Summer 2017 Squire Park Newsletter

In this Issue:

  • Summer Meeting & BBQ
  • Who Will Lead Our Schools
  • Dog Waste Stations
  • Midtown Center Purchased
  • Upcoming Events
  • First Central Station Project on 12th
  • Property Tax Relief Program
  • School Board Candidates
  • BBQ Photos
 


Mural to Celebrate Workers Coming to S. Jackson Street

In late April, Jackson Street will be transformed by a mural on the top portion of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO building on 16th. The mural is our gift to the community.

Installed on panels across the building, the mural depicts labor history through the lens of the working women and men in Washington, focusing on stories that are frequently not told but inform the persistent struggle for economic, racial, and social justice that is labor’s legacy in Washington State. Since our building is at the nexus of Seattle’s historic Central Area and International Districts, the mural highlights the African American and Asian Pacific Island communities. It shows how our history is informed through struggle, movement building, and solidarity – and so much is covered – from the free speech fights, to the general strike to the No WTO march; from migrant organizing to Rosie the Riveter, to Black Lives Matter.

The mural shows pride, solidarity, and hope – and it also tells the truth, we see the Chinese expulsion, the detainment of Japanese, the Everett and Centralia Massacres, the segregation and desegregation of organized labor. We learn from the triumphs, and the errors of the past. Throughout the mural, during hard times and good times, we see the resilience of workers and the continuing fight for a better world. The mural tells our history, and the final section depicts our hopes and aspirations for the future

Katherine Chilcote, muralist and founder of Building Bridges, and Devon Hale, a young, local artist with historical roots in the International District collaborated on the mural. The artists are proud members, and Building Bridges is signatory, to the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, District 5.

The art speaks volumes, but we also want to supplement the painting with a website that will give more information on the history, and the unions connected to the history. We hope to provide links to the website at street level, so passersby can get more information on the spot.

Grants from Seattle’s Dept. of Neighborhoods, and 4Culture, along with donations from affiliates and community partners of the labor council turned our vision into a beautiful reality. We are still in the process of fundraising so we can add a website that includes written and oral narrative, along with digital reproduction of the mural.

Few murals since the WPA funded projects in the 40’s have depicted the lives of everyday working women and men. As labor murals are being destroyed in other parts of the country, we are intent on celebrating our rich history. We are telling the stories of workers, especially migrant workers, black workers, latino workers, Asian pacific island workers – the stories of the women and men who built Washington State, and continue to fight for social justice; the stories of the Labor Movement. It is our hope that this mural provides recognition for those who built this state and also inspiration as we resist oppression and hate today, and collectively build a brighter, more just future.

The mural opening celebration will be in mid May and is open to the community.

For more information, please contact Lynne Dodson, Secretary Treasurer of the Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO at Ldodson@wslc.orgor (206) 281-8901.

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Your Presence is Requested for the April 8th Meeting

At the last Squire Park Community Council quarterly meeting in January, several dozen neighbors showed up to hear about ways residents of local communities-- neighborhoods on the scale of Squire Park--can work together to prepare for and deal with emergencies.  The second stage of that discussion will be at the next SPCC quarterly meeting on April 8.

This will not be a discussion about how government agencies can deal with natural disasters affecting communities, but a discussion about how all of us can work together to help each other under circumstances where many have needs and others have the ability to help. 

If you live in, work in, or go to school in or near the area bounded by E. Union Street, 23rd Avenue, S. Jackson Street, and 12th Avenue, SPCC is the Central Area community council for you. 

We meet quarterly on the second Saturday of January, April, July, and October at 10 AM at Centerstone, the Central Area’s historic fire station on 18th Avenue.  We share information and work together to build community, not just to prepare for a possible mishap, but to work on efforts to make our community more vibrant.

We work on neighborhood grants to improve parks and other community spaces.  We meet with developers and institutions proposing development projects in the neighborhood.

Squire Park is changing rapidly, and there are hundreds of new people living here who have arrived in the last year or so.   If you are a relative newcomer, the SPCC meeting is a place to meet your neighbors, learn more about the Central Area, and learn how you can help strengthen the community.

You may have read that Mayor Murray recently made a decision to cut City government support for District Councils.  District Councils are different from community councils such as SPCC, and the Mayor’s decision does not relate to SPCC.  Community Councils have never received regular City staff support and funding. 

The newsletter you are reading is an ongoing project by your community council.  It’s delivered by volunteers to more than 3,000 doorsteps four times a year.  Nothing would make those volunteers happier than knowing that the newsletter inspired you to come say hello at the April 8 meeting.  Whether you have lived in the neighborhood for 30 years or three months, your presence is welcome.

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