How did bills introduced by 40th and 42nd District legislators fare in the session ending on April 25? See an update on the full list: planning for zero-emissions transportation, standardizing definitions around homelessness to help improve services, and more.
Caught in a web of causes: homelessness hits harder than ever
The growing presence of unhoused individuals and their expanding footprint into residential neighborhoods has shocked and bewildered others in the community, while the urgency of the problem threatens to distract from understanding the underlying realities perpetuating this crisis.
Books under scrutiny: censorship and cancel culture in a changing society
In a time of massive reevaluation of once widely accepted tropes, celebrities have been called out for past insensitivities and much worse, schools renamed and statues toppled. But what does it mean when books are brought into the discussion?
Community Voices / Clyde Ford on speaking up and raising eyebrows
Change happens when you speak up, and speak out. Drawing the attention of politicians and ordinary citizens to the need for change often helps bring it about … to shine light on the work that remains to be done in this great state, particularly with regard to racial equity and social justice.
Community Voices / Powerful stories bring understanding, in celebration of Black History Month
The study and knowledge of Black history bring understanding to race and racism in the United States.
Local MLK Day events set the stage for new year of racial justice action
A combination of potent social and political turmoil made many people eager to close the book on 2020 and emerge into a fresh year.
Economy, environment, social justice, COVID recovery, housing: legislators anticipate the 2021 session
Salish Current asked 40th and 42nd District legislators a few questions about how they see the legislative session that convenes on Monday, Jan. 11; their answers follow.
Bellingham police budget tweaked for near future; equity advocates continue push for more
In Bellingham, some local racial justice advocacy groups transitioned their demands from over the summer to budget season, looking for tangible proof that their representatives heard their calls for change over the last six months.
Local law enforcement complaint procedures under scrutiny amid new calls for accountability
Local Black Lives Matter protests are calling for reduction of police budgets and re-examination of how police are held accountable to the communities they are sworn to serve.
‘Defund the police’ movement drives Whatcom racial justice discussions
Local activists are advocating for a 50% reduction in the Bellingham Police Department budget, even as BPD says it could use more resources for meeting the calls it routinely answers now — including a large number related to behavioral health and social welfare. While reformers would like to see change soon, community-wide conversations are just beginning, and the eventual direction and pace of change are as yet unknown.
Solidarity rally, Cornwall landfill, Cherry Point occupy local officials during the week ending June 12
City officials praised organizers and participants of Bellingham’s Peaceful Solidarity Rally on June 6 at Maritime Heritage Park, in one of several local government meetings last week.
Justice delayed by COVID creates hardships, weakens protections
From local courts to federal ones, stay-at-home orders and social distancing guidelines have had a significant effect on the wheels of justice across the United States.
San Juan, Skagit and Whatcom nonprofits refocus to meet basic needs, uncertain future
For the 375,000 people living in San Juan, Skagit and Whatcom counties, community foundations and other nonprofits are adapting to provide the most essential services to people affected by COVID-19 and unemployment. Throughout the region, many organizations are seeing dramatic increases in demand. People need help ranging from mortgage and rent relief to mental health support to deliveries of food and medicine.
Whatcom Museum opens heritage exhibits to indigenous people; part of ‘bigger conversation’
New exhibits and a new perspective on access at the Whatcom Museum of History and Art have become threads in a national conversation about the relationship between museums and indigenous people.