Seattle’s progressive leaders fail to combat growing homelessness and drug addiction crises, despite overwhelming public concern. The latest move – Seattle City Council rejecting a bill that would enable the City Attorney’s office to prosecute drug possession and public drug use – only adds fuel to the fire. The bold but futile attempts at providing solutions, such as gift cards for drug addicts to access treatment, reflect the dire state of blue America as lawlessness and dysfunction continue to plague major cities.
Homelessness and drug addiction remain rampant in the United States, but they are particularly prominent in the northwest, where Democratic leaders are unable to properly address the problem. In Seattle, the city council recently rejected Council Bill 120586 in a 5-4 vote, which would empower the City Attorney’s office to prosecute drug possession and public drug use. As a result, drug-related offenses can only be prosecuted by the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.
Leading up to the vote, Leesa Manion, the Prosecutor for King County, wrote a letter to council members and Mayor Bruce Harrell in an effort to pass the legislation. Seattle’s City Attorney, Ann Davison, was understandably frustrated with the council’s decision, expressing her outrage at their failure to take action against the city’s soaring opioid epidemic. Consequently, Seattle remains the only city in Washington where public drug use remains legal.
The Downtown Seattle Association (DSA) highlighted the severity of the drug crisis in a statement, calling it a “public health emergency.” The DSA’s ambassador teams have administered Narcan to 91 individuals this year alone, saving countless lives. As the city tries to recover, public drug use in public spaces is hindering efforts to