Dear Sound Transit Board Chair University Place Rep. Kent Keel, Vice Chair King County Executive Dow Constantine, Vice Chair Snohomish County Executive Dave Sommers, and Board Members Auburn Mayor Nancy Backus, Kenmore Councilmember David Baker, King County Council Chair Claudia Balducci, Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier, Everett Mayor Cassie Franklin, Lynnwood Mayor Christine Frizzell, Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell, Seattle City Council President Debora Juarez, King County Council Vice Chair Joe McDermott, WA State Secretary of Transportation Roger Millar, Renton City Councilmember Ed Prince, Fife Mayor Kim Roscoe, King County Councilmember Dave Upthegrove, King County Councilmember Peter Von Reichbauer, Tacoma Councilmember Kristina Walker, and Labor Liaison Mark Riker:
We write as civil rights advocates for Asian Pacific Islander communities from the Chinese American Citizens Alliance – Seattle (C.A.C.A. Seattle), OCA Asian Pacific Advocates Greater Seattle formerly known as Organization of Chinese Americans (OCA-GS), Japanese American Citizens League, Seattle Chapter (JACL-Seattle), and Filipino American Political Action Group of Washington (FAPAGOW).
The abhorrent and thoughtless proposals by Sound Transit staff to route trains through our fragile Chinatown-International District (CID) will further damage and destroy our vulnerable historic district neighborhood that has already suffered multiple historical racial disinvestments. The Sound Transit alternatives appear to have embedded implicit, institutional, unconscious bias, and purposeful discrimination, developed with total disregard for your anti-racist organizational policy and Title VI of the federal Civil Rights Act as amended.
We request the Sound Transit Board immediately intervene to 1) take the destructive CID-related alternatives off the table, and 2) conduct a review of how your internal equity systems failed which allowed these racially harmful alternatives to come this far.
Maria Batayola will act as the contact person to our organizations. She can be reached at email@example.com or at 206-293-2951. We look forward to a positive response within the next two weeks.
Stanley N. Shikuma
Dr. Connie So
JACL – Seattle
OCA – GS
Voice Co-Chair President