Melissa Hellmann

Carmen Best was confirmed as the Seattle Police Chief on Aug. 13. Photo courtesy of the Seattle Police Department.

There’s a New Police Chief In Town

Seattle City Council Confirms Carmen Best as the Chief of the Seattle Police Department

 

Developmental Disabilities Administration employees take a break during the workday to advocate for higher pay and affordable health insurance on August 9, 2018. Photo by Melissa Hellmann

State Employees Can’t Afford Seattle

As the cost of living booms, case managers in contract negotiations cite low wages for high turnover rates.

 

Garfield High School. Photo by Joe Wolf/Flickr

Seattle Public Schools and Teachers’ Unions Spar Over Alleged Deficits

SPS says the McCleary Supreme Court ruling will cost them money, while teachers argue it should increase funding.

 

Velma Veloria, Sutapa Basu, and Emma Catague (left to right) have worked to spread labor trafficking awareness over the past two decades. Photo by Melissa Hellmann

Advocates Seek to Eradicate Labor Trafficking in Washington

Meet the three local woman who are bringing the issue to the forefront.

Velma Veloria, Sutapa Basu, and Emma Catague (left to right) have worked to spread labor trafficking awareness over the past two decades. Photo by Melissa Hellmann
Defense Distributed’s 3D printed gun, The Liberator. Photo by Vvzvlad/Wikimedia Commons

Washington Leads Legal Challenge Banning Access to 3D Printed Guns

The AG’s office plans to file a lawsuit blocking a website from disseminating digital firearm files.

Defense Distributed’s 3D printed gun, The Liberator. Photo by Vvzvlad/Wikimedia Commons
Protestors gather at SeaTac’s Families Belong Together rally. Photo by Alex Garland

Future Remains Uncertain for Separated Immigrant Children as the Federal Reunification Deadline Passes

There are still known five youths who remain in federally-funded Seattle-area shelters.

Protestors gather at SeaTac’s Families Belong Together rally. Photo by Alex Garland

Can the Showbox Be Saved?

Seattleites express outrage over the potential loss of the music venue and look to preserve it via historic landmark status.

Green Lake wading pool. Photo courtesy Seattle Parks/Flickr

How to Beat Seattle’s Summer Heat

With increased temperatures, the City has options to stay cool.

Green Lake wading pool. Photo courtesy Seattle Parks/Flickr
Katrina Johnson, Charleena Lyles’ cousin, speaks at a press conference for De-Escalate Washington’s I-940 on July 6, 2017. Photo by Sara Bernard

Communities of Color Respond to Police Chief Best’s Nomination

Although its a mixed bag for some, the families affected by police shootings say she’s the best one for the job.

Katrina Johnson, Charleena Lyles’ cousin, speaks at a press conference for De-Escalate Washington’s I-940 on July 6, 2017. Photo by Sara Bernard
Protestors gather at SeaTac’s Families Belong Together rally. Photo by Alex Garland

Seattle’s Separated Children

A local non-profit houses several immigrant youths who were separated from their parents at the border. But for how long?

Protestors gather at SeaTac’s Families Belong Together rally. Photo by Alex Garland
Between Seattle’s $15 minimum wage and the new no-poach cause agreement, Washington has been leading the nation in advancing fast food workers’ rights. Photo by Fibonacci Blue/Flickr

Washington AG’s Deal Grants Mobility to Fast Food Workers Nationwide

Seven fast food chains have agreed to end no-poaching policies that economists say cause wage stagnation.

Between Seattle’s $15 minimum wage and the new no-poach cause agreement, Washington has been leading the nation in advancing fast food workers’ rights. Photo by Fibonacci Blue/Flickr
Dianne Laurine (left) and Shaun Bickley (right), Commissioners for the Seattle Commission for People with Disabilities, say that the city didn’t consult with the disabled community prior to passing the straw ban. [Image description: Laurine is wearing a purple turtleneck and facing Bickley, who has blue hair and is wearing a striped blue shirt. They are sitting at a table at Queen Anne’s Uptown Espresso.] Photo by Melissa Hellmann

Straw Ban Leaves Disabled Community Feeling High and Dry

Although the city says that disabled people are exempted from the ban, the impacted community says that businesses haven’t gotten the message loud and clear.

Dianne Laurine (left) and Shaun Bickley (right), Commissioners for the Seattle Commission for People with Disabilities, say that the city didn’t consult with the disabled community prior to passing the straw ban. [Image description: Laurine is wearing a purple turtleneck and facing Bickley, who has blue hair and is wearing a striped blue shirt. They are sitting at a table at Queen Anne’s Uptown Espresso.] Photo by Melissa Hellmann

Washington Residents Seek Greater Governmental Transparency

Lawsuits and a national campaign show that Washingtonians are dissatisfied with the status quo.

The Deferred Dreams of Working Women on H-4 Visas

Thousands of Indian women throughout the country could once again be barred from employment.

The Supreme Court of the United States. Photo by Matt Wade/Flickr

How Will the Supreme Court’s Janus vs. AFSCME Ruling Impact Washington’s Unions?

The case decision eliminates “fair share” fees, but local unions say they’re prepared.

The Supreme Court of the United States. Photo by Matt Wade/Flickr
A crowd forms outside of the Seattle Immigration Court for Maru Mora Villalpando’s second deportation hearing. Photo by Melissa Hellmann

Immigrant Rights Activist Avoids Deportation And Moves Towards Citizenship

A judge approved of Maru Mora Villalpando’s plan to begin the green card process.

A crowd forms outside of the Seattle Immigration Court for Maru Mora Villalpando’s second deportation hearing. Photo by Melissa Hellmann
Aneelah Afzali, executive director of American Muslim Empowerment Network, was the featured speaker at 21 Progress’s Rise #7 event. Photo by Melissa Hellmann

How a Local Muslim Activist Is Bridging the Faith Divide to Foster Hope

As part of 21 Progress’ Rise series, Aneelah Afzali drew parallels between anti-Muslim rhetoric and immigration xenophobia.

Aneelah Afzali, executive director of American Muslim Empowerment Network, was the featured speaker at 21 Progress’s Rise #7 event. Photo by Melissa Hellmann
Bob Ferguson is going after controversial Trump administration policies once again. Photo by Joe Mabel/Wikimedia Commons

AG Ferguson Takes on Trump’s Immigrant Family Separation

Washington’s Attorney General plans to sue the federal government over the “zero tolerance” policy.

Bob Ferguson is going after controversial Trump administration policies once again. Photo by Joe Mabel/Wikimedia Commons
Trans Pride Seattle seeks to strengthen the transgender and non-binary community. 
Photo courtesy of Gender Justice League

Trans Pride Seattle Continues Marching

In light of federal budget cuts, the parade that highlights marginalized voices survives due to community crowdfunding.

Trans Pride Seattle seeks to strengthen the transgender and non-binary community. 
Photo courtesy of Gender Justice League
Hidden River Farms is 100 acres of farmland in Grays Harbor County. Photo by Lucia Wyss

Sowing the Seeds of Mental Health

Suicide is an epidemic amongst agricultural workers, but young farmers and state legislators are working to find solutions.

Hidden River Farms is 100 acres of farmland in Grays Harbor County. Photo by Lucia Wyss