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Kika Kaui had options and time at the outset of 2020.
Seconds into a conversation, Toni Lodge taps into humor. She’s a natural storyteller, too. But other clues about Lodge soon surface, such as her tenacity and passion for community when talking about the past 30 years of her work in Spokane.
The Native Project celebrated its 30th anniversary during the steady drenching rain that fell in Spokane Friday, but that didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits. What couldn’t be put under tents moved indoors, and the party went on.
Last year saw the highest number of officer-involved shootings in more than two decades. Eight people were shot by county law enforcement officers in 2017, and seven were shot by Spokane police officers – the most for the department since at least 1995, according to department data.
It’s not the amount of copper taken in a theft at the NATIVE Project building last week or the loss of one of the building’s heat sources that have Executive Director Toni Lodge concerned. It’s the professional nature of the job.
U.S. Sen. Patty Murray challenged her Republican counterparts Tuesday to embrace the Senate version of the Violence Against Women Act, saying the narrower House version leaves out key provisions that would help protect another 30 million women from domestic violence. Murray, a Democrat from Western Washington, hosted several victims of abusive relationships at the NATIVE Project in West Central Spokane.
Less than two years after instituting a swimming fee for kids, the Spokane Park Board may double the rate to $2. Park officials say the fee hike won’t come close to covering the cost of operating the pools, but they could help prevent cuts to other park programs.
Less than a year after breaking ground, the NATIVE Project's new health care facility is up and running in the heart of Spokane's West Central neighborhood. The $3.9 million expansion at 1803 W. Maxwell Ave. combines the nonprofit agency's behavioral health services and health clinic under one roof, providing 18,000 square feet of space in service to low-income residents – whether or not they are American Indian, whether or not they are insured.