The following statement was released Tuesday by Cherika Carter, Campaign Manager for the Washington Fairness Coalition:
(Nov. 12, 2019) — On September 12, 2019, we launched the Washington Fairness Coalition, a coalition of community, labor, business and advocacy groups, all working to make sure I-1000 was upheld as law. We are proud of the campaign we ran to bring fairness and opportunity to Washington State. We not only built a durable coalition and resilient relationships, but we centered this campaign around equity and worked to uplift the communities most impacted.
After a week of ballot counting it is clear that I-1000 will fall just short of approval. With nearly 50 percent of voters voting to Approve I-1000, it’s clear that many Washingtonians want a better, more fair and equitable state with opportunities for all. We are immensely grateful to everyone who cast their ballot to restore a level playing field.
We are incredibly proud and grateful for all the support that coalesced around this measure in a few short weeks — from individuals, civil rights organizations and equity advocates to veterans and women’s groups to unions and businesses, large and small. Together we built a strong, inclusive coalition that is only gaining momentum. Referendum 88 helped to catalyze a movement committed to positive change and it ignited important conversations about how structural racism and sexism continue to serve as barriers to access to opportunity in our state.
Finally, we want to thank members of the Washington State Legislature who stepped up and approved I-1000 into law this past spring. Not only did their vote honor the nearly 400,000 Washingtonians who signed petitions last year demanding action, but women, veterans, minority communities and Washingtonians young and old who need and deserve equal opportunity in government hiring, contracting, and education.
While this campaign may be over, the work of our coalition will continue.