In 2013, a Spokane initiative to the people was filed that would have allowed voters to approve four demands:
- That neighborhoods have power over local developments,
- That the Spokane River and aquifers be protected,
- That workers not lose their Federally enumerated rights once they enter the workplace, and
- That corporations no longer be considered “persons” in Spokane.
The measure qualified to go on the ballot; however, a cabal of corporations and corporate front people used the courts to block the people’s vote.
Now, after that block was overturned in January of this year and the cabal again appealed, the matter goes to the Supreme Court. This will be the final word on whether a Community Rights Ordinance has the same right as all other ordinances to proceed to the people once it receives its quota of signature.
All such Ordinances contain an element of civil disobedience, but they are in the people’s interest and we say the corporate interests which would lose out should not have the right to block them.
Kai Huschke will also be coming to Olympia. He’s our contact in the Community Rights movement and a leader of the Spokane Community Rights initiative.
We can follow what happens
On November 9, there will be a pre-hearing orientation from 6 to 8 pm at the MIXX 96 Meeting Room (near State and Washington in downtown Olympia). Kai will give us an overview of the case and its issues, as well as what’s happening in the movement across the country and in Spokane.
On November 10, the hearing will take place from 9 to 11 am in the Temple of Justice.
After the hearing, we can meet for a post-mortem from 11:30 to 1:00 in the Columbia Room of the Legislative Building. This would be to analyze the hearing and to talk about the road ahead for Washington regarding community rights and the right of local community self-government. (That room is next to the Cafeteria; we can bring food over if we want.)
All are welcome to the hearing and the community meetings.
For addition information, go to the Envison Spokane website:
Janet Jordan is an active member of the Green Party of South Puget Sound.