Community warns against negative narratives after five wounded in shooting
Five people were wounded after two suspected shooters opened fire near the Rainier Beach Safeway parking lot on July 28.
The shooting took place during a weekly community outreach and healing circle pop-up event hosted by the Boys & Girls Clubs of King County and other local organizations. Occuring for nearly three years, the events provide discussion forums for community members to collectively address the impacts of gun violence on the area and have been credited with reducing such violence.
Two of the five people shot on Friday were initially admitted to Harborview Medical Center in critical condition. As of Sunday, their conditions had improved to “satisfactory.” The remaining wounded are either in stable condition or were treated at the scene.
Two of the shooting survivors were also identified as staff members of the coalition that hosts the pop-ups.
While the motive behind the shooting is still unknown, Seattle Police Chief Adrian Diaz pointed to the excessive number of illegal guns on the streets.
"Honestly this is really disturbing when you have victims that are just trying to do an outreach effort and help people out and get people on the right path, and then they get hit with a variety of different rounds being fired at them," said Diaz.
In a statement, the Boys & Girls Clubs of King County stressed that gun violence was an issue that will take a collective effort to remedy.
“Our community warriors put their lives on the line every day to ensure that the members of our community are safe. This incident has magnified the issue of gun violence in our neighborhood, and it will take ALL of us working together to combat this public health crisis. We at Boys & Girls Clubs remain committed to working with youth, community members, community partners, law enforcement, and public officials to end gun violence."
Community members have also cautioned against allowing the incident to detract from the overall positive impact the events have had on the community thus far.
New tree ordinance officially goes into effect
Seattle’s new tree ordinance officially went into effect this week.
The measure broadens protections more than ten-fold to 175,000 trees throughout the city. A previous city ordinance protected only about 17,700 trees throughout the city. Prior to the ordinance passing on May 23, Seattle’s tree ordinance protection had not been updated since 2009.
The updated ordinance mandates that removed trees must either be replaced or a fee must be paid by a property owner to plant additional trees elsewhere.
Critics of the ordinance still feel the jury is out on whether or not it will fulfill Seattle’s future climate, environmental justice and housing needs.
Marcus Harrison Green is interim editor of Real Change.
Read more of the Aug. 2-8, 2023 issue.