CW: This report contains some content that documents racial threats and violence which may be disturbing or upsetting.
This is a companion piece to The Searchlight Review’s report on the July 5th Lynden March for Black Lives, published on August 14, 2020. It focuses on the events leading up to the march held in Lynden, Washington, and the pro-police/pro-USA counter protest which was organized in response to the march, both of which were held on July 5, 2020.
This report provides a detailed accounting of what occurred during the Lynden March for Black Lives held in Lynden, Washington, and the pro-police/pro-USA counter-protest which was organized in response to the march, both of which were held on July 5, 2020.
A second report will be published soon , focusing on the events leading up to the “Lynden March for Black Lives” held in Lynden, Washington, and the pro-police/pro-USA counter-protest which was organized in response to the march, both of which were held on July 5, 2020.
[Editor’s note: This story has been updated on September 23, 2019 to reflect the fact that sometime today (September 23, 2019) the “Sheriff Bill Elfo” profile appears to have been removed from the We Speak social media platform. Now, when searching on We Speak by entering the former profile name, “Sheriff Bill Elfo,” that particular profile no longer produces any search results. In addition to this new development, it appears that the Re-elect Sheriff Bill Elfo Facebook page has removed the post declaring that “We Speak is running most of Re-elect Sheriff Bill Elfo’s campaign,” which had been posted on that Facebook page on Thursday, September 19, 2019, and which is referenced in this article with an accompanying screenshot photo.]
Whatcom County Sheriff Bill Elfo’s campaign for the November 5, 2019 general election recently urged the sheriff’s supporters to join We Speak, a new social media platform created for Christian conservatives and founded by Ray Gilbride and his wife, Danielle Gilbride, who reside in Bellingham, Washington.
Whatcom County Council Chair Rud Browne announced in a press release on Tuesday, May 21, 2019, that he had withdrawn from the 40th Legislative District (LD) state Senate race. Browne, who resides in Bellingham, Washington, had filed to run for state Senate on Friday, May 17 at 3:44 PM, according to the listed 2019 candidate filings posted on the Whatcom County Auditor’s website.
Bellingham, Washington, known for its unofficial nickname, “The City of Subdued Excitement,” is also known for its fairly subdued winter weather — not too cold, not much snow, but with a pretty steady stream of rain. Sunday, February 3, 2019, brought unusually frigid temperatures to Bellingham and its surrounding county. Those below freezing temperatures were accompanied by several inches of snow that fell on that Super Bowl Sunday, along with power outages which impacted thousands of Whatcom County residents. Local schools were closed the following day due to the snow.
The November 6, 2018, general election race for 40th Legislative District State Representative Position 1, features Democratic candidate Debra Lekanoff, versus Republican candidate Michael Petrish. Parts of both Whatcom County and Skagit County in Washington state make up the 40th Legislative District (LD). The district encompasses southwestern Whatcom County, northeastern Skagit County, and San Juan County.
In May of this year, some well known Whatcom County conservative stalwarts teamed up with one of Washington state’s most infamous tax opponents, Tim Eyman, and newly dubbed “Master Provocateur” Glen Morgan, to launch the “Full Contact Activism Tour.” The tour visited eight cities throughout the state.
In a full courtroom in Whatcom County District Court on Tuesday morning, June 19, 2018, attendees heard Judge Pro Tempore Dave Cottingham agree to Sarbanand Farms’ request that the $73,000 penalty it was assessed by the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I), be reduced by half, to $36,500. The proceedings that day serve to raise significant doubt as to the ability of state and local agencies to take actions that would adequately identify and prevent abuse of farm workers employed by farms under the H-2A visa program.
This is a follow-up story with additional details related to my March 25, 2018 article. That article had reported on what was known back at that time about Washington state Senator Doug Ericksen’s March 21, 2018 visit to Meridian High School (MHS), as he described it, to talk with students about gun violence and school safety. Ericksen, a Republican from Ferndale, Washington, is running for re-election to the state Senate this year.
Adding to the list of the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries’ (L&I) inspections of Sarbanand Farms in Sumas, Washington, in 2017, is another safety and health inspection I learned more about on Wednesday, April 25. Inspection number 317946364 was conducted by L&I’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) after being initiated back in June 2017, although it was not mentioned in L&I’s February 1, 2018 press release announcing its findings from investigations at Sarbanand Farms which the department initiated in August 2017.
The DOSH inspection initiated in June 2017 did find that Sarbanand Farms had committed a serious violation involving an employee injury.
Here is what I know about Washington state Senator Doug Ericksen’s (R-Ferndale) March 21, 2018, visit to Meridian High School, according to my March 22 phone call with Meridian High School Principal Derek Forbes.
On January 6, 2018, Republican state Senator Douglas Ericksen found himself on the front page of The Bellingham Herald, and the subject of headlines in numerous other news publications later that day and over the weekend, for having been appointed to the position of senior adviser to the regional administrator in the Environmental Protection Agency’s Region 10 office, in Seattle, Washington. Ericksen tried to quash that news by saying the story was false, and by calling those press reports “erroneous.” Local reporter Kie Relyea, first broke the story on January 5, in the online version of The Bellingham Herald.