King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert (file photo)

King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert (file photo)

Councilmember calls for safety emergency declaration after county courthouse violence

Also proposed is legislation to improve courthouse security measures.

King County Councilmember Kathy Lambert on Aug. 11 called on Executive Dow Constantine to declare deteriorating safety conditions around the King County Courthouse an emergency.

The call for an emergency declaration follows a demonstration organized by courthouse employees to bring attention to growing safety concerns in and around the courthouse and in City Hall Park.

“Nobody should be threatened by verbal, physical, or sexual violence in their workplace,” Lambert said. “If Seattle is not going to step up to make City Hall Park and the surrounding areas safer for county employees, jurors and the general public, then we must take emergency action.”

In addition to an emergency declaration, Lambert is preparing legislation to address serious concerns raised by members of the courthouse security team. Lambert said recent news reports indicate that security staff were speaking anonymously out of fear of retaliation and highlighted policies implemented by the executive branch that hinder security in their ability to do their job effectively.

The legislation will be aimed at providing the tools and resources necessary for security staff to adequately protect themselves, employees and the public.

The proposed legislation will:

– Provide Narcan and Naloxone to each team member to render aid in the event of a nearby drug overdose or their own personal exposure.

– Equip security staff with tourniquets and first-aid kits.

– Train and equip security staff with batons, handcuffs and tasers.

– Establish a safe process for all county employees to provide recommendations for improving safety without retaliation.

“As was said at the rally a few days ago, ‘Enough is enough!’ The issues of security need to be fully transparent. This legislation is a good first step to giving security staff the tools they need to protect themselves and the public,” Lambert said. “No county employee should be afraid of retaliation for speaking up for safer working conditions. If you do not feel it is safe for you to talk to your manager, department leadership, or any other executive employee, then you can call me.”


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@kentreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.kentreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in News

t
Kent School Board bans fellow member from labor contract talks

Controversial 3-2 vote singles out Donald Cook because his wife teaches in the district

Ex-Seattle Seahawks lineman Chad Wheeler received a prison sentence of six years and nine months for assaulting his girlfriend in 2021 at their Kent apartment. COURTESY FILE PHOTO, Seattle Seahawks
Judge sentences ex-Seahawks lineman Chad Wheeler to prison

Receives sentence of six years and nine months for 2021 Kent assault of his girlfriend

t
Vehicle strikes, injures two juvenile pedestrians in Kent

Police say the juveniles ran across SE 256th Street on Feb. 28 while traffic had the green light

Public Health – Seattle & King County staff administer a COVID-19 vaccine to a local emergency responder. COURTESY FILE PHOTO, Public Health-Seattle & King County
Kent COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic to close at end of March

Still time to get free shots before federal funding for clinic expires

t
Kent Police catch Soos Creek Elementary School burglary suspect

Officers arrest 23-year-old Kent woman after foot pursuit in Feb. 26 incident

t
Kent Police Blotter: Feb. 14-22

Incidents include vehicle robbery, machete threat, teen shot and injured

t
Medical examiner identifies pedestrian, 56, killed on Kent’s West Hill

Bruce Brooks died from multiple blunt force injuries in collision with vehicle on Pacific Highway S.

t
Kent Salary Commission proposes $9,132 pay hike for mayor this year

Annual pay to jump to $212,088; residents can offer input about increase at March 14 meeting

t
Trooper shot in Kent ‘lucky to be alive,’ according to sources

Tourniquet had to be applied to his leg to save his life

Donald Cook. COURTESY PHOTO, Kent School District
Kent School Board member Cook focus of proposed resolution | Update

Measure would form Labor Policy Committee that excludes Cook due to potential conflict

t
Seattle male pedestrian killed in Kent after collision with vehicle

Reportedly stepped into lanes Feb. 26 in 24400 block of Pacific Highway South

t
Kent Police make robbery arrests after West Hill carjacking

Vehicle reportedly taken near Pacific Highway South; pursuit ends in Auburn