Remembering 9/11, the latest on COVID, new vaccine verification system, Governor’s outdoor mask mandate, climate change news...

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Banner image showing King County Councilmember Jeanne Kohl-Welles.

September 9, 2021

firefighters with flag on 9-11

Dear Friends and Neighbors,  

Virtually everyone over the age of 30 or so remembers where they were on September 11, 2001.  I was attending a Technology Alliance conference with a lot of other elected officials held at Sleeping Lady Lodge near Leavenworth.  I remember the utter shock I felt as I watched the second plane hit the south tower while most of us were crowded around a television. Needless to say, the conference was immediately ended.

After returning to Seattle, my husband Alex and I went to Westlake Park in downtown Seattle and I spoke to the spontaneous gathering. So many spoke about how we felt with the realization that actions that had been unthinkable the day before had just re-made our reality.  The lives lost, the courageous first responders, the destruction and disbelief.  Similar to the shock of the attack on Pearl Harbor, we were suddenly reminded that geographical distance cannot protect us.

I believe that now, twenty years later, we are once again collectively grappling with the challenges and realities of our linked, interdependent global society.  Wuhan, China is a long way from Seattle and our current enemy is invisible, yet our society, economy and planet continue to be transformed by this virus. 

And the virus itself continues to transform, forcing us to continually adapt our strategies for dealing with it.  However, two facts still hold: Vaccines are extremely effective at preventing hospitalization and death, and masks (well-fitting and worn correctly) are very effective at preventing the virus from spreading.  If you have not yet received the vaccine, please do so as soon as possible.  They are safe, effective and free.  

I’m including below the latest news on COVID, including the Governor’s new mandate, the County’s plans for vaccine verification requirements, the Delta and Mu variants, booster shots and more.  

As always, I would like to hear from you. You can call me at 206-477-1004 or you can reach me by email at   

All the best and I hope you are staying safe.