Tag: news

New Office Staff – Laura Burke!

We are excited to welcome Laura Burke as the new JLS Office Coordinator! Laura brings with her a wealth of knowledge from previous marketing and account management roles. She is the mother of two young children and brings with her a tremendous passion for the non-profit world. The new Junior League of Seattle office hours are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from 10am-5pm . Should you have specific requests, please attempt to get them in during office hours. Requests made when the office is closed will be tended to on the next day the office is open. You can reach her directly at laura.burke@jrleasgueseattle.org or by calling into the League office, during office hours. Please stop by the office to give Laura a warm welcome!

Also important to note is that Courtney Laguio has transitioned into her new part time role as our Marketing Associate for the League. We are thrilled to have Courtney focusing on true marketing efforts including driving brand awareness and helping further our work with the strategic fundraising plan. Moving forward, please transition your requests for office assistance from Courtney to Laura.

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Voting Results Are In

Thank you to all the Active members who voted as part of the General Membership Meeting. Your participation is essential to governance and growth of the League. Three important motions were up for vote including:

(1) a revised organizational structure within the Management Council,
(2) sunsetting the LIfeBooks Committee and
(3) and an increase to Membership Dues.

The revised organizational structure and sunsetting of our beloved LifeBooks committee motions passed. The motion regarding membership dues did not pass as currently written. Membership dues for the 2012-2013 League year will remain the same at $175 for Active Members, $100 for Sustaining Members, $65 for Sustaining Members over the age of 62 and $0 for Emeritus Members over the age of 79.

Active Members, your input through the voting process is a vital part of how Junior League of Seattle Leadership plan for the long-term success of the League. Your feedback is equally important. We would like to hear more from you and will be sending out a short survey to you in the near term. Please stay tuned.

Notice for All Members: Due to the snow storm that delayed the January General Meeting, the Management Council has voted to suspend the rule that Dues Notices shall be sent out the second week of February. Thank you for your understanding. Notices will be mailed shortly.

Anti-Human Trafficking Bill Passes House

From our Advocacy Committee:

Bill to combat human trafficking, focusing on online child escort ads, passes House

OLYMPIA — Today, the House of Representatives passed a bipartisan anti-trafficking bill to keep minors from being exploited through online ads for escort services such as Backpage.com. Having already passed the Senate, the bill now goes to the governor for her signature.

Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles, D—Seattle, prime sponsor of Senate Bill 6251, said, “I am ecstatic the anti-trafficking legislation passed with unanimous support today out of the House of Representatives. This makes the strongest possible statement that there should be no selling of minors online – or anywhere! I worked with the Attorney General’s Office, Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn, Seattle Councilmember Tim Burgess, King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg, Port of Seattle Commission President Gael Tarleton, former Rep. Velma Veloria, the ACLU, Allied Daily Newspapers and others to ensure this bill passes constitutional muster as well as the federal Communications Decency Act. If the bill is signed into law, it will be the first one of its kind in the country.”

“Human trafficking is a billion-dollar industry that often takes advantage of the most vulnerable members of our society – our children, and even those with developmental disabilities,” said Sen. Jerome Delvin, R-Richland, who sponsored another bill to make it a class B felony to force a developmentally-disabled person into prostitution. “We’ve accomplished a lot, but there is still a lot of work to be done. We must do everything in our power to raise awareness of these crimes, give our judicial system more authority to punish the perpetrators, and provide help for the victims.”

Backpage.com, whose parent company is The Village Voice, makes at least $22 million a year from online adult escort ads, but refuses to verify the ages of those who place the ads or are depicted in them, even though its print edition published in the Seattle Weekly requires in person age verification. This results in minors being sold online into prostitution and sex-trafficking. All state attorneys general called on Backpage.com to stop selling online adult escort ads.

Kohl-Welles’ bill would create a new offense, making it illegal to knowingly sell an escort ad that involves a minor. To avoid possible criminal charges, classified advertising companies would be motivated to try to verify ages of escorts in sex-related postings. The bill offers an affirmative defense in prosecution of advertising commercial sexual abuse of a minor if documentation is provided of the advertisers having obtained in-person age verification.

“This is great progress in our fight to protect children from those who would sexually exploit them,” said McGinn. “It is an honor to work with those who have championed this cause. I thank the House and the Senate for their leadership in this fight, particularly Sen. Kohl-Welles. I look forward to the governor’s signature and this bill becoming law in our state.”

“Washington was the first state to criminalize human trafficking and today our Legislature took another giant step by making advertisers accountable for their role in the exploitation of children,” said Burgess. “The unanimous bipartisan support for this legislation signals that we are united in our efforts to stop the horrific violence against children through coercive prostitution.”

“This legislation recognizes that the sale of children for commercial sexual abuse either online or in print is unacceptable. The Legislature has once again moved the ball forward in the fight against human trafficking,” said Satterberg.

“This is another step forward in our fight to protect the most vulnerable citizens,” said Tarleton. “When we work together, we have the power to stop trafficking.”

“This is great news! With the first amendment rights concerns addressed, this bill will be a great tool for those of us in the anti-trafficking arena to help women and girls who are victims of human trafficking,” said Veloria, who pioneered the Legislature’s anti-trafficking efforts back in 2002.

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For more information:

Alison Dempsey-Hall, Senate Democratic Communications, 360-786-7887

JLS Volunteers at Amara

National Adoption Day celebration at Amara!

Done-In-A-Day has offered some wonderful shifts through the month of November. On November 12, Junior League of Seattle members volunteered at Amara’s National Adoption Day Celebration. Our members were able to interact with children (ages 1- 11) doing arts and crafts projects, face painting, and set-up for the party. Over 100 parents, children and board members participated in this fun and successful event.

Amara works to transform the lives of vulnerable children who deserve safe, stable homes to thrive. This is a celebration of successful placements. Amara is an independent, nonprofit organization in the State of Washington that has been providing services to families and children since 1921. Throughout their history they have developed pioneering programs to meet the changing needs of our community’s children, youth, and families. Amara’s mission is to create and support stable, loving homes for vulnerable children. Their vision and wish for the future is “A Home for Every Child.” Amara’s aim to transfer the lives of vulnerable children by helping provide them with safe, stable homes fits into JLS’ focus area of Disenfranchised Youth.

Our Amara service shift was managed by Kate Chiarella and Allie Okner.

JLS Volunteers at Amara

Human trafficking: Washington Works to Stop Demand

The key to stopping forced labor and sex slavery – also known as human trafficking – is to stop demand.

The Seattle area ranks among the top in the world for sexual exploitation of minors, according to Robin Schildmeyer of Genesis Project, an organization dedicated to protecting young women victimized by human trafficking. The organization provides a 24-hour safe house, and estimates the average age of entry into prostitution is 13. Many of the victims are runaways with a history of sexual abuse, drug and alcohol abuse, and poverty.