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A Message From Mayor Victoria Woodards and City Manager Elizabeth Pauli on Recent Events at the Northwest Detention Center

A Message From Mayor Victoria Woodards and City Manager Elizabeth Pauli on Recent Events at the Northwest Detention Center

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 16, 2019

 

MEDIA CONTACTS

Tanisha Jumper, Media and Communications, tjumper@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-5152
Maria Lee, Media and Communications, maria.lee@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-2054

 

A Message From Mayor Victoria Woodards and City Manager Elizabeth Pauli
on Recent Events at the Northwest Detention Center


The news of Saturday’s tragedy at the Northwest Detention Center has rapidly spread around the world, raising many questions, and reflecting that community members here in Tacoma care deeply about each other’s safety and wellbeing. 

While we work to keep the lines of communication open, a thorough investigation into the facts of this case will take time. We are partnering with other agencies in this work, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Regardless of the circumstances, every loss of life in our city is cause to grieve. 

Increasingly divisive national rhetoric, reports of intensifying U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement actions, and the presence of a detention center in Tacoma that is privately operated under contract with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement create tensions that impact us all. Our strength as a community, however, lies in our ability to come together, to engage in open and honest communication, and to support one another throughout difficult circumstances. As you continue to use your voices to elevate matters of local, regional and national significance, including those issues relating to immigrant and refugee families, please know that we continue to listen.

Public safety is one of our paramount responsibilities as your local government, and it is key to quality of life for each and every one of us. As part of our responsibility for public safety, we continue to have the deepest respect for the difficult job of our law enforcement officers as they work each day to keep all community members safe. We continue to support the City’s police officers as they protect and serve all of Tacoma’s residents, workers and visitors. 

While the details of this specific case continue to emerge, we must not be divided in our goal to prioritize the safety and wellbeing of each person who lives and works in, or visits, Tacoma. We ask you to join us in this goal. As City leaders, we rely each day on community voices, law enforcement, friends, neighbors and families to raise awareness of issues that impact personal safety. Conversations as a community will inform our work as we continue to process this tragedy, prioritize public safety, provide equitable access to City services, and advance positive outcomes for all members of the community.

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