Working for a safe, affordable, vibrant, innovative, and interconnected city.
Learn More Home Page This Department
Link to Office for Civil Rights Home Page Link to Office for Civil Rights Home Page Link to Office for Civil Rights About Us Page Link to Office for Civil Rights Contact Us Page
Office for Civil Rights Patricia Lally, Director
About Us
What is Illegal Discrimination?
How to File a Complaint
Labor Standards
Rules, Ordinances, Publications
Title VI Plan
Seattle Race and Social Justice Initiative
Disability Access and Services
Employing Immigrants
Contact Us
Newsletter Archive

September 2013 Newsletter Subscribe to this newsletter

September 2013

In this issue:

Administrative Rules proposed for City of Seattle Job Assistance Ordinance

The Seattle Office for Civil Rights (SOCR) has proposed Chapter 80, Administrative Rules for the City of Seattle's new Jobs Assistance Ordinance. SOCR also has proposed amendments to the Administrative Rules for Chapters 40 and 46. Chapter 40 describes SOCR's investigative process; Chapter 46 describes the appeal process. Members of the public have until Friday, September 20, 2013 to comment on these proposed Rules.

Send comments to or in writing to:
Seattle Office for Civil Rights
810 Third Ave., Suite 750
Seattle, WA 98104-1627

You can also comment online or ask questions at This information is available in other formats on request for people with disabilities by calling 206-684-4514 or e-mailing

Click here for more information and links.

Racial equity in education: community-wide workshop on October 12

Attend the next community-wide workshop On October 12 to implement the Call to Action to Eliminate Disproportionality in School Discipline.

Saturday, October 12, 9 a.m.
New Holly Gathering Hall, 7054 32nd Ave. S.

The Race and Social Justice Community Roundtable is inviting groups of students, family members, teachers and administrators to attend on October 12. Please recruit others from your school or organization to attend. The focus will be on implementation of strategies within schools, as well as across school districts. During the workshop we will discuss various positive discipline models, assess challenges, identify opportunities and hear from organizations that are working to eliminate racial inequities in discipline within their own institutions. We will start the day with a panel of school leaders who are breaking new ground to achieve different results. In addition, there will be focused time for you to work with others from your school.

At the last workshop in June, participants formulated a Call to Action aimed at eliminating racial inequities in school discipline. This Call to Action was adopted by the Race and Social Justice Community Roundtable on August 15, and now additional groups are signing on to show their support and work on implementation.

If you would like to sign on to the Call to Action, please contact Scott Winn, Race and Social Justice Community Roundtable staff, at or 684-4541. Register for the October 12 workshop at Please indicate if you will need childcare or interpretation.

For bus and driving directions:

Race and Social Justice Initiative recognized in new report

The City of Seattle's Race and Social Justice Initiative received a shout-out in a new report entitled Closing the Gap: The Federal Role in Respecting & Ensuring Human Rights at the State and Local Level. The report emphasizes the critical role of state and local agencies and officials in human rights implementation and highlights how existing resource constraints and structural barriers impede more robust state and local level monitoring and implementation. The report was produced by Columbia Law School's Human Rights Institute.

"A signature project of Seattle's Race and Social Justice Initiative (RSJI) is the Racial Equity Toolkit," writes the report, "which promotes the 'goal of eliminating racial inequity [by] incorporating a racial equity analysis and best practices into program, policy and procedure decisions.' Members of a roundtable convened by RSJI, including community group representatives, state and local government officials, the school superintendent and funders, use this toolkit internally to make policy, programmatic and budgetary changes that result in increased opportunities and success rates for communities of color."

Click here to view the report.

Public meeting September 17 to discuss Job Assistance Legislation

For many people coming out of prison, getting a job can be difficult. That will be changing soon. On June 10 the Seattle City Council unanimously passed the Job Assistance Legislation, an ordinance that regulates the use of criminal history in employment decisions. The ordinance prohibits employers from using criminal convictions as the basis for denying employment to qualified job applicants or employees unless there is a legitimate business reason to support an employer's actions. It also prohibits employers from requiring applicants provide criminal history information until after an initial screening of applications or resumes to eliminate unqualified applicants. The ordinance goes into effect on November 1st.

SOCR will host a public meeting on:

Tuesday, September 17th 7-9 p.m.
New Holly Gathering Hall
7054 32nd Ave South

Get information on the ordinance and answers to your questions. Childcare will be available - please call 206-684-4514 or email to request childcare. For bus and driving directions visit:
The Jobs Assistance Ordinance does not apply to jobs where the employee will or may have unsupervised access to children under sixteen years of age, developmentally disabled persons, or vulnerable adults. Visit for more information. If you are an employer and would like technical assistance, or an applicant or employee who has a question about the new law, please call (206)684-4500 or email

Seattle Public Schools seeks nominations for Equity and Race Advisory Committee to the Superintendent

Deadline is Friday, Sept. 13

Seattle Public Schools (SPS) has organized an Equity and Race Advisory Committee that is in charge of implementing SPS's race and equity policies throughout the district. The committee will be composed of up to 40 parents, families, guardians, community members, teachers, staff and instructional leaders who reflect the diversity of Seattle Public Schools families.

The committee's work involves one to two meetings a month, a presentation of the School Family Partnerships report to the Superintendent and a presentation to the School Board.

For more information visit Seattle Public Schools seeks nominations for Equity and Race Advisory Committee to the Superintendent on the District's web site. The deadline is Friday, September 13.

Women's Commission and Councilmember Mike O'Brien seek intern to examine "food deserts" in Seattle

The Seattle Women's Commission (SWC) and Seattle City Councilmember Mike O'Brien are seeking an unpaid intern to:
  • Provide research assistance.

  • Respond to information needs and research questions.

  • Develop a report on the impact of food deserts on women and children in the City of Seattle, with a specific focus on access to WIC providers.

  • The intern will be housed in the Office of Councilmember O'Brien and work directly with him, his staff and members of the Women's Commission. The internship will require an estimated 15-20 hour per week commitment. The Women's Commission is researching the impact of food deserts in the Seattle area on women and children. SWC will use this research to make policy recommendations to the City and Mayor's Office on the topic.

    The ideal candidate is interested in food policy as well as gender issues, and enrolled in a bachelor's or master's degree program for urban planning, public administration, political science, public health, geography, JD Program or a related field; or any combination of education and experience related to food systems.

    To apply for this position, please email a resume and cover letter by Wednesday, September 18 to, with "SWC Food Policy Intern" in the subject line. In your cover letter, please address why you are interested in the internship and a brief summary of skills and experience you bring to the position. For more information call 206-684-4540.


    To SOCR investigator Karina Bull:

    "Thank you for your professionalism, partnership and timely communication throughout this process -we have been impressed both with how you have conducted yourself and how you have advocated equally and fairly for both parties."

    - Respondent to a recent settlement agreement

    To Brenda Anibarro, project manager for the Jobs Assistance Ordinance:

    I want to commend you and the rest of the SOCR team working on the implementation of the ordinance. The thoroughness and thoughtfulness of your work in such a short timeframe has been really impressive! I have also appreciated the time give to have from all interested folks. Great work!

    - Merf Ehman, Columbia Legal Services


    Free workshops and speaker series highlight upcoming Science Center exhibit on race

    Saturday, May 11, 9 a.m. 3:30 p.m.

    From September 28 to January 5, 2014, Pacific Science Center will host the exhibit. RACE: Are We So Different. Developed by the Science Museum of Minnesota in collaboration with the American Anthropological Association, the exhibit challenges how we think about race and human variation, and reveals the reality - and unreality - of race. The exhibit uses interactive maps, historical artifacts, computer simulations of gene flows, compelling photographs and multimedia presentations to probe how racism has shaped our country's history and impacted every social institution in the United States.

    In conjunction with this exhibit, the Seattle Race and Social Justice Initiative is offering free Group Workshops, a Speaker Series and Facilitator Trainings. RSJI also invites organizations to make a Commitment to Action to build racial equity in our region.

    Click here to learn more.

    "Race: The Power of an Illusion" Community Workshop Saturday, October 5

    Seattle Police Department invites you to the Race Power of An Illusion Community Training with Seattle police officers on:

    Saturday, October 5, 2013 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
    Truevine of Holiness Missionary Baptist Church
    7817 S. 125th St., Seattle, WA 98178

    RSVP by Tuesday, October 1, 2013
    Contact Maggie Olsen at or call 206-684-8672

    In partnership with the United Black Clergy, the Seattle Human Rights Commission and the Seattle Race and Social Justice Initiative / Seattle Office for Civil Rights.

    Train the trainer session for "Race: Power of an Illusion"

    Your opportunity to become a facilitator for upcoming community "Race: Power of an Illusion" (RPOI) sessions

    Saturday, November 16, 8:30 to 5pm (location to be announced).

    To attend this workshop you must have participated in a "Race: Power of an Illusion" discussion and viewed the 3-part video series. Please email Maria Rodriguez at or call 206-684-0548 to register.

    Take a moment to like our page to stay connected and engaged

    Everyone is welcome to join our page to stay in touch!


    Seattle Office for Civil Rights
    Julie Nelson, Director

    For newsletter questions contact Elliott Bronstein, (206)684-4507 Elliott.Bronstein@Seattle.Gov