Saturday, August 30, 2003 Meeting Notes

Tacoma PJH met August 30, 2003, at Associated Ministries at 10:00 a.m. Present for check-in were Susan, Mark J., Rob, Sallie, Karen H., Sheila, Kyle, Colleen, Elaine. General discussion followed by check-in. Agenda facilitated by Sallie.


HOUSEKEEPING: Sallie Sallie will be out of town next Saturday, September 20th and October 3 (for surgery). Mark will open and close Assoc. M. building.

CITIZEN'S OVERSIGHT COMMITTEE: Colleen explained that this committee, seeking to form a citizen oversight committee of the police department was in place and meeting before the David Brame case broke. Representatives to the committee include members of the Black Collective, Human Resources Committee, ACLU, Associated Ministries and others. Members from the TPD and the police union have been invited but have only participated once. This is one of various efforts over the last 20 years to form an effective committee to address citizen complaints and questions about the actions of the TPD. Colleen said that the TNT gives the impression that Crystal Clear is doing the same job that the Oversight Committee plans to do but that impression is false. That is, the committee hopes to represent real power in dealing with problems with the police. Various subcommittees are studying probable issues. One subcommittee is studying the shape of similar committees in other cities - Seattle, Portland, a city in Idaho: whether they have the power of subpoena, an ombusman, how and if they influence the policy of the police department. Another subcommittee has tried to study past efforts to form a committee in Tacoma although they haven't been able to discern the causes for failure. The committee is planning to hold public forum(s) to discuss this proposition and to see if there is interest in bringing it before the City Council. Colleen asks us to be alert to the activities and needs of the committee.

Rob: Asked the connection between Crystal Clear and this committee.

Elaine: Crystal Clear is specifically looking at issues of domestic violence within the police department.

WHEELS OF JUSTICE: Voices in the Wilderness will tour Washington October 4 - 18 in their big, colorful School bus. Mark asks that we think of sponsoring an event. October 11 will be Earth Charter Day so the group expressed interest in something for the 12th (a Sunday) and 13th. Interest expressed in involving college students from TCC, PLU, UPS, etc. Also Bellarmine and some high school students. Sallie suggested involving progressive churches. The group offers speakers, information on how to do media interviews, blood drives, educationals, poetry readings, press conferences, faith related activities, lobby training, potlucks, musical events - Bands Against Bombs. Their emphasis is on peace and justice issues.

A question was raised about accommodations for the group but it was felt that they use the bus. There is interest in meeting with Inslee, Brian Baird and Adam Smith. Members of The Middle East Forum are interested in being involved. Other strategies -- involve students in conceptionalizing an event. Involve UFP. Sallie asked for ideas about interested parties who might be able to help with funding an event.

EARTH CHARTER - COMMUNITY SUMMIT: Sheila Plans are proceeding. Eighteen people are now on the planning committee. Committees are working on lunch/prepartions, webcast and children's track. A person is working on a poster/flyers for the event. Kinkos is helping with the printing.

Sheila is still concerned about having enough people for the day of the event to be greeters, time keepers, record keepers. She hopes to schedule volunteers so that no volunteer works for more than three hours. People have expressed interest in selling buttons and tee shirts at the summit. There will be no charge of the event itself which is done as a public service.

Mark: Reported that there is scarcely any news about the Earth Charter on the web. He says it's almost like a blackout. He suggests that we raise $3000 to publish the Earth Charter in the newspaper and print it the week preceeding the event. Sheila expressed need to get an EIN so her group could accept donations. There is a story in the current Channel re: the Summit and the Earth Charter and also the Towhee, the newsletter of the Audubon Society. Sallie suggested that the fact that the Earth Charter addresses problems/ideas about people and not just the earth be included at the front of information/publicity about the group.

Discussion: Kuchinich and Dean.

Sheila says there will be a booth for voter registration at the summit.

BILL OF RIGHTS: Discussion of the "failure" of Bill of Rights Resolution before the council. (Five of nine council members voted for the resolution but McGavick was absent for the recall vote so it failed four to four. (Voting for: McGavick, Evans, Baarsma, Moss, Miller. Voting against: Lonergran, Talbert, Phelps, Ladenberg.) Tim Smith will be working to bring a resolution before the state legislature. (Alaska, Hawaii, Vermont have passed one.) There is also a move to make December 15 - which is Bill of Rights day - to the attention of the schools and City Council - encouraging school events and celebrations. Tim is getting a tax #, opening a bank account for BORDC.

Discussion of # of Earth Charters we have on hand. Sheila is ordering 500 more, some in Spanish.

Tie-in Earth Charter to Earth Day, April 22. There will be EArth Charter follow-through.

Elaine: Suggested we let public schools know that we need help and involvement in these activities.


Asked about funding for Domestic Abuse victims, et al., Elaine says the city council and the county are looking at a "one-stop shopping" program to meet needs and coordinate the efforts of various groups. (Among other information, Elaine told us that the assertion that domestic violence cases are the most risky for cops is a myth.) Discussion of police training (29 hrs.) Discussion of how to educate the community about domestic violence, change attitudes and the culture. Discussion.

Respectfully, Karen H.