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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.
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.
An organizer of Spokane’s annual march commemorating Martin Luther King Jr. criticized community leaders Tuesday for not opening an honest dialogue about race issues after last month’s march was targeted with a bomb. “What do we say to our kids?” said Ivan Bush, a longtime civil rights leader in Spokane. “What do we say to them about that day when a community stood up with a hump in the back and didn’t make a real statement? What do we say to them? How do we go back and face them and talk about the greatness of a community? We can’t in a legitimate way. We did not when the time was there. I’m hurt. I’m pained, and I’m full of rage.”
Washington state is suspending grants that enable community clinics to provide health care to about 300,000 uninsured patients. Suspension of the program was announced this week by the Washington State Health Care Authority as part of across-the-board reductions in state spending.
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.