Western Washington University President Sabah Randhawa, himself a Pakistani immigrant, discussed the “heavy burden” on every person of color in a statement Friday, May 30.
“I urge every member of our community to consider the ways systems of oppression and violence harm us and others, and to find ways to support and uphold members of our community who are suffering right now,” Randhawa said.. “While we are distant from each other, the simple act of checking in with friends and colleagues, of reaching out, is more important and more powerful than ever.”
Whatcom County is asking for permission to advance to Phase 2 under Gov. Jay Inslee’s Safe Start plan to ease business closures and social-distancing requirements aimed at fighting the new coronavirus pandemic.
Members of the Whatcom County Council, acting as the county Health Board, voted unanimously Tuesday, June 2, to approve the Health Department’s application for a Phase 2 variance and send it to Inslee for consideration.
“I have the document ready and I am going to sign it right now,” said Whatcom County Executive Satpal Sidhu.
But just because there’s no data about protests that can be easily compared in a chart doesn’t mean we’re bereft of information, said Pat Gillham, a professor of sociology at Western Washington University. There’s 50 years of research on violence at protests, dating back to the three federal commissions formed between 1967 and 1970. All three concluded that when police escalate force—using weapons, tear gas, mass arrests and other tools to make protesters do what the police want—those efforts can often go wrong, creating the very violence that force was meant to prevent. For example, the Kerner Commission, which was formed in 1967 to specifically investigate urban riots, found that police action was pivotal in starting half of the 24 riots the commission studied in detail. It recommended that police eliminate “abrasive policing tactics” and that cities establish fair ways to address complaints against police.
But just because there’s no data about protests that can be easily compared in a chart doesn’t mean we’re bereft of information, said Pat Gillham, a professor of sociology at Western Washington University. There’s 50 years of research on violence at protests, dating back to the three federal commissions formed between 1967 and 1970. All three concluded that when police escalate force — using weapons, tear gas, mass arrests and other tools to make protesters do what the police want — those efforts can often go wrong, creating the very violence that force was meant to prevent.
Minorities continue to see a disproportionate impact of the new coronavirus in Whatcom County, according to detailed numbers released weekly on Sundays by the health department.
Hispanics now represent 18% of the confirmed COVID-19 cases in the county, though 9% of the county identifies as Hispanic. That’s up from 15% of cases May 17.
Whatcom County was not able to file to move to Phase 2 of Washington state’s re-opening plan on Monday, June 1, after new benchmarks were announced Friday, the Whatcom County Health Department announced.
Though the county planned to file, health department director Erika Lautenbach said during a briefing Monday that the county did not make a 10 a.m. deadline to file before a special health board county council meeting convened. Lautenbach said the county health department hoped to have the forms completed this afternoon so that the county’s application could be sent to the state on Tuesday.
Andrea Muñoz Vargas says her immigration status is the last thing on her mind during 12-hour night shifts in a Wenatchee hospital’s intensive care unit, where she works as a nurse caring for coronavirus patients. “I just need to stay focused.”
COVID-19 is so new that doctors need every piece of information they can get as they figure out what’s working and what’s not. So Muñoz Vargas watches her patients carefully for any changes that could indicate their organs are failing. Or maybe that they’re improving enough to get off a ventilator.
About 1% of kids who visited a Seattle hospital in April had been infected with the novel coronavirus, according to the first large-scale survey for antibodies in children. The study also found most of the youngsters developed a robust immune response, an encouraging sign for a future vaccine.
“If children can respond to the virus, then children can respond to a vaccine,” said Dr. Janet Englund, an infectious disease specialist at Seattle Children’s and co-author of the report. “And vaccines that are given to children are one of the most effective ways to stop the spread of disease in the community.”
In the summer of 2009, after graduating from college, I sat in the audience at Town Hall at the only wake I have ever attended for a newspaper. The deceased was the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, and as I sat there in my summer dress listening to public mourning for a newsroom, the outsized loss I felt was bigger than the fate of any particular outlet. With print media jobs virtually nonexistent in the financial crisis I had graduated into, I was grieving the future I’d imagined for myself.
For the class of 2020, graduating into the coronavirus pandemic will mean reckoning with that kind of grief. Seattle Times economics columnist Jon Talton says the degree to which a recession affects graduates’ career trajectories depends on their skills and field of study, but in general, “graduates that enter the job market during a rec
The Western Washington University Border Policy Research Institute has found that Canadians comprise approximately 75% of cross-border travelers to and from Whatcom County, depending on the exchange rate, according to information Associate Director Laurie Trautman in an email to The Bellingham Herald. In 2018, that would have represented approximately 10.5 million southbound Canadian travelers through the Blaine, Lynden, Sumas and Point Roberts points of entry.
Those Canadians represent a large portion of consumers in Whatcom County — anywhere from 2% to 46% of the weekend customer base Whatcom County retailers see, Trautman reported, adding that the average is about 17%.