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Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna vaccines safe and effective for children as young as 6-months old
Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna vaccines safe and effective for children as young as 6-months old

The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup Sunday completed its review of the federal process and has unanimously concluded that the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines are safe and effective for children as young as 6 months old. The Workgroup provided its confirmation to the governors of Washington, California, Nevada and Oregon this afternoon.

The Moderna two-dose vaccine series and the Pfizer three-dose vaccine series are now available to children as young as 6 months old. The Washington State Department of Health last week said once vaccines were approved they will begin supplying healthcare providers with vaccines for children ages 6 months to 4 years.

On Friday, June 17, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) authorized the use of the vaccines in children as young as 6 months old, and the CDC affirmed that decision on Saturday. The Workgroup reviewed the federal decisions on Saturday and affirmed them today.

The Workgroup thoroughly reviewed safety and efficacy data for the vaccines. The Workgroup found that completion of either vaccine series produced antibody levels similar to those achieved in individuals aged 16-25 years. Observed vaccine reactions among infants aged 6-12 months and children aged 1 through 5 years were consistent with reactions to other vaccines routinely recommended for these age groups.

The Workgroup concluded that the benefits of completing either vaccine series substantially outweigh any known or likely risks. Immunization can be expected to reduce the numbers of COVID-19-related serious illnesses, hospitalizations, and deaths in young children while facilitating their participation in normal educational, social and recreational activities.

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Classifieds 6.22.22
Classifieds 6.22.22
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Classifieds 6.15.22
Classifieds 6.15.22
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Legal Public Notice
Legal Public Notice
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Legal Public Notice
Legal Public Notice
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Classifieds 6.8.22
Classifieds 6.8.22
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Children Ages 5-11 Eligible for Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Boosters
Children Ages 5-11 Eligible for Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Boosters

Booster doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine are now available for children ages 5-11.

The expansion of booster eligibility comes as COVID-19 cases are continuing to steadily rise across the county. The myth that COVID-19 is always a mild disease in children is untrue. Since the beginning of the pandemic, more than 4.8 million children ages 5-11 have been diagnosed with COVID-19, with 15,000 hospitalized and 180 deceased.

The Washington State Department of Health recommends children ages 5-11 should receive a booster dose five months after completing their primary vaccine series of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Immunocompromised children should receive their booster at least three months after their primary series.

More Policies Needed
to Stop Gun Violence

The violent tragedy at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, once again highlights the overwhelming need for policies to reduce gun violence. As the Associated Press reports, it also highlights how state leaders in Washington stand in contrast to Congress and Republican leaders.

During the past several years, Washington voters and the Legislature have passed policies to reduce and prevent gun violence related to domestic violence, suicide, community violence and mass shootings. Policies include universal background checks, an increase in the purchasing age for semi-automatic weapons, liability for people who don't secure their firearms, and extreme risk protection orders - sometimes called "red flag laws."

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Classifieds 6.1.22
Classifieds 6.1.22
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Federal report highlights historical injustices of Native boarding schools
Photo Courtesy Washington State Archives - American Indian children pictured in a field in front of the Chehalis Boarding and Day School in Oakville in 1885.
Federal report highlights historical injustices of Native boarding schools

Last Wednesday, a national investigative report was released by the U.S. Department of the Interior identifying more than 400 federally-run schools for Native American children, including 15 in Washington state. Beginning in the 1880s and continuing into the 1960s, federal officials forcibly removed children from their families and placed them with educators who suppressed the use of Native language and any learning of Native cultures and beliefs. This included changing their Native names, cutting their hair, wearing uniforms and more.

The report is the first step for the Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative launched by Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland last June following stunning revelations of hundreds of unmarked graves at Indian residential schools in Canada.

"The federal and state governments of the United States have dealt tremendous loss and suffering to the Native and Indigenous people throughout generations, including the horrific and systematic erasure of their culture and their children," Inslee said in response to the report. "It is difficult to confront such hard truths about our past, but it is necessary for healing and progress. Washington state stands ready to do what we can to acknowledge the trauma and harm these schools caused, and uplift the efforts of those who fight to ensure the many Tribal languages, cultures and knowledge persist and flourish."

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Classifieds 5.25.22
Classifieds 5.25.22
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Federal report highlights historical injustices of Native boarding schools
Photo Courtesy Washington State Archives - American Indian children pictured in a field in front of the Chehalis Boarding and Day School in Oakville in 1885.
Federal report highlights historical injustices of Native boarding schools

Last Wednesday, a national investigative report was released by the U.S. Department of the Interior identifying more than 400 federally-run schools for Native American children, including 15 in Washington state. Beginning in the 1880s and continuing into the 1960s, federal officials forcibly removed children from their families and placed them with educators who suppressed the use of Native language and any learning of Native cultures and beliefs. This included changing their Native names, cutting their hair, wearing uniforms and more.

The report is the first step for the Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative launched by Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland last June following stunning revelations of hundreds of unmarked graves at Indian residential schools in Canada.

"The federal and state governments of the United States have dealt tremendous loss and suffering to the Native and Indigenous people throughout generations, including the horrific and systematic erasure of their culture and their children," Inslee said in response to the report. "It is difficult to confront such hard truths about our past, but it is necessary for healing and progress. Washington state stands ready to do what we can to acknowledge the trauma and harm these schools caused, and uplift the efforts of those who fight to ensure the many Tribal languages, cultures and knowledge persist and flourish."

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Classifieds 5.18.22
Classifieds 5.18.22
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Photo Courtesy Gov. Inslee Staff - Jennifer Martinez, PPAA\'s board president who spoke of her experience as a patient and soon-to-be-parent. Hundreds of people attended the press conference and rally at Kerry Park in Seattle.
"We are going to fight like hell" - State leaders vow to protect access to abortion

This (May 2-9) a draft decision of the Supreme Court of the United States indicated its intent to overturn the country's decades-old constitutional right to an abortion guaranteed by the 1973 ruling in Roe v. Wade.

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Classifieds 5.11.22
Classifieds 5.11.22
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Scot Industries Notice of Public Hearing
Scot Industries Notice of Public Hearing
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COVID-19, construction fatalities among largest groups of fallen workers in state
COVID-19, construction fatalities among largest groups of fallen workers in state

Every year the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries hosts a memorial ceremony for workers who lost their lives on the job.

L&I records show 26 people passed away in 2021 after contracting COVID-19 while working in hospitals, prisons, manufacturing jobs, or other workplaces. Another 15 workers died following long battles with other occupational illnesses. This makes COVID-19 fatalities the highest work-related deaths for the second year in a row.

A total of 106 fallen workers were lost. They were all honored in L&I's annual Worker Memorial Day this week.

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Classifieds 5.4.22
Classifieds 5.4.22
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Classifieds 4.27.22
Classifieds 4.27.22
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I-5 bridge project over Nisqually River highlights rapidly changing flood risks, ecological impacts and regional growth
I-5 bridge project over Nisqually River highlights rapidly changing flood risks, ecological impacts and regional growth

Chairman Willie Frank III and the Nisqually Indian Tribe hosted Senator Maria Cantwell, Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland and Gov. Jay Inslee recently for a boat tour on the Nisqually River to see the aging Nisqually Bridge across Interstate 5. They then joined a roundtable conversation with local elected leaders from Pierce and Thurston counties and representatives of the Washington State Department of Transportation and South Sound Military & Community Partnership.

In 2018, the state's transportation budget included $2.25 million for a corridor planning study of I-5 between Tumwater and Mounts Road. The 2022 Move Ahead Washington package recently passed by the Legislature and signed by Inslee includes $75 million to advance project work in the corridor.

The Nisqually Indian Tribe has been an active partner throughout the planning process, including partnering with Washington State Department of Transportation to have the U.S. Geologic Survey complete a hydrologic study of the Nisqually River related to I-5.

"The aging Nisqually Bridge across I-5 no longer meets the needs of this quickly-growing region, and is also altering the ecological health of the area. As we look to the future, the Nisqually Tribe, local, state and federal leaders are partnering together so we can seize this opportunity to restore the vibrancy of this ecosystem and ensure a more resilient transportation corridor," Inslee posted on Instagram.

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Classifieds 4.20.22
Classifieds 4.20.22
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Classifieds 4.13.22
Classifieds 4.13.22
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Governor signs 303 bills; $3.5 million in medical supplies to Ukraine
Governor signs 303 bills; $3.5 million in medical supplies to Ukraine

Legislators approved 303 bills during the 60-day session that ended March 10. The action then turns to the governor's office where he has 20 days to sign or veto legislation. This week he wrapped up signing several dozen bills, including several at signing events with communities and legislators.

Some bills from the Legislature are intended for fun. On Monday, Inslee signed a bill sponsored by Rep. John Lovick establishing pickleball as the state's official sport. Inslee and Lovick were joined by dozens of pickleball enthusiasts on Bainbridge Island where the sport was invented in 1965.

Most bills, however, bills tackle serious and urgent issues, such as the bipartisan bill to deter theft of catalytic converters. The bill was sponsored by Rep. Cindy Ryu. Inslee also signed legislation requested by Attorney General Bob Ferguson and sponsored by Rep. Debra Lekanoff to create the nation's first alert system to help locate missing Indigenous people.

Among the dozens of other bills the governor signed last week:

  • A bill sponsored by Rep. Liz Berry and promoted by firefighters that makes Washington the first state to phase out toxic PFAS "forever chemicals" in many common products by 2025.
  • An anti-hazing bill known as the "Sam's Law" sponsored by Rep. Mari Leavitt that would require colleges and universities to do more to prevent and report incidents of hazing.
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Classifieds 4.6.22
Classifieds 4.6.22
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Move Ahead Washington plan takes a completely new approach to transportation in Washington state
Move Ahead Washington plan takes a completely new approach to transportation in Washington state

On Friday at events in Mukilteo and Tacoma, Gov. Jay Inslee signed several climate and clean energy jobs bills, including the historic new 16-year Move Ahead Washington transportation package.

The governor was joined in Mukilteo by Tulalip Tribes Vice Chair-elect Misty Napeahi, Washington State Department of Transportation Secretary Roger Millar, Sen. Marko Liias, Rep. Jake Fey, Sen. Joe Nguyen, Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon, Rep. Alex Ramel, and Rep. Davina Duerr.

In Tacoma, Inslee was joined by Chairman of the Puyallup Tribe Bill Sterud, Pierce Transit CEO Mike Griffus, Sen. Marko Liias, Rep. Jake Fey, and Rep. Joe Fitzgibbon.

The Move Ahead Washington transportation package is unlike any other in the state's history. It lays the foundation for a massive shift from simply building more lanes to moving people via cleaner, more efficient transportation options.

"Transportation is our state's largest source of greenhouse gas emissions. There is no way to talk about climate change without talking about transportation," Inslee said during the Friday morning signing event. "This package will move us away from the transportation system our grand-parents imagined and towards the transportation system our grand-children dream of."

The Move Ahead Washington package focuses an increased share of funding on maintenance and preservation of existing roads and bridges than prior packages, and includes major projects such as the replacement of the I-5 bridge across the Columbia River. But the clear distinction is how it directs a significant share of investments towards climate and clean transportation. These investments are possible thanks to revenue from the state's cap-and-invest program that places a price on carbon pollution.

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Classifieds 3.30.22
Classifieds 3.30.22
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