Thursday, Seattle City Council voted to end the hiring freeze and increase the number of police in 2021. This is a violation of their promises and our trust.
Take 2 minutes today to click here and demand City Council listen to the community, and stand by their promises to Defund SPD, and freeze the hiring of more cops. With your action, we have the opportunity to change the final vote on Monday November 23, and reduce the size of SPD next year.
On August 6, Council President Lorena Gonzalez wrote,
- We are going to cut “gun and badge” positions. It’s no secret that 82% of SPD’s budget is personnel. There is no way to right size the SPD budget without this step.
- On November 19, Council President Gonzalez complained that a hiring freeze would shrink the Seattle Police Department too quickly.
- By signing onto a stretch goal, Council began a partnership with community that has brought us to the place we are now, a unified Council position on the 2020 SPD budget and a pathway AND A PLAN for how to leverage the decisions we are making now to reduce the size of the police Department in 2021.
- On November 19, she voted to increase the size of the Seattle Police Department in 2021.
- I’m committed to defunding the police & using most of that money to invest back into communities we’ve failed—creating anti-racist, low barrier housing, equitable transit, permanent supportive housing, housing options for survivors of violence and more. How many people have to call for the police to be defunded before the Mayor embraces radical change? The problem is–the weapons aren’t illegal, the tactics aren’t illegal, the riot gear isn’t illegal. We have allowed them, we have funded them, and that is why WE need to change. So we cannot wait. We’re going to take bold action now-rooted in community of color demands and Black-led organizations, we will follow their directive to reinvest in the health and stability of residents and changes to material conditions in our city. Seattle: If you watched babies being separated from their parents at the border and were thankful that we were in “progressive Seattle”… if you wept at deportation hearings for children—this is your moment. It’s time for all of us to step outside our comfort zone. It’s time for us to take our cues from Black-led organizations who’ve been calling for years—decades—for this change.
- On November 19, CM Mosqueda decided to stay within her comfort zone and vote against Black-led community demands.
On July 9, Councilmember Andrew Lewis wrote,
- I am 100% in favor of the @DecrimSeattle demands, including the goal of a 50% cut of SPD’s budget. I am committed to reinvesting that money in BIPOC led organizations
- On November 19, he voted to increase funding for as many as 100 SPD cops in 2021.
On June 3, Councilmember Dan Strauss wrote,
- WHITE SILENCE IS VIOLENCE. I will use my voice and my power to make lasting change – NOW.
- And on July 13 he stated
- It’s a false narrative to say that scaling up community-based programs will not and cannot work because they are not ready to step in today.
- On November 19, Councilmember Strauss voted to scale up the police rather than community-based programs.
On August 14, Councilmember Alex Pedersen wrote,
- SPD has a budget deficit. SPD has already spent their entire overtime budget. Some reductions from SPD are simply necessary both this year and next year.
- On November 19, Councilmember Pedersen voted to increase the number one expense in SPD’s budget: sworn officers.
Debra Juarez continues to oppose the goals of Decriminalize Seattle and King County Equity Now.
To summarize: we need your urgent action today. Click here today to demand City Council listen to the community, and stand by their promises to us, and freeze the hiring of more cops.
The Resign Durkan Organizing Committee
To contact us, send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.P.S.
- Please forward this email to your Seattle neighbors and friends, and also ask them to sign the letter asking Mayor Durkan to resign or be removed: https://www.resigndurkan.com/sign
- If you haven’t already, please sign the Decriminalize Seattle campaign to Defund the Seattle Police: https://decriminalizeseattle.com/.
Here’s what we recommend you send:
I am a resident of Seattle in District <YOUR_DISTRICT>. I am writing to demand you listen to the community and reduce the size of the Seattle Police Department. On Monday, November 23, you must institute a hiring freeze of Seattle Police in 2021, cutting the full $9 million from the SPD budget.
Each of you promised to Defund SPD and reduce the number of officers. You’ve said we must take action now. Only Councilmembers Morales and Sawant delivered on that promise on November 19.
As a reminder, here’s what each of you said:
- CM Gonzalez, August 8: “We are going to cut “gun and badge” positions”
- CM Herbold, August 7: “leverage the decisions we are making now to reduce the size of the police Department in 2021”
- CM Mosequeda, June 8: “How many people have to call for the police to be defunded before the Mayor embraces radical change? So we cannot wait. We’re going to take bold action now”
- CM Lewis, July 9: “I am 100% in favor of a 50% cut of SPD’s budget.”
- CM Strauss, June 3, “It’s a false narrative to say that scaling up community-based programs will not and cannot work because they are not ready to step in today.”
- CM Pedersen, August 14: “Some reductions from SPD are simply necessary both this year and next year.”
I agree with Councilmember Mosqueda that we need BOLD action. We need to “step outside our comfort zone.”
We’re counting on you to reaffirm your commitment to reduce the Seattle Police Force by voting on November 23 for a hiring freeze in the final 2021 budget.