Whole Washington is a grassroots coalition of healthcare professionals, activists and volunteers from all sectors, age groups, and perspectives across the State of Washington and beyond. Our common belief is that healthcare is a human right, and with that principle in mind, we are passionately fighting for a single-payer, Universal Healthcare system to serve all of us.
We endorse efforts on both a state and national level and support organizations, officials, and candidates that are working with urgency to make Universal Healthcare a reality. Our focus is on those that are struggling and vulnerable, not the privileged few who may be inconvenienced. We do not support delay tactics, incremental approaches, or any effort that assumes the for-profit model can stay in place for necessary care. We believe the only way to true social justice, cost relief, and personal freedom is through a single-payer system.
Whole Washington started after 735 passed in November 2016. Because the staff was either uninsured or under-insured, getting universal healthcare was an important issue. Several of the staff decided on the name and got to work. The board and campaign director went to coalition meetings, recruited steering committee members from healthcare organizations and activist groups around the state, and requested experts join the initiative writing committee.
Whole Washington also raised money to get a funding study done by world renowned economist Dr. Gerald Friedman, to ensure that the funding portion was sufficient and well researched. After a year of organizing and writing the ballot measure, which is based primarily on the WHST (Washington Health Security Trust) bill and whose author was also on the Initiative Writing Committee, the language was filed with the Secretary of State. In January, the language was approved and I-1600 was given its number.
Volunteers covered the state gathering signatures and educating the public on the benefits of Universal Healthcare. The campaign garnered support from LD’s, organizations, campaigning candidates, and elected officials. See the I-1600 Endorsements here. After falling short of the required amount, but gathering an astounding 103,000 signatures for universal healthcare via a 100% volunteer effort, the IWC met with Senator Chase and other stakeholders to edit the initiative language so it could be introduced as legislation as SB 5222, filed by Senator Hasegawa. SB 5222 did not make it out of committee last session despite passionate pressure from Whole Washington’s healthcare advocates. We are looking for Representatives to introduce the bill in the House and looking forward to meeting with both Reps and Senators to advance the bill next session.
Our Campaign Director – Cindy Black
Cindy Black has been pushing for progressive reforms in Washington State for 8 years. She first worked as a volunteer coordinator to pass a state initiative to require labeling of GMOs. After seeing the onslaught of money that came in to defeat that campaign, she turned her efforts to democracy reform. In 2014 she worked with WAmend (Washington Coalition to Amend the Constitution) to put Washington State on record as calling for a U.S. Constitutional amendment to overturn court decisions like Citizens United.
In 2016, Cindy directed the successful statewide ballot campaign for Initiative 735 that passed with 63%, making Washington the 18th state to call for such an amendment. She went on to be become the executive director of Fix Democracy First, passing pro-democracy reforms and building an active citizen’s movement. She continues her efforts through ongoing coalition building, common sense legislation, and civic engagement.
Field Director – Georgia Davenport
Georgia Davenport served as our Campaign Director and led the 100% volunteer effort to pass universal healthcare via a ballot initiative in 2018. In 2017 she founded Whole Washington, filed the paperwork with the Secretary of State and began all the necessary steps to form a 501c4 capable of running a campaign. In late 2018 and early 2019 Georgia, along with members from the Whole Washington Initiative Writing Committee and Senator Chase, met with the Department of Revenue and the Employment Securities Department to vet I-1600 so that it could be introduced in the legislature as a fully funded and easily implementable bill. Senator Hasegawa filed the bill in January and since then Georgia has been organizing efforts to get it a hearing.
Georgia is also a mother, a Washington State Democratic Central Committee Representative for the 33rd legislative district, and the Secretary for the Washington State Progressive Caucus. She was also the Phone Bank Organizer for I-735, the initiative aimed at overturning Citizens United, which passed in 2016 by 63%. Her interest in politics comes from wanting a better future for her daughter and all the other children who need us to enact bold legislation today, to ensure they can get the healthcare they need, without using Gofundme, and so they have a planet to inherit.