With Seattle and King County cases on rise again, officials say not enough people isolating at first signs of illness


香蕉视频观看无限制版(Image: Washington State Department of Health’s latest statewide situation report)

Coronavirus cases are surging across the nation. In Seattle and King County, even as restrictions are loosened after months of “stay home” lockdown, officials say there is also an increase in people becoming sick and new challenges on “progress to zero” initiatives to stamp out spread of the virus.

Positive cases reported by Public Health are up around 50% compared to the start of June. Yes, testing has also surged with Seattle and King County residents seeking tests at rates of around 2,000 to 3,000 per day. The most recent positive rate — the percentage of those who turn up positive with the virus out of those who have been tested — has been coming in at over 6% this week, a step back to the state of things a month or more ago. In the ZIP codes, covering Capitol Hill and the Central District, the increase has so far been less severe — positive cases are up around 12% in an area of the city where people have been seeking tests at higher than typical rates.

“Recent cases are from all areas of the county, with the largest increase in new cases in young adults and Seattle residents,” the county bulletin on the increase reads. “At this point, no specific venue or risk factor has been identified as a cause of the increase.” Continue reading

Seattle Schools will add curriculum requirements for queer history and select a ‘LGBTQI+ hero’ to honor with school name change

(Image: Seattle Public Schools)

香蕉视频观看无限制版 president Zachary DeWolf points out a Seattle media oversight this Pride weekend.

As the COVID-19 restricted year has moved into summer break, Seattle Public Schools has committed to a slate of initiatives including ensuring at least one gender-neutral restroom in all school construction projects, opening up the district curriculum process to add LGBTQIA+ history and other underrepresented histories, and an effort to honor a to be determined “LGBTQI+ local or national hero” that might just be of interest to the community at Capitol Hill’s Stevens Elementary.

Here’s DeWolf on the resolution (PDF) passed by his board: Continue reading

Some occupiers make a stand, others prepare for exit from CHOP as city moves in to clear parts of Capitol Hill protest zone — UPDATE: ‘Sunday morning’

Protesters stand near large barriers as city crews wait to clear the streets — but not the campers — around the East Precinct (Image: CHS)

With reporting by Jake Goldstein-Street

The city’s process to begin the physical dismantling of CHOP began early Friday morning with a line of Seattle Department of Transportation trucks stretched down 12th Ave.

Like most moments around the Capitol Hill protest zone, things didn’t immediately go as planned. By 7:30 AM, things were on hold after the head of SDOT agreed to provide a “formal letter” to the camp explaining the day’s planned actions to clear art and barriers from the right of way and begin the the clean-up of Cal Anderson Park.

Like most moments around the Capitol Hill protest zone, it seemed clear the letter would be only a next step and the city trucks weren’t going anywhere.

UPDATE 6:15 PM: A marathon meeting between Mayor Jenny Durkan and camp organizers Friday afternoon inside 14th Ave’s First African Methodist Episcopal Church?produced a lengthy airing of grievances and debate over a Sunday morning deadline.

Nobody from the mayor’s office spoke to media after the more than three hour session but those who attended said the mayor was clear — the protest campers can stay outside the East Precinct and the large cement barriers that protect that camping area can stay but the other streets around the Capitol Hill protest zone must be clear of barriers by Sunday morning.

Whether there is agreement on that deadline is another matter.

Independent journalist Omari Salisbury hosted an impromptu press conference at 12th and Pine following the meeting after he said he had been asked to attend by the camp representatives meeting with the mayor. but that the mayor herself asked him to stop providing live updates of the proceedings.

Salisbury described the Sunday morning deadline and said that the mayor met most of the camp’s demands by either explaining how the city is already doing things like in-patrol car video, or detailing her initiatives that she felt would yield better results in a kind of “working on, better idea, met, or out of her hands” approach.

Salisbury said there was also a lot of discussion of increasing the amount of human services being offered to help homeless and undershletered people clear Cal Anderson. Salisbury said there was no formal agreement on the Sunday morning barrier deadline but that there was not active opposition from the camp representatives as the meeting was winding down.

Mark Anthony, a member of the CHOP camp who attended the session, said no decisions have been made about Sunday but that the camp is weighing its options. “I’ve already said the point of a movement it to remain moving,” Anthony said.

But Anthony said, for now the camp will “continue on.”

“The thing that we’re waiting for next is to find a solution that works for both the city and the protesters so we can continue at a new location.”

Anthony said the mayor won’t consider converting the East Precinct into a community center. Anthony’s proposal is to integrate the facility with a social services center.

As for concerns about another flare up of violence this weekend one week after last Saturday’s shootings, Anthony said much of Friday’s meeting was about safety and that there is hope for a better plan to create safe meeting spaces where camp volunteers can meet up with emergency responders and avoid potentially deadly delays.


SDOT director Sam Zimbabwe drew a crowd Friday morning (Image: CHS)

Workers said they were there to clear out things like wood barriers and store art for pickup. One handed out donuts while a protester blocked a backhoe parked in the middle of 12th Ave with a bored city worker at the wheel. Nobody, they said, was there to sweep out the campers.

A large crowd formed around SDOT director Sam Zimbabwe as he made his case in an orange SDOT vest and black COVID-19 mask for clearing the right of way and making the area more “normal” for businesses and residents. Continue reading

After nearly 50 years, Seattle Gay News needs your help to keep printing

Celebrate Pride and freedom of the press by helping a Seattle LGBTQ insitution stay in business.

The Seattle Gay News needs a boost after the passing of its longtime publisher George Bakan:

George saw the SGN through the worst of times during the AIDS crisis and through the best of times, including the fight for marriage equality and many other victories. We’re determined to preserve his legacy and to keep his vision going. But life, changes in the print industry, and especially COVID-19 have taken their toll on even one of the most resilient independent publications in the United States. Independent journalism is now more important than ever, and we need your help in getting our feet under us for this next adventure.

CHS wrote about Bakan’s death earlier this month here. He had been in charge of SGN since 1983.The paper has a nearly 50-year history in the city. Continue reading

‘Perpetual block party’ — Real estate companies and businesses sue City of Seattle over Capitol Hill protest zone

The City of Seattle is being threatened with a class action lawsuit brought by a collection of Capitol Hill real estate companies and developers, and a small group of 12th Ave businesses over Mayor Jenny Durkan and the Seattle Police Department’s response to the Capitol Hill protest zone, calling the situation “a perpetual block party.”

“This is not a step our clients have taken lightly,” lawyers at the firm Calfo Eakes write in a press release on the lawsuit filed Wednesday in federal court. “The rights of free speech and assembly are enshrined in our constitutional tradition, and our clients support protesters’ right to bring issues such as systemic racism and police brutality towards African Americans to the forefront of the national consciousness.”

The legal action comes as the size and scale of the protest zone has consolidated around 12th and Pine’s emptied East Precinct building after a weekend of deadly gun violence and a push from Durkan and SPD Chief Carmen Best to bring the occupied protest to an end “peacefully and in the near future” through community outreach and social services, not marching SPD officers into the zone in riot gear.

The firm says its clients “stand in solidarity with Black Lives Matter and the thousands upon thousands of people in Seattle who have peacefully protested” but “the City should not allow the right to peacefully protest and demand systemic change to manifest itself in acts of violence, harassment, and property damage, which has caused residents and small businesses to incur tremendous economic loss and instilled in them a fear to live and work in a neighborhood many moved to because of its history of activism, diversity, inclusion, and community-led investment.”

The class action lawsuit includes a complainant list made up of many of the Capitol Hill-focused and local developers and real estate investment companies that hold properties on the edges of the protest zone that has been the center of demonstrations and an occupied protest camp for weeks. Continue reading

Bill’s Off Broadway won’t reopen ending 40 years on Capitol Hill

It survived the redevelopment waves of Capitol Hill and a two year hiatus during construction but old school Capitol Hill hangout Bill’s Off Broadway could not survive the COVID-19 crisis. The popular pizza and drinking joint at the corner of Pine and Harvard announced it will not be joining other Capitol Hill restaurants in the ongoing Phase 2 recovery and said its closure will be permanent:

It is with heavy hearts we announce that after 40 years, Bill’s Off Broadway will be unable to reopen due to situations outside of our control.

2019 was Bill’s best year yet and we have you all to thank for going out on a high note. We are proud of what we created together and know that many of you found a safe place full of love and understanding within our doors. The friendships we made at Bill’s will last a lifetime.

We have loved being a piece of this vibrant community and are devastated to not be a part of it going forward. We appreciate all the support you have given Bill’s over the years.
Thank you for being part of our family.

In 2012, CHS spoke with longtime owner Don Stevens about impending development of the corner Bill’s had called home since 1980. The plan back then was to find a temporary location for Bill’s while its then 30-year Capitol Hill home was torn apart and built back up as part of a preservation incentive-boosted, mixed-use development. Continue reading

Signs of Capitol Hill (almost) normalcy: Farmers market returns to Broadway

The state’s rate of infection remains high enough to warrant a Washington-wide mask mandate and there is an active occupation protest only blocks away but neighbors can celebrate the return of a weekly staple Sunday as the Capitol Hill Farmers Market returns to Broadway.

But things won’t be totally back to normal.

“While we are psyched to return, the market will be quite different,” the Neighborhood Farmers Market Association writes. “There is a capacity cap and other shopper expectations and modifications.” Continue reading

Police investigating string of arson fires in Central District and South Seattle — UPDATE

The Seattle Police Department is investigating after a string of arson fires across the southern edges of the Central District and South Seattle Tuesday.

Seattle Fire tells CHS that it responded to multiple fires through the day and into the evening Wednesday and investigators have determined that at least six were intentionally set. CHS has mapped the fires where the Seattle Fire Marshal?was dispatched to investigate. SFD says more of the fires could turn out to be arsons. Continue reading

Capitol Hill protest zone shifts out of Cal Anderson Park with remaining core of campers surrounding East Precinct — UPDATE

UPDATE: Daytime scenes from the camp’s return to 12th and Pine

Uncertainty gave way to a multiplicity of plans Tuesday night as the Capitol Hill protest zone camp cleared parts of its Cal Anderson Park core.

Some carried their tents across the turf Bobby Morris field to strengthen and continue the occupation around the emptied East Precinct and carry on with Black Lives Matter goals and calls for defunding the Seattle Police Department.

Some rallied around a reported plan to move to a new camp below the Space Needle for renewed energy — and attention.

Others broke camp and left the scene. Continue reading

With reopening bringing COVID-19 case count worries, Washington will join Seattle and King County in making masks mandatory

Starting Friday, masks and face coverings will be required across the state as Washington officials look to slow the continued spread of the stubborn COVID-19 virus. The coverings have been required when “in indoor public spaces or confined spaces where it could be difficult to maintain six feet of physical distancing” in King County and Seattle since mid-May.

“We cannot let COVID-19 spread like it is right now in Washington,” Gov. Jay Inslee said Tuesday. “So today, we’re mandating facial coverings statewide.”

The order, which takes effect starting Friday, was made after officials reported “cases increasing” at the county level as the state reopens following months of COVID-19 restrictions.

“As necessary economic activity increases and more people are out in their communities, it is imperative that we adopt further measures to protect all of us,” Inslee said during a press conference Tuesday. “Until a vaccine or cure is developed, this is going to be one of our best defenses.”

Washington recorded more than 500 new cases Monday and eight new deaths. The state is now close to 30,000 cases and has reached 1,284 dead. Continue reading