City Files Legal Challenge to Block the Democratic Rights of Voters: Mayor Condon takes unilateral action in an attempt to keep the Worker Bill of Rights initiative from being voted on by the people of Spokane.
Envision Worker Rights, the organization that qualified the Worker Bill of Rights (Initiative 2015-2) for the November ballot, has been legally challenged by the City of Spokane. The City is attempting to block the duly-qualified citizen initiative from a vote of the people of Spokane.
“The mayor’s challenge to the Worker Bill of Rights is a direct challenge to the constitutional rights of the people of Spokane to the initiative process. By taking this action, the mayor is undermining the democratic rights of the people of Spokane in favor of corporate interests that oppose the measure,” says Kai Huschke, Campaign Coordinator for Envision Worker Rights.
“The mayor is attempting to interfere with democratic rights secured in the Washington Constitution,” Huschke added. “Any political pressure the mayor is getting from corporate interests like the Downtown Spokane Partnership and the Spokane Homebuilders Association needs to take a backseat to the people’s right to vote.”
The Worker Bill of Rights would amend the city’s charter to recognize the right to a family wage when working for a large employer, the right to equal pay for equal work, the right not be wrongfully terminated, and that corporate powers shall be subordinate to people’s rights.
In July, the Spokane City Council voted to place the Worker Bill of Rights on the November ballot. The City Council has not voted to sanction the lawsuit.
The lawsuit has been brought by the mayor’s office. The City has also hired the Seattle law firm K&L Gates to represent them.
No court date has been set.