by Kirsten Johnson
The city of Mukilteo has issued a proclamation establishing February as African American History Month.
The proclamation states that “freedom can never be taken for granted” and that “African Americans are still trying to claim rights long denied through centuries of struggle.”
The city “calls upon all residents to remember the words of Dr. King that ‘injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,’” the proclamation states.
Since the 1970s, the month of February has been designated nationally as Black History Month to celebrate the history and achievements of African Americans.
City of Mukilteo Executive Assistant Nancy Passovoy said that the proclamation is issued each year because “it’s important to (Mayor Jennifer Gregerson) and “it’s just the right thing to do.”
“Those of us who work in the city really believe in diversity and equity for all,” Passovoy said. “We’re a welcoming community, we value all people and our African American brothers and sisters have had a struggle. It’s important to remember all they’ve gone through and to try to lift them up.”
Passovoy noted that Mukilteo is a very diverse community with people from all over the world.
Data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows that the population of Mukilteo is about 70 percent white, 19 percent Asian, 2 percent Black or African American, 6 percent Hispanic or Latino, .1 percent Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander, .6 percent American Indian/Alaskan Native and 5 percent two or more races.
The city has in place its Title VI anti-discrimination policy to “make sure we’re following federal and state guidelines and to make sure we’re not discriminating in our workplace and how we conduct business,” Passovoy said.
“It’s just really important to embrace diversity and as part of that, we’re looking for a diverse population of candidates to hire so that the city staff represents the community,” Passovoy said.
Black History Month was started in 1926 by historian Carter G. Woodson. Woodson chose the month of February to coincide with Abraham Lincoln’s birthday on Feb. 12, and Frederick Douglass’ birthday on Feb. 14. Both are largely considered important abolitionist figures in American history.