Politics & Elections

Governor Inslee responds to concerns of police responses to protests

by Luke Putvin | Lynnwood Times Staff

At his June 3 press conference, Governor Jay Inslee addressed several questions from members of the media regarding recent protests across the state. One question was asked about Inslee’s response to alleged inappropriate police actions in the past few days.

“I’ve seen a few things that are troublesome and need to have answers,” Inslee said. He emphasized the need for a full investigation into each alleged situation to see if something was awry. “I recognize… that these are very tense situations that law enforcement works in.”

Inslee mentioned that law enforcement has a difficult job, but they also have high expectations and said that most of the time those expectations are fulfilled.

The governor recently had a call with minority-owned businesses and members from the Black Caucus and spoke about having a robust discussion about issues the protests are addressing. He said that he has been listening to people, community, law enforcement and many others. “I’m confident good ideas will come out of this,” Inslee said.

Inslee also said that protesters he listened to said they wanted to keep the message of justice and prevent “mayhem, anarchy and violence.” These diminish the importance of the overall message, according to Inslee.

In response to a question about not hearing much from Inslee about social distancing at these protests, the governor said that it has been heartening to see many wearing masks at these protests and that he is “hopeful people remain committed both to justice and survival against COVID-19.”

Additionally, Inslee was asked how he reconciled recommending individuals stay home while also supporting protesters.

“Both protests were allowed,” Inslee said, in reference to the protests against the Stay Home, Stay Healthy order as well as the current protests. He said that, though he hopes everyone tries to find six feet apart from each other, this has not been followed on both sides.

“This just can’t succeed in bringing more justice and peace to our society if everybody gets in their trenches and their bunkers and people think of this as a team sport with two teams in opposition,” Inslee added. He emphasized his hopes to have people continuing to have a strong expression to bring justice to society while also not allowing violence.

Inslee concluded by thanking Washingtonians and saying that he was trying to remember a time when there has been a confluence of this many events. 

“Please be peaceful, demand change and wash your hands,” he said.

For more information, visit www.governor.wa.gov

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