I thoroughly enjoyed the enlightenment from your article “Clock runs out in Olympia on bill to aid SeaTac Area mobile home residents” (March 16, 2018) because it presents an all too common scenario in Washington state, where county government doesn’t give a damn about the lives of working class people of Latino heritage. It’s a clear cut case of racism. Period.
It’s easier for county and state government officials to push around the working poor with zero political or economic voice in their affairs, rather than address systemic problems of routine abuse within government infrastructure. The article highlights overt forms of NIMBY-ism from so-called progressives who reinforce segregation and economic hardships through relocation programs to keep Latinos out of sight and out of mind.
In essence, county and state government officials deem it’s more acceptable to have Latinos work in low-paying jobs, rather than live in the same community because the mostly white decision makers do not value the lives of Latinos as much as whites.
Case in point: The fact the state had offered only a pittance of $2.5 million towards the purchase of the The Firs mobile home park, rather than its fair market value of $10.7 million for the 6.67-acre site. To add insult to injury, lawmakers didn’t even enforce existing laws to pay mobile home owners the $7,500 per single home and $12,500 for multi section ones because they thought it was “too much” trouble to pay people for uprooting their lives and moving 200 miles elsewhere.
I would like to see the homeowners of the The Firs mobile home park receive proper redress in their lawsuit against the City of SeaTac for its unlawful eviction of hard working families. Hopefully, this lesson in civic government will galvanize mobile home owners to take charge of their economic and political futures.
— Elisabeth Guerry