We held a workshop to share our understanding of the RIGHTS OF NATURE on May 5, 2018. Since that time, we have been working to collaborate, connect and build a coalition to support our cause. The more we unite, the louder our voices will be. Our intention is to do all we can to save the Southern Resident Killer Whales and the Salish Sea from harm.

The Southern Resident Killer Whales numbers have declined to only 74 remaining. This species is unique to our area, have a dialect all their own, and unlike other killer whales, prefer Chinook salmon which is also endangered.

In this space, we will provide a list of upcoming events to keep you informed about what some other organizations are doing. For a more thorough list and articles about the rights of nature, please join our Facebook group, Legal Rights for the Salish Sea.

Thanks for the Puget Sound Partnership for this information! We’re looking forward to your participation in the upcoming meeting of the Southern Resident Orca Task Force. The meeting takes place this week, October 17 and 18, at the Landmark Convention Center, in Tacoma.

The agenda for the meeting is here.

There are several ways you can be involved in the meeting and in Task Force deliberations:

  • Watch the meeting on TVW, Washington state’s public affairs network.
  • Review the materials on the the Task Force website and provide your comments in the online form.
  • Attend the meeting in person. Both days of the meeting are open to the public, and observers are welcome.
  • Provide public comment in writing at the meeting. A public comment box will be provided at the sign-in table for the meeting.
  • Provide oral public comment. The process for providing oral public comment is outlined below.


Because we are anticipating that many people will wish to provide public comment in person to the Task Force, the following process will be used to help ensure equity and fairness in inviting people to speak. 

  • Public comment will be heard from 5-8 pm on Wednesday, Oct. 17.  No public comment will be heard on Thursday. Oct. 18.
  • People may sign up to speak until Wednesday at 6 pm.
  • People who wish to speak will be asked to sign up based on their place of residence. They will be asked to record their name on a sign-in sheet and on a note card. The sign-in sheets and note cards will be color coded to signify the individual’s place of residence as follows: 
    • Eastern Washington counties: Adams, Asotin, Benton, Chelan, Columbia, Douglas, Ferry, Franklin, Garfield, Grant, Kittitas, Klickitat, Lincoln, Okanogan, Pend Oreille, Skamania, Spokane, Stevens, Walla Walla, Whitman, Yakima
    • Southwest Washington and coastal counties: Clark, Cowlitz, Lewis, Wahkiakum, Pacific, Grays Harbor
    • Urban Puget Sound counties: Thurston, Pierce, King, Snohomish
    • Other Puget Sound counties: Mason, Kitsap, Clallam, Jefferson, Island, San Juan, Skagit, Whatcom
    • Other states/countries

When the public comment period begins:

  • Tribal leaders/elders will be recognized first.
  • Elected officials will be recognized next.
  • Names of members of the general public will then be randomly drawn, rotating between the areas of the state listed above. Names will be drawn from the other state/other country region at the co-chairs’ discretion.

If you are called to speak, please observe the following ground rules for public comment:

  • Each speaker will be limited to 2 minutes.  No one may grant their time to another speaker. 
  • There will be lights indicating when your time is running out, and you are expected to stop when the red light indicates your time is done.

If you are not called to speak, or are attending as an observer:

  • Please do not clap for individuals who are speaking. Clapping takes time that could otherwise be used to provide more people a chance to speak. Observers may, however, show support by raising/waving their hands silently, or by standing.
  • You may submit your written comments on the form provided at the meeting and leave it in the public-comment box provided. You may also submit your comments electronically.

Those who would like to attend the meeting and require special accommodation should contact Jennifer Goodenough: email; desk phone 360-628-0050; TTY 1-800-833-6388.