Our Strategies

Why You Should Get Involved

Whole Washington has run three initiative campaigns and introduced three bills into the legislature for universal single-payer healthcare, in an effort that has brought together hundreds if not thousands of activists in support. Though we have yet to achieve our goal of universal healthcare for Washington residents, our efforts have gained the support of legislators, built an impressive network of grassroots organizations, raised tens of thousands of dollars, and gathered hundreds of thousands of signatures.

Together, we build the campaign of our dreams -- one with the leadership, movement support, donor resources, and political capital to make universal healthcare a reality.

Passing the Washington Health Trust

Whole Washington's proposal, the Washington Health Trust, aims to establish a nonprofit public health insurance plan that reimburses all medical expenses, making healthcare free for all Washington residents at point of use. We pursue both legislative and citizen-initiative strategies to make this a reality.

State Legislature Strategy

From January to March, our focus is to utilize signature counts to influence legislators into passing universal healthcare.

SB 5335 establishes the Washington Health Trust which will provide universal healthcare for all Washington residents. The Washington Health Trust outlines funding, benefits coverage, provider reimbursements, and implementation of the state universal health care plan. Whole Washington works to build legislative support for the Washington Health Trust which would require majority support in the House, Senate, and from the Governor.
Read more about SB 5335.

Commission Strategy

Washington's Senate Bill 5399 established a permanent universal healthcare commission, comprising 13 members appointed by the governor and legislature. The commission is responsible for recommending a universal healthcare system with a unified financing system to the state legislature. Whole Washington supports this effort and advocates for a truly universal, public, and nonprofit single-payer plan.

Ballot Initiative Strategy

The initiative process is the direct power of the voters to enact new or change existing laws. It allows the voters to place proposed legislation on the ballot.

There are two types of initiatives:

Initiatives to the People are submitted for a vote of the people at the next state general election. Initiatives submitted to the people require a simple majority of voter approval to become law.

  • Filing starts late December or early January with signature petition sheets due in early July.

Initiatives to the Legislature are submitted to the Legislature at its regular session each January. Once submitted, the Legislature must take one of the following three actions:

  • The Legislature may adopt the initiative as proposed and it becomes law without a vote of the people;
  • The Legislature may reject or refuse to act on the proposed initiative and the initiative must be placed on the ballot at the next state general election; or
  • The Legislature may propose a different measure dealing with the same subject and both measures must be placed on the next state general election ballot.

Filing starts in early March with signatures due in early January.

Approximately 325,000* valid signatures from registered Washington voters must be collected, but it is recommended by the Secretary of State to turn in as many as 405,000 to account for invalid signatures. If enough valid signatures are collected, The Washington Health Trust will appear on the ballot for the following year’s November general election.

*Based on ballots cast in the most recent Governor’s election and subject to change.

2024 Town Halls

Whole Washington is going on the road in Spring/Summer of 2024 to bring public, non-partisan, educational conversations healthcare to Washingtonians in every corner of our state.

The goal is 3-fold:

  1. to educate the public about the Washington Health Trust as currently proposed
  2. to host an open dialog that allows for better understanding of public experience, support, opposition, wishes, healthcare needs, healthcare stories, financial concerns, etc
  3. to take the experience/knowledge gained from the town hall road trip and turn it into a successful initiative campaign.

2025 Initiative

Whole Washington strategic plan includes running our next initiative in 2025.  We have not yet decided which path to take (Initiative to the People or Initiative to the Legislature), but in 2025 our volunteers will be working to collect 400,000* signatures by the appropriate deadline to get the initiative on the ballot for Washington voters to pass directly.

Whole Washington places a great deal of hope in the other highlighted strategies that rely on strong recommendations from the Universal Health Care Commission and ACTION from our Legislature to enact a state-based universal healthcare system. We also understand and embrace the importance of grassroots organizing and agitation. Being in the streets and collecting signatures in support of universal healthcare plays a vital role in this movement, one that cannot be underestimated.

Take the first step of support by signing the pledge, then sign up to volunteer. We’re going to need you.

Federal Congress Strategy

Whole Washington supports nationally expanded and improved Medicare for all as the most cost-effective and socially just universal healthcare plan. We support Rep. Pramila Jayapal (WA) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT) as sponsors of Medicare for All. We also support Rep. Ro Khanna's (CA) State-Based Universal Healthcare Act (SBUHCA). We request that you please ask your representatives and senators to sign on as cosponsors to these bills in Congress. Additionally, ask them if they would sponsor a companion bill for SBUHCA, which would make it easier for state-based single-payer plans to be enacted until a national plan is passed.