Seattle Foundation Blog

Element Notes

In this news roundup, it’s time to vote in the primary, our area is failing on several key aspects of accessibility for people with disabilities, Prop 1 could expand arts access and the ACA (Obamacare) repeal may be imminent

July 25, 2017

Deep community knowledge is a key benefit of working with Seattle Foundation. Our team has extensive knowledge about community issues and trends, as well as an expansive network of relationships with nonprofit organizations working locally, nationally and globally. We track key developments in each element of our Healthy Community Framework:  Arts & Culture, Basic Needs, Economy, Education, Environment, Health & Wellness, Vibrant Communities and Global Giving. Every other week, we compile Element Notes to share the latest developments affecting efforts to make Greater Seattle a stronger, more vibrant community for all.


Primary ballots are due on August 1. Check out King County Elections for logistics and read endorsements at The Stranger, The Seattle Times and Seattle Weekly.

Arts and Culture

New Sales Tax for the Arts? King County Prop. 1 Prompts Debate about Regressive Tax System and Cultural Access
The Seattle Times explores the Access for All sales tax proposal, a measure that would increase arts funding in King County. Seattle Foundation supports this ballot measure.

Basic Needs

"We Need Every Bit We Can Get:" Homeless Advocates Lose Fight for Bigger Human Services Levy
A renewal and expansion of the county’s Veterans and Human Services Levy, which benefits veterans, seniors and people experiencing homelessness, is making its way to the November ballot. But many say it does not go far enough. (The Stranger may have language or ads that not all find appropriate).

Should Landlords Be Allowed to Discriminate Against Former Prisoners?
"A Seattle bill before the City Council would prohibit landlords from automatically rejecting former prisoners as tenants, and would limit criminal background screening to the past two years."


A New Report Shows How Close the World is to Totally Eradicating Extreme Poverty
A new report by the United Nations finds that there’s a long way to go to reach its goal of eliminating extreme poverty by 2030. However, the global poverty rate is down, with 767 million people living in extreme poverty as of 2013, compared with 1.7 billion in 1999.

The Side Effect Of That New Malaria Drug? American Jobs
Researchers found that U.S. investment in global health created 200,000 jobs and is boon for the economy.

Health and Wellness

By a Hair, Senate Votes to Debate GOP Health Care Bill
With Vice President Mike Pence breaking a 50-50 tie, the Senate voted July 25 to start debating Republican legislation that would dismantle much of the Obama health care law.

Settlement: Seattle to Build Thousands of Sidewalk Curb Ramps Over Next 18 Years
In 2015, the City of Seattle was sued by three people with disabilities for violating the ADA by failing to provide sufficient sidewalk curb ramps. The City has reached a preliminary agreement and will be required to build or fix 22,500 curb ramps at an estimated cost of nearly $300 million.

King County Metro Access Slammed by Audit, Claims of Poor Service
Despite considerable financial investment, Access, King County Metro’s ADA transit program, is hit by complaints of significant delays. A recent audit found multiple concerns with King County Metro’s customer service and pickup times.

Vibrant Communities

Feds Can’t Block Local Nonprofit From Giving Legal Aid to Unrepresented Immigrants, Judge Rules
In November, the Department of Justice sent a cease-and-desist letter to the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, ordering it to stop providing informal legal services to undocumented immigrants. The nonprofit then sued Attorney General Sessions and the federal judge in the case has issued a preliminary injunction in NWIRP’s favor. (The Stranger may have language or ads that not all find appropriate).

Tommy Le’s Family, Community Raise Questions in Fatal Shooting by Deputy
The Vietnamese community is still searching for answers about the death of Tommy Le, who was shot and killed by King County deputies a month ago.


Local Communities with Global Reach: International Giving by U.S. Community Foundations
New Council on Foundations and Foundation Center report finds increase in international giving by U.S. community foundations, including Seattle Foundation, which ranks fourth in global giving.

Nonprofit Collaboration 2.0
The social sector is demonstrating a growing trend toward greater collaboration between nonprofits and other partners as many realize they can’t achieve their missions without building new alliances.



For Philanthropists


social equalityBasic Needseconomic opportunityhealthy community frameworkphilanthropistseducationChildren and youthcommunities of opportunityElement Notes news roundup

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