The Coalition’s State Legislative Priorities

The State Legislative Session has begun! Check back here for an updated list of our top legislative priorities. Last updated 3/1/24 at 12:30 PM. Bills That are Still “Alive” Fund affordable housing & shelter (HB 2276, SB 6191, $70 million budget request to backfill the document recording fee shortfall) HB 2276 and SB 6191 would fund more affordable housing through the Housing Trust Fund by increasing taxes on the sale of real estate over approx. $3 million, and decreasing taxes on the sale of less valuable real estate. Because these bills are “necessary to implement the budget”, they are not subject to legislative cutoff dates. In addition, we need approx. $70 MILLION added to the budget to prevent cuts to homelessness shelter and services. This is due to a shortfall in Document Recording Fees collected in recent years. We can’t afford to lose any capacity in these vital services. Address high insurance costs for housing providers (HB 2329) – PASSED THE LEGISLATURE Organizations that provide housing for people with low or no income face astronomical costs to insure their buildings, and these costs are quickly going up each year. HB 2329 would commission a study to learn why costs are increasing so dramatically, and would make recommendations to the legislature to help fix the problem. The legislature often commissions studies as an early step towards fixing a problem, and this is a step in the right direction. Reinstate the child support pass-through (HB 1652) – PASSED THE LEGISLATURE This bill would ensure that low-income families get their whole child support payment. Currently, the State takes a chunk of child support payments before passing the payment on to low-income families receiving TANF benefits. Help people keep TANF benefits when they need them (HB 2007) Note: this bill has been amended multiple …

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November 18th, 2021 Membership Meeting

Thank you to all who attended our November Membership meeting. We look forward to seeing you and sharing space at our December 16th Membership meeting which includes our 2022 Legislative Preview! This meeting will be two hours from 9am-11am The Coalition on Homelessness is hiring! This is the CORE position of OFFICE MANAGER at the Coalition. Thanks for getting this out to your networks. A full position description, salary range, and how to apply are on our website and here: http://bit.ly/CoalitionJob2021 Help us find a person who likes to set up systems and keep them in good working order, who relishes solving problems, and who sees the beauty in being the behind-the-scenes backbone of our small & mighty team and our broad & diverse community.*Priority application deadline: December 8, 2021.* COVID Vaccine Updates COVID-19 Vaccine Booster doses: Pfizer, Moderna, and the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines offer great protection against severe disease, hospitalization, and death. However, studies have shown that over time protection against mild and moderate disease can decrease. Booster doses are recommended for anyone 18 years of age and older who are at least 2 months past their single dose of Johnson & Johnson and for some groups of people who received either Moderna or Pfizer and are at least 6 months past their second dose. Learn more at Seattle King County Public Health. Check out the Seattle King County Public Health Blog: Public Health Insider for tips on COVID and the holiday season. Read past blog posts for lots of great information on COVID and how to stay safe. Advocacy Priorities Inflation Adjustment: If you live or work in Seattle: City of Seattle budget will be finalized on Monday, 11/22. We have a foundational ask which is the 2.8% inflation adjustment. Email your Councilmembers today to say …

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December 17, 2020 State Legislative Preview Meeting

Agenda 9:00-9:20             Welcome and Intro to State Legislative Advocacy 9:20-10:05           Legislative Priorities from our Statewide Advocacy Partners 10:05-10:30         Lawmaker Insights with State Senator Patty Kuderer and Representative Nicole Macri 10:30-11:00         Special Musical Guest Reggie Garrett State Legislative Advocacy Basics The first step in advocating on the state level is knowing who represents your community in Olympia. Washington state is divided into 49 legislative districts, which elect one senator to the State Senate and two representatives to the State House. You can use this link to look up your legislators: https://app.leg.wa.gov/districtfinder/ To look up your state legislative district and state legislators: Visit app.wa.leg.gov/districtfinder Enter your home address and click “Find My District”. If you do not have a traditional home address, enter a mailing address, or a cross street, shelter address, or park address. This determines who represents you. Make sure that under “District Type”, “Legislative” is selected. This will show you your legislative district (usually a number) and your Washington state senators and representatives. Make a note of your legislative district number. If you haven’t already, rename yourself with your legislative district in front of your name! Make a note of the names of your legislators! Bonus points if you click on your legislators’ names to learn more about them, including what committees they are part of and what bills they’ve sponsored Extra, extra bonus points if you add their contact information to your rolodex! Participating in Virtual Legislative Advocacy With the legislature meeting remotely this year, advocacy will happen remotely as well. Opportunities to connect with lawmakers will happen in the communities we live, which means your program or agency can play an important part in raising the voices of those most impacted by homelessness. We want to give some thought to the questions below. Please reach out to either …

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September 17, 2020 Membership Meeting

We are grateful to each presenter for sharing their time and passion with us at our September 17 Membership meeting, and to all who shared questions and insight. Thank you to all those listed below for providing content for our meeting: Omar Cuevas Vega, Community Organizer with Statewide Poverty Action Network Christina Wong, Government Relations Director at Northwest Harvest Emily Goodright, Case Manager at Hopelink Whitney Whittemore, Program Manager at Y Social Impact Center Erin McCann, Deputy Director at Legal Council for Youth and Children Joy Scott, Community Services Manager at City of Auburn  Cory Walster, Community Organizer at Civil Survival Rachel Koller, Resource Specialist at Recovery Cafe  Kelsey Mesher, Advocacy Director at Transportation Choices Coalition  Jessyca Murphy, Student Community Manager at Path with Art Below is a summary of some of the topics that we will discussed at our Thursday, September 17 Membership Meeting. This post will be updated as additional meeting materials are collected. Register now for our next Membership Meeting on Thursday, October 15 starting at 9am. Washington Dental Access Campaign Statewide Poverty Action Network (SPAN) has launched its Washington Dental Access Campaign to bring dental therapy to communities in need. Dental therapists are primary oral health care providers that deliver routine preventive and restorative care to those who need it most. Dental therapists are critical to expanding access to dental care where it is most out of reach, providing timely, quality care to rural, low-income communities and communities of color, and to patients who have coverage through Apple Health or are uninsured. Click here to learn more.  Dental therapists were recently authorized to work in select tribal communities. Community dental health advocates are pushing to extend this authorization statewide to bring much needed dental care to communities in need. Click here to support the campaign, and …

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August 20, 2020 Coalition Membership Meeting

Defund the Navigation Team and City of Seattle Budget Advocacy  The Seattle City Council voted to defund the entire Navigation Team as part of their 2020 budget rebalancing work, but Mayor Durkan vetoed the Council’s budget, so our work is not over. Check out this Op-Ed from REACH Co-Director Chloe Gale and our Executive Director Alison Eisinger explaining why the Navigation Team is wasteful, ineffective, and does not help to end homelessness. Negotiations over the 2021 city budget begin in a few weeks. Click here to sign up for advocacy alerts. Defunding the Navigation Team is part of a border effort to re-balance the city budget towards more culturally appropriate community support services and affordable housing. This effort is being led by a coalition group called Decriminalize Seattle, which the Coalition on Homelessness is a member. You can learn more about their efforts at participatory budgeting  here.  COVID-19 Toolkit for homeless service providers  The King County Healthcare for the Homeless Network (HCHN) has updated its COVID-19 Outreach Provider Toolkit to aid homeless service staff in their work. Michael Young-Hall and Chante Stubbs with HCHN will be joining us Thursday to review the toolkit and discuss how best to utilize it at your program.  Coalition Community Updates  Census 2020: The 2020 Census is underway, and under attack. The Federal Government is threatening to intentionally not include all residents in the final reported count, and the deadline for data collection has been arbitrarily shortened from October 31 to September 30. When in Doubt, Count. It is more important than ever to help those you work with complete the Census by the end of September. For those without a traditional address, the census will be conducting Service Based Enumeration to survey people at locations such as overnight shelter programs and meal sites from September …

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July 16, 2020 Coalition Membership Meeting

Statewide Eviction Moratorium The temporary statewide moratorium on evictions is set to expire August 1, which if not extended will put thousands in our community at risk of homelessness.Thank you Edmund Witter for explaining the eviction moratorium and sharing tips for service providers with clients involved in the eviction process, you can find a copy of his presentation here. And thank you Michele Thomas for sharing advocacy efforts underway to protect renters. WA’s eviction ban faces uncertain future, leaving renters in limbo, David Kroman, Crosscut Take Action: Tell Govenor Inslee to Extend the Eviction Moratorium through March 2021 JumpStart Seattle Advocacy Update Coalition Executive Director Alison Eisinger helped us celebrate the passage of JumpStart Seattle tax legislation and discussed the active conversation around the JumpStart Spending plan (which will be voted on very soon.. This legislation will “raise over $214 million per year in progressive revenue to respond to the immediate COVID crisis and focus on Seattle’s long-term economic revitalization and resiliency by investing in affordable housing and essential city services.” Take Action: Send a thank you message to the Seattle City Council for passing JumpStart Seattle, and encourage the Mayor to sign the legislation into law. Seattle Budget Advocacy Alison also talked about the City Council’s current work on the 2020 balancing budget and previewed the fall budget process (click here for a schedule of upcoming meetings). The Seattle/King County Coalition on Homelessness has signed on to the Decriminalize Seattle priorities to defund the SPD by at least 50%, reallocate those funds to community led health and safety systems, and release protesters arrested during this uprising without charges. Defund SPD teach-in recording: Learn more about efforts to defund SPD and reinvest in community-based and led responses to build health and safety. Voter registration and voting during COVID-19 Click here for …

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May 21, 2020 Coalition Annual Membership Meeting

Thank you to everyone who attended our Annual Membership Meeting! Sign up for Coalition emails to make sure you receive updates and notice of upcoming meetings. Highlights and resources shared on the call are below. Click here to view the Coalition’s PowerPoint Presentation. 9:00 – Welcome and Introduction Opening Ceremony by Chief Seattle Club Drummers – thank you Randy Tippins-Firstrider, Youth Outreach Case Manager with Chief Seattle Club ——– New Coalition Mission, Vision, and Values – Thank you to Coalition Board members for sharing our new guiding principles. And thank you to all our members who contributed to this process Kate Baber, President, Coalition on Homelessness Board Anna Strahan, Coalition on Homelessness Board Member Derrick Belgarde, Treasurer, Coalition on Homelessness Board ——– Board of Directors Election: Each dues-paying member organization has one vote to elect the slate of candidates for the Board. We are pleased that four Board members have agreed to renew their terms of service: Derrick Belgarde, Katie Escudero, Benjamin Miksch, Jenn Romo. Primary membership contacts will hear from us directly about this. If you think you are the person who should vote, or have a question, please email us Highlights from the past year with the Coalition – see photos in our PowerPoint Presentation linked above! ——– City, County and Statewide Advocacy Opportunities Regarding sweeps currently happening in the City of Seattle, Alison shared: “We don’t find it to be acceptable under any circumstances that people are left to fend for themselves. We have proudly and successfully wrangled with multiple mayoral administrations over these kinds of dehumanizing and morally wrong actions. And now this. In the context of a global health emergency, in context of interim guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) that clearly states in the absence of individual housing options people living unsheltered should …

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April 16, 2020 Coalition Membership Meeting

Thank you for joining our meeting!Sign up for Coalition emails to make sure you receive updates and notice of upcoming meetings. Agenda for Thursday, April 16 meeting 9:00 – Introduction and welcome Poetry reading by Anitra Freeman Coalition Solidarity Fund Solidarity Fund – Rapid Response to COVID-19 pandemic Coalition on Homelessness COVID-19 Homeless Service Change Tracker View tracker here: http://homelessinfo.org/resource/covid/ Email notices@homelessinfo.org with program updates Food Assistance Update Christina Wong, Government Relations Director, Northwest Harvest Seattle City Councilmember Gonzalez’s Bills Vy Nguyen, Legislative Aide to Seattle City Councilmember Lorena González CB 119761 will create another defense to eviction due to nonpayment over the next six months (such as temporary loss of income, etc.) CB 119762 will require landlords to accept payment plans for back rent Statewide Eviction Moratorium Extension Xochitl Maykovich, Political Director, Washington Community Action Network Updates to the temporary moratorium on evictions Public Benefits: COVID-19 Related Changes to State Public Assistance Programs Eric Tayag, Social Service Training Specialist, DSHS Hannah Rosenberger, Benefits Attorney, Solid Ground Grete Shultz, Benefits Attorney, Solid Ground COVID-19 Public Health Information Dr. Julie Dombrowski, Deputy Director, Public Health – Seattle & King County HIV/STD Program Coalition Staff Updates Advocacy work on hygiene stations Census 2020 Veterans Assistance Programs HOLD Thursday April 30, 9 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. (sign up for Coalition emails for notice of upcoming meetings) Next Monthly Membership Meeting: Thursday, May 21, 9:00 a.m. via Zoom (Please register for call). Resources from the meeting Coalition Select Committee on Homelessness Strategies and Investments, 4/8/2020 Public Benefits COVID-19 Related Changes Temporary Emergency COVID-19 Rule Changes on Public Benefits, presentation from Eric Tayag, DSHS One-page Washington State Public Benefits COVID-19 Updates, Solid Ground Additional Resources Northwest Harvest COVID-19 response page, with FAQ on food distribution changes Live map where you can find what food banks or meal programs are …

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2019 April 18 Membership Meeting Summary and CEA conversation materials

Thank you to sixty-three people who joined us on April 18 for our lively meeting, including a walk through the Coordinated Entry For All process and the opportunity to give feedback on what is and isn’t working about Interim Dynamic Prioritization. Coalition staff were pleased to share news that we are hiring for our new Administrative Coordinator position, and invite people to participate in Project Cool (for information about getting backpacks for students who are experiencing homelessness, email Hillary). We sent Hallie, our Member Services Coordinator, off to her new job in Olympia with hearty thanks and well wishes. And, you got LOUD for Housing by contacting your lawmakers in Olympia asking them to #BudgetForHousing! We know that about 40 people used the email action alert during the meeting, and others made calls – thank you! Materials/Handouts from meeting: April 18 Meeting Agenda Coordinated Entry Deep Dive handout from Joanna (including CEA experience flow, CEA Priority Pool workflow, definitions, and prioritization formula). Prints best on 8.5 x 14 paper. Mobility Policy Handout also available online here. Mobility Request Form also available online here. Africatown International Diversion Fund Information. More diversion information available on All Home’s website and Africatown International’s website. CEA April Newsletter Coordinated Entry for All (CEA) Deep Dive Joanna Bomba-Grebb from Coordinated Entry For All prepared a chart of how the CEA process, from assessment to housing, currently works. Thanks to staff from member agencies, including Solid Ground and DESC, for attending the meeting to share their perspectives about how each piece of the process actually works day to day on the ground. Our discussion on the process and continuous improvement was still continuing when the meeting ended at 11, so we decided that we will set aside some time at our Thursday, June 20 Membership meeting (9 …

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