In case you didn’t hear, some very generous person — not sure who because they asked to remain anonymous — pledged $500,000 to the Seattle Public Library Foundation with only one catch: the public needs to match the total.
In response, the foundation kicked off its “Help Us Make $1 Million for the Library” campaign as outlined in an article by our news partner The Seattle Times.
The $500,000 donation came in after the 2010 mid-year library cuts were announced. The donor heard about it and had a representative call to ask for ways to help. The donor was especially concerned about how budget cuts would impact the community, in particular children and families who rely on Seattle’s public libraries for so much. The donor felt this would be a powerful way to inspire others in the community to step forward and support our library system.
The foundation’s goal is to raise $500,000 to match the gift by Dec. 31, 2010. To donate, go to foundation.spl.org or call 206-386-4130.
The Web site was experiencing difficulties earlier in the week — apparently so many people visiting to make donations! — so a couple of alternatives for donating have been set up: This Seattle Library Foundation alternate site or you can call 206-386-4130.
In the wake of the deadly officer involved shooting of a wood carver last month, many in the community questioned the training methods of the Seattle Police Department. Today, SPD invited WedgwoodView and other media outlets to get a behind the scenes look at some new training techniques being put in place along with methods currently being used.
“We did talk about deploying more tasers– using less lethal force options,” said police spokesman Sgt. Sean Whitcomb.
Officer demonstrates taser techniques
Not all Seattle Police officers carry tasers, but one new step involves arming more officers with the devices. This year, SPD says taser use has actually dropped to an average of 7 incidents a month. They credit the decrease to more people knowing about tasers and the impact they can have on the human body.
“We talk people into custody the vast amount of the time,” said Officer Chris Myers.
Another new program that is already underway requires every member of SPD to take a racial profiling course, with the goal of changing the culture in the department. Verbal judo, the use of words insteads of hands and weapons, is also being taught along with an increased emphasis on deploying crisis intervention team officers to deal with people who may have mental or medical issues.
Beginning Nov. 27, the church will host the tent city for the homeless in its parking lot for 90 days, said Pastor Julie Blum in an email to the Wedgwood View. Blum said the measure passed by a super majority of the congregation.
The issue has been hotly debated in the neighborhood, including more than 60 posts in a recent Wedgwood View blog post. Neighbors living near the church, located at 10005 32nd Ave. NE, cite a host of concerns, including their fear that tent city will bring increased crime.
Blum said the church will host a community meeting to “hear and address concerns” sometime in November. She said the church will inform neighbors when the date is set.
“It is our hope and prayer that those in our neighborhood who have concerns will see what a positive experience this can be,” Blum said in her email, “and that they will use their energies to support the homeless and care for those in need.”
Proponents have praised other tent cities around the region as a humane way to help the homeless. They also say that there is little to no evidence that they result in increased crime for the neighborhoods that host them.
A murder suspect was arrested in Wedgwood this afternoon.
The man, 45, of Monroe, was arrested by Monroe police at about 12:30 p.m. in the 2700 block of NE 89th Street, according to Monroe police who were quoted by a Monroe-area newspaper, the Sky Valley Chronicle.
The online newspaper said the man is suspected in the death of Angela Pettifer, 36, whose body was found in her apartment on Aug. 15. She died of strangulation. The man has not yet been charged.
A neighbor who lives near where the arrest occurred said he believed the man was working at a Wedgwood house as a contractor. The neighbor described a lot of police activity and thought a SWAT team might have been involved. A Seattle Police spokesman said he knew nothing about the arrest.
The newspaper said the man lives in the same building where the woman lived and was found dead, the Savoy building in Monroe. The man apparently rents a business suite on the second floor, said police in a statement.
The newspaper said the Monroe Police Department has had previous contact with the man, a level one-sex offender. through monthly registered sex offender checks. The Sky Valley Chronicle story has more details and photos.