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News and Events

YDEKC Shared Advocacy Agenda – January 2017

POSTED ON January 6, 2017
YDEKC Shared Advocacy Agenda – January 2017
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Youth Development Executives of King County
Working to advance the youth development field
Deep Dive into Advocacy: Our Shared Agenda

YDEKC’s vision is that every young person has the opportunity and support they need to to learn, lead, connect, contribute and thrive. In this new year, let us take this opportunity to lead in advocacy. We have new challenges before us in 2017, with many competing issues. Let us move forward with the hope and energy to make a difference for children, youth and families.

We have finalized our 2017 Legislative Priorities. You can view and download our detailedAdvocacy Grid and our 2017 Washington State Advocacy Agenda here and at

Thanks for being involved with our shared advocacy over the past months. Many more opportunities coming up to have your voice heard! Use the hyperlinks below to jump to another section of our advocacy deep dive.

Thanks for reading on,
René Murry
Public Policy Manager, Youth Development Executives of King County | | 206.336.6913

King County Activity

Member Only Lunching with Leaders: Sheila Capestany & BSK Staff
Location TBA, 2/10, 11:30 to 1:00
Curious about the BSK RFP process? Enjoy lunch with Sheila Capestany, King County Strategic Adviser for Children and Youth and Best Starts for Kids, and additional BSK Staff. This event is for YDEKC Members Only. RSVP here.

Adrienne Quinn, Director of the King County Department of Community and Human Services, was a panelist at the YDEKC Annual Summit: 
Director Quinn emphasized that YDEKC was incredibly helpful in shaping BSK and getting it passed and the funds will contribute $63-68 million/year for children, youth and families. The RFPs will be coming out soon and the positions for the staff to monitor the funds 5-24 have been recently posted.

She discussed the potential for YDEKC involvement and advocacy in the implementation of funds identified in Sound Transit 3 earmarked for education.  YDEKC will be pursuing this in 2017 – see brief survey below.  Director Quinn also encouraged advocacy in lifting the 1% tax ceiling on property tax collection because it hinders King County in the funds that it can raise to meet the demand. Director Quinn concluded by saying, “if there’s no other time than this, now is the time for fixing the tax structure.”

Sound Transit 3 Funds
YDEKC is working on priorities for advocacy around Sound Transit 3 funds earmarked broadly for education. See amendment here. These funds will be coming into the system in 2018. Please provide feedback here.

Washington State Activity

Governor’s Blue Ribbon Commission
The BRC had its final meeting on 11/8/16 and unanimously recommended this report to Governor Inslee. The focus of this new department will be in prevention and promotion, and there may be an opportunity for investment in community based organizations in youth development.

The Children’s Alliance has chosen to prioritize support of the new department as one of their top 2017 Legislative priorities. YDEKC will support and monitor the progress. The Children’s Alliance and Partners for Our Children will convene short weekly calls during session to keep those interested informed. Sign up here to receive invitations to these weekly calls and email summaries.

Ostara Group Grant Opportunity
The Ostara Group is offering a grant opportunity to individuals in Washington State who want to start a new nonprofit to promote understanding, encourage compassion, and dispel stereotypes and existing nonprofits in Washington State with budgets less than $300,000 in 2015 may also apply for support of their on-going work (or new projects) that promote understanding, encourage compassion, and dispel stereotypes. More details here.

The McCleary Decision
The McCleary decision and its funding will be the primary revenue focus in 2017.  The job of advocates in Human Services will be to link arms to protect and preserve the funding for existing programs.

Social Emotional Learning Benchmarks
The SEL Benchmarks workgroup submitted their report to the Governor on October 1st. Click here to review the report. YDEKC will be advocating for the acceptance of these benchmarks and for continued support and funding of the workgroup.

Homeless Youth
There are several areas where YDEKC will play an advocacy and support role regarding homeless youth in the 2017 WA Legislative Session. We are following the lead of WACHYA (Washington Coalition for Homeless Youth Advocacy) and will be involved in the following issues:

  • Youth Consent to participate in HMIS
  • Monitoring the Housing Trust Fund
  • Expanding funds for the Homeless Youth and Stability Act
  • Seal Juvenile Records
  • Legal Financial Obligations Reform
  • Ban the Box

Have a Heart Day for Kids
United Churches of Olympia, 1/27, 9:00 to 3:00
Join the Children’s Alliance and raise your voice for kids at the State Capitol! If you would like to attend the rally and/or coordinate with your legislator, please email More info here and registration here.

Equity Rally
State Capitol, 2/20, 10:00
Join advocates from across the state to call for a fully funded education system and full funding of other critical state services. YDEKC and SOWA are exploring the idea of sending a bus of advocates and members to Olympia and need to fill it! If you would like to attend and/or plan a visit to your legislator, please email More details here.

Laurie Lippold, Director of Public Policy from Partners for Our Children, served as a panelist at the YDEKC Annual Summit and offered several thoughts on the upcoming 2017 WA Legislative Session:
Laurie felt that we will have a maintenance level of funding and that expectations for new funds should be limited.  It will be a challenge to fully fund “McCleary.”  Advocates will need to be prepared to work for new sources of revenue, such as a Capital Gains tax, which is unlikely, or at the very least tax loophole closures.

Priorities that have risen to the top, in her view, are the Blue Ribbon Commission’s recommendations for a new Children’s Department and how it can change how we serve children, youth, and families.  A key addition to the recommendations is for a new Office of Innovations and Alignment that could open the door for collaboration.

Laurie states that it is “essential that youth and youth advocates” are a part of this process. She also emphasized a new look at the connection between on intergenerational poverty, racism, institutional racism.

For more information on Partner’s for Our Children and their work:

Federal Activity

Richard Lazaro, the Seattle Metropolitan Director for Senator Patty Murray, was a panelist at our YDEKC Annual Summit. 
He was very interested in connecting with community organizations and offered to visit groups to speak to them on behalf of Senator Murray.  If you are interested in connecting with Richard, please email him here: Do mention that you are a YDEKC member when you reach out to him.

His message to our group was that the federal landscape after this election in many areas affecting children, youth and, families is unclear.  He stressed that Senator Murray will be a fierce advocate for our issues moving forward, stating, “There is no one better equipped to stand up against an empowered right than Senator Murray.”  Richard also encouraged our members to reach out to other elected officials in the Congressional Delegation.

If you are interested in more national updates regarding Children’s Issues at the Federal, please consider signing up for the newsletter for the Children’s Defense Fund:

City Level Activity

Secure Scheduling

The Rules Committee has been meeting regarding Secure Scheduling implementation. The “Access to Hours” section is the area where YDEKC and its members can be most involved regarding youth employment hours and access. Please email if you have a youth employment program and would like to attend the YDEKC planning meeting and/or the City of Seattle Rules Committee meeting.
YDEKC Planning Meeting: 1/11, 2:00 to 3:00 at 801 23rd Ave S, Small Conference Room
City of Seattle Meeting: 1/19, 9:30 to 11:30 at Central Library, Wright Room

Seattle Human Services Coalition Announcement
SHSC’s City Budget Task Force (which YDEKC participates in) wants to start the New Year by congratulating you on your successful advocacy work during the City of Seattle 2017-2018 budget process this fall. As a result of innovative ideas and advocacy, the Mayor and City Council added $8,616,059 for community health and human services in 2017 and $4,546,853 in 2018. See the full list of human services adds here.

Copyright © 2017 Youth Development Executives of King County, All rights reserved.
Youth Development Executives of King County (YDEKC) is a coalition of youth-serving organizations working together to improve outcomes for young people.