Task force will tackle issues of racial justice, police reform

Inslee names civil rights activists, pastors, and cops to panel that may forge ideas for new laws

Courtesy image

Courtesy image

Staff report

OLYMPIA — Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday named a 24-member task force to examine issues of policing and racial justice, and try to forge recommendations for legislation on independent investigations involving police use of force.

Black Lives Matter, NAACP, Latino Civic Alliance, Equal Rights Washington and Disability Rights Washington are among the organizations represented. The panel also includes a relative of Charleena Lyles, a pregnant mother shot and killed in her home by Seattle police in 2017, and a member of the John T. Williams Organizing Committee, named for the Native American woodcarver who was walking across the street carrying his carving knife and a small piece of wood when he was shot and killed by a Seattle police officer in 2010.

A county prosecuting attorney, and representatives of state troopers, sheriffs, police officers and the City of Seattle Office of Police Accountability are participating. A complete list of members can be found online at www.governor.wa.gov.

Task force members will review the investigative protocols under I-940, the voter-approved measure aimed at curbing the use of deadly force by law enforcement officers. The panel will consider other independent investigation models, and provide input to help inform legislation for the 2021 session, according to a press release. Inslee announced formation of the task force earlier this month. The panel will hold its first meeting in July.




Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@covingtonreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.covingtonreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in News

Washington State Supreme Court Justices (back row, L-R) Raquel Montoya-Lewis, Sheryl Gordon McCloud, Mary I. Yu, G. Helen Whitener, (front row, L-R) Susan Owens, Charles W. Johnson, Steven C. Gonzalez, Barbara A. Madsen and Debra L. Stephens.
Justices strike down Washington state drug possession law

Police must stop arresting people for simple possession.

In Phase 2 of Gov. Jay Inslee’s reopening plan, which was announced Jan. 28, restaurants can reopen at a maximum 25% capacity and a limit of six people per table. Inslee recently announced all counties will be staying in Phase 2 of the state’s reopening plan for the next several weeks. Pictured: People enjoy outdoor dining last summer in downtown Kent. Courtesy photo
Inslee: All of Washington to stay in Phase 2 for a few weeks

The governor issued a weekslong pause on regions moving backward, but has yet to outline a Phase 3.

Entrance to the Tukwila Library branch of the King County Library System. File photo
King County libraries will reopen in some cities for in-person services

Fall City, Kent libraries among six selected for partial reopening.

In a zipper merge, cars continue in their lanes and then take turns at the point where the lanes meet. (Koenb via Wikimedia Commons)
Do Washington drivers need to learn the zipper merge?

Legislators propose requiring zipper merge instruction in drivers education and in license test.

A South King Fire & Rescue firefighter places a used test swab into a secure COVID test vial on Nov. 18, 2020, at a Federal Way testing site. (Sound Publishing file photo)
Masks are still king in combating new COVID strains

A top UW doctor talks new strains, masks and when normal could return.

Washington State Capitol Building in Olympia. File photo
Democrats look to allow noncitizens to serve on school boards

A Senate bill takes aim at a state law requiring anyone seeking elected office to be a citizen.

A CVS pharmacist prepares a COVID-19 vaccine at Village Green Retirement Campus in Federal Way on Jan. 26. Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing
State health leader: We have a plan, we don’t have the supply

Two months after the COVID vaccine landed in Washington, many still struggle to secure their shots.

Gov. Jay Inslee talks about schools reopening during a Tuesday news conference. (TVW)
Inslee signs $2.2 billion COVID relief package

The federal funds will go to fight COVID, aid renters and reopen shuttered schools and businesses.

Remi Frederick, a Village Green employee receives her first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on Jan. 26 in Federal Way. Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing
Inslee: We have vaccine capacity, we just need the doses

Despite continued frustration from those seeking a shot, the state is making progress, he said.

Sunken and abandoned boat at Kirkland’s Marina Park (Photo Credit: King County Sheriff’s Office)
Abandoned boats in waterways are a ‘regional challenge,’ says King County Sheriff’s Office

Spokesperson says expensive and time-consuming boat recoveries happen about 20 times a year.

File photo
Pay freeze for Inslee and state lawmakers this year

A citizen panel approved a 1.75% increase for executives, legislators and justices 17 months from now.

Sea stars huddled at low tide (Photo credit: MARINe)
Research suggests warmer oceans are killing sea stars in Puget Sound

‘Wasting syndrome’ has decimated 70-100 percent of sea star populations in certain areas.