It is officially election season. You have probably seen the yard signs scattered across Seattle, and for the love of god hopefully received your ballot in the mail because your voter registration is up to date. Whether you’re a first-time or long-time voter, we’re about to show you why this election matters to you as a Raver and PLUR Warrior.
This year, Dance Music Northwest is taking a special interest in the Seattle City Council races. Our policy is to promote responsibility and common sense harm reduction in the electronic music community, and now we’re going even farther.
For the first time ever we will be officially endorsing Seattle City Council Candidates. You may wonder why this is important. By electing representatives into office that share our values, then working closely alongside them and local law enforcement, we can find a way to change the current environment and make safety the #1 priority.
We decided on our endorsements by sending each campaign a questionnaire with five questions. These questions tested each candidate on issues that matter to our Rave Family, such as their stance on making pill and powder testing available at music festivals and events. This practice has been proven to aid in the reduction of incidents at events such as Shambhala.
- What is your view on abstinence-based anti-drug messaging? Do you believe it is effective?
- Do you support pill and powder testing outside of EDM events?
- What is your opinion of the RAVE Act? Do you support this and other similar types of legislation?
- Do you believe needle exchange programs are of benefit to the community? If not, what would you implement in order to increase the safety of the community?
- Studies show recidivism decreases when addicts are treated through rehabilitation instead of lengthy jail sentences. What would you do to increase support through rehabilitation programs?
The responses were encouraging. Many of the City Council candidates share our values, that harm reduction is more effective than abstinence and that the RAVE Act needs to be amended. We decided to endorse all those candidates who embraced our values. If both candidates in a district supported the EDM scene’s positions, we endorse them both.
While we’ve created what we believe is an exhaustive list based on our own issue priorities, do your own research to find out which candidates cover all that you hold important. The issues we chose to endorse on are only a small portion of the candidates’ platforms.
Ravers can make our voice heard and show our elected officials that we demand policy that promotes safety and smart decisions. We can make a difference. If we stand together, we could become the first city in the United States to allow amnesty for pill and powder testing or other common sense harm reduction. We could do something special, and lay the groundwork for a nation.
How do City Council elections work? The format of the City Council elections breaks the city into nine districts. Your address determines which district’s election you vote in. Click here to find out what district you vote in. Then follow our endorsements below.
Endorsements by Council District
- Southwest: Shannon Braddock; Lisa Herbold
- Southeast: Bruce Harrell
- East Central: Pamela Banks
- Lake Union to Sand Point: Michael Maddux, Rob Johnson (dual endorsement)
- North: None (no responses, use your best judgment N.D. ravers!)
- Green Lake to Golden Gardens: Catherine Weatbrook
- Downtown to Discovery Park: Sally Bagshaw
- Position 8 (At Large): Jon Grant
- Position 9 (At Large): Bill Bradburd, Lorena Gonzalez (dual endorsement)
Through our research and conversations with the candidates, we believe that voting these representatives into Seattle’s City Council will have an overwhelmingly positive impact on rave safety, harm reduction, and cooperation between the government, law enforcement, and the people who work tirelessly to create the shows we love.
Don’t forget to research and make sure, above all else, that you submit your ballots and vote! If you have any questions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the Seattle City Council help page.