This is what people power looks like! Please review our full demands.
Mayor Murray, in a joint announcement with Councilmember Juarez, Councilmember Gonzalez and Councilmember Burgess, has confirmed a delay in the design review process and any November votes on the budget for this project. Long before any elected official of Seattle spoke out against the bunker, communities from all over the Seattle area – especially communities of color most impacted by police violence – organized tirelessly against the bunker. A few months ago, members of the Seattle Black Book Club along with local organizers, started a campaign to #BlocktheBunker upon discovering the plans to build a $160 million dollar militarized precinct in North Seattle.
Since then, we have gathered support from 1,000s of individuals. Every phone call, email, social media share, council meeting comment, dollar donated and foot on the pavement has built the power of #BlocktheBunker. Activists representing several organizations, as well as many individuals have worked tirelessly for months organizing against the bunker, which served as a catalyst for Seattle city officials to start speaking out against this project. Councilmember O’Brien’s no vote on the resolution was an extension of the people’s voice, your solidarity is appreciated. Councilmember Sawant also stands with #BlocktheBunker. We recognize Mayor Murray is beginning to listen to the realities of policing in our communities as he prepares his campaign for re-election. We will make sure his office continues to hear and know Black Lives Matter. We will be present. Our collective voices will be heard. We are optimistically vigilant and have good right to be: While this is a big win for Seattle communities, we know this is only a pause to the building of this bunker.
We recognize this is the beginning of the long fight ahead.
And we are ready.
#BlocktheBunker is a movement of the people of this city. We will block this bunker in its entirety. The people will not allow it to be built. The money the city is attempting to use to expand the violent institution of policing should go towards social services, to our houseless communities, to housing that is actually affordable for those being displaced from our city. Seattle must invest in powerful communities, not in powerful police.
Not only will we stop the building of the bunker, we will also stop the building of the new youth jail, whose permits still need the approval of the city of Seattle in order to be built. Police have never worked in favor of communities of color. We will oppose the mayor’s proposal to fund 200 new police officers. All of this will be blocked.
The fight is just beginning! Join us this Monday, September 19th, 2:00 pm at Seattle City Council Chambers, where we will be testifying against the bunker, new youth jail, and 200 new police officers. This will be followed by a rally in front of city hall at 4:00 pm.
Join us is raising our collective voice and getting the answers we need:
- #InvestInCommunity | Now that the money that would have been invested in the bunker is available: How will the City of Seattle invest in housing as well as the human, health and social services our communities continue to ask for?
- #NoNewYouthJail | Why is our city saying their hands are tied and that they must build a new youth jail, despite their goal of ending youth incarceration?
- #NoNewPolice | Why is our city planning to hire new officers, when we have yet to address the egregious training and accountability systems currently in place? Why be so irresponsible, when we haven’t even begun the work of addressing the DOJ decree? Why unleash even more officers into our already over policed communities?
- #BlocktheBunker | We know a delay is just a pause in the status quo: Why have there been no tours of the second 15,000 sq foot facility in the North End? Does our city even need a new building?
This work is building up our powerful communities, who must be the ones entrusted to respond to the increasingly complex needs of our people. We will not stop until we ensure our people have what it takes to thrive in this city.
When the people rise up, we will win, and we will not rest until we do.