Seattle -Councilmember Kshama Sawant (District 3, Central Seattle), working people, and anti-war activists have won a historic victory in forcing Democrats on the Seattle City Council to pass a resolution calling for a cease-fire in Gaza, humanitarian aid to the Palestinians, and release of all hostages. The vote was 6 yes, 0 no, and 3 abstentions. “This victory is a testament to the growing strength of the global anti-war movement,” Sawant said. “In the last weeks, millions have demonstrated in solidarity with the Palestinians and against the brutal Israeli state. In addition to huge and growing street demonstrations, workers have refused to handle Israeli war materiel in the ports of Barcelona, Spain; Salerno, Italy; and in Belgium.
After a decade on Seattle City Council, socialist Kshama Sawant is declining to seek reelection and will instead launch a new national coalition called Workers Strike Back this March in cities around the US. The goal of Workers Strike Back is to build an independent workers’ movement that fights for the interests of the working class, rather than the agenda of either corporate party. This coalition will organize for a $ 25 an hour minimum wage, build grassroots labor unions, fight for a clean energy transition, battle anti-trans and anti-LGBTQ legislation, and more.
A SeaTac city judge abruptly ended the disorderly-conduct trial of Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant and two others Friday, dismissing all charges against the three defendants, who were arrested during a minimum-wage demonstration. The defense didn’t need to call witnesses and the jury didn’t deliberate because Judge Ann Danieli terminated the trial moments after prosecutors rested their case. Danieli agreed with a defense lawyer, who argued the prosecutors had failed to present sufficient evidence that Sawant, the Rev. John Helmiere and airport worker Socrates Bravo engaged in disorderly conduct by intentionally blocking traffic. Testimony from police officers showed that it was police who blocked traffic on International Boulevard in the minutes before Sawant, Helmiere and Bravo were arrested, the judge said.
Seattle City Councilwoman Kshama Sawant was arrested after she failed to disperse during a protest outside of Alaska Airlines headquarters in SeaTac Wednesday evening. Sawant was one of four people arrested when they stayed in the middle of a street at a protest calling for a $15 minimum wage for all workers at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The other people arrested were a cargo handler, a former airport worker and a church reverend. Sawant said before the protest started that it was her “obligation as a public servant” to exercise civil disobedience and risk arrest. In a statement issued Wednesday, Alaska Airlines said it supports fair-wage jobs and voluntarily increased wages in April for more than 1,000 vendor employees.