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Record No: Res 31928    Version: Council Bill No:
Type: Resolution (Res) Status: Adopted
Current Controlling Legislative Body City Clerk
On agenda: 1/27/2020
Ordinance No:
Title: A RESOLUTION reaffirming Seattle as a welcoming city and condemning all forms of oppression throughout the world.
Sponsors: Alex Pedersen
Supporting documents: 1. Summary and Fiscal Note, 2. Proposed Amendment (added; 1/27/20), 3. Signed Resolution 31928, 4. Affidavit of Publication


RESOLUTION __________________


A RESOLUTION reaffirming Seattle as a welcoming city and condemning all forms of oppression throughout the world.


WHEREAS, previous Seattle City Councils have affirmed that Seattle is a welcoming city and have periodically condemned certain instances of oppression in various parts of the world; and

WHEREAS, “oppression” is defined by the Cambridge Dictionary as “a situation in which people are governed in an unfair and cruel way and prevented from having opportunities and freedom” and is defined by Merriam-Webster as an “unjust or cruel exercise of authority or power;”

WHEREAS, as a Human Rights City, Seattle is committed to protecting and promoting human rights and dignity, including civil, political, social, economic, and cultural rights; and

WHEREAS, Seattle continues to promote inclusion, integration, equity, and acceptance of a wide range of diverse opinions and encourages civic participation by all its residents; and

WHEREAS, the City has a history of stating its commitment to human rights with the creation in 1963, of the Seattle Human Rights Commission to make recommendations “with regard to the development of programs for the promotion of equality, justice and understanding among all citizens of the City” and recommend policies “affecting civil rights and equal opportunity;” and

WHEREAS, Resolution 31730, adopted by the Council in February 2017, affirmed the City of Seattle as a Welcoming City that promotes policies and programs to foster inclusion, serves its residents without regard to immigration and refugee status or other protected class status, and continues its commitment to advocating and supporting the well-being of all residents; and

WHEREAS, in response to the Trump administration’s January 25, 2017 Executive Orders, which expanded the scope and speed of immigration law enforcement, the Council passed Ordinance 125296, providing the Office of Immigrant and Refugee Affairs $1 million to contract with organizations to provide legal representation or guidance and referral services for legal representation to indigent persons in need of representation for matters related to immigration status; and

WHEREAS, in October 2017, the Council adopted Resolution 31775, strengthening public safety by affirming the City’s support for immigrant and refugee witnesses, survivors, and victims of crime through exploration of strategies and partnerships to help them feel safer in reporting crimes given the potential for the Trump administration’s policies to create a chilling effect on reporting; and

WHEREAS, in October 2017, the Council also adopted Resolution 31779, affirming Seattle’s support of immigrant communities through support of the Deferred Action Childhood Arrival (DACA) program and committing to policies that protect vulnerable communities while opposing national and federal policies and rhetoric targeting immigrants and immigrant communities; and  

WHEREAS, the Council in June 2018 adopted Resolution 31822, opposing the Trump administration’s practices of separating and detaining migrant families seeking asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border and detention camps in violation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; and

WHEREAS, the Council adopted Resolution 31844 in October 2018, affirming that the principles adopted by the Council in being a welcoming city also apply to human rights defenders, responding to the increase in targeting for persecution human rights defenders in Washington State by the federal administration; and

WHEREAS, in December 2018, the Council adopted Resolution 31858, affirming and commending the validity of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to uphold the rights and dignity of Native peoples and the human rights of immigrants, as well as all other residents and visitors to Seattle; and

WHEREAS, in May 2019, the Council adopted Resolution 31890, declaring the City’s support as a welcoming city for providing permanent protection and a path to citizenship for immigrant youth and temporary protected status (TPS) and Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) recipients; and

WHEREAS, seven of the nine-member City Council were sworn into office on January 6, 2020; and

WHEREAS, the new City Council is in agreement with previous Councils in standing in solidarity with the City’s residents and opposing all forms of oppression affecting communities throughout the world; and

WHEREAS, the City Council remains committed to standing against global oppression and requests that our elected officials representing Seattle at the federal level, currently U.S. Senators Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell and Representatives Pramila Jayapal and Adam Smith, continue to support and take action to object to such oppression; NOW, THEREFORE,


Section 1. The Seattle City Council reaffirms that Seattle is a welcoming city.

Section 2. The Seattle City Council condemns all forms of oppression throughout the world.

Section 3. The City’s Office of Intergovernmental Relations will continue to alert the Seattle City Council about international issues impacting Seattle and inform Councilmembers when City Council action could contribute meaningfully to a positive outcome.

Section 4. This resolution does not in any way impede or limit any Seattle City Councilmember’s ability to introduce future resolutions to state their views about international issues.


Adopted by the City Council the ________ day of _________________________, 2020, and signed by me in open session in authentication of its adoption this ________ day of _________________________, 2020.


President ____________ of the City Council

Filed by me this ________ day of _________________________, 2020.


Monica Martinez Simmons, City Clerk