By Senators Hasegawa, Fraser, and Kohl-Welles
WHEREAS, Northwest Center was founded in 1965 by parents who chose to keep their children with developmental disabilities in the community and who challenged the prevailing notion that their children could not be taught; and
WHEREAS, These parents hired their own teachers to develop special needs education programs and found that their children could indeed learn; and
WHEREAS, The parents who formed Northwest Center also authored and won approval of civil rights legislation that opened the doors of Washington state schools to all children. This was the first such law in the nation and served as the model for federal legislation; and
WHEREAS, Northwest Center continues its mission to the present day by promoting the growth, development, and independence of children and adults with developmental disabilities through programs of education, rehabilitation, and work opportunity. In doing so, it touches the lives of nearly 1000 families annually; and
WHEREAS, Northwest Center has made a substantial difference in the lives of children and adults in Washington state. For example, in 2014 the center's work resulted in: An 18.3 percent increase in Seattle job placement and a 211 percent increase in Spokane job placement; over 130 children from ages birth to three receiving Early Intervention Services; and over 150 clients receiving job coaching and ongoing support in the work place; and
WHEREAS, The social enterprise model of the Northwest Center allows its programs to thrive through a sustainable combination of philanthropy, profits from its own inclusive businesses, donations collected by "The Big Blue Truck," and program revenue; and
WHEREAS, Northwest Center never turns a child away from services due to the severity of their disability or their family's ability to pay; and
WHEREAS, Northwest Center has developed an innovative Expanded School to Work pilot project within the Issaquah School District. This program allows Northwest Center to begin School to Work services for students a year earlier than the traditional program. As a result more students with special needs will be placed in well-matched, meaningful, steady jobs; and
WHEREAS, 2015 is the 50th anniversary of Northwest Center which has grown to become the largest community service organization serving children and adults of all abilities in the Pacific Northwest;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, That the Senate congratulate Northwest Center on 50 years of service to the developmentally disabled community and recognize and honor Northwest Center for its remarkable work in providing important services for children and adults with developmental disabilities in this state; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That copies of this resolution be immediately transmitted by the Secretary of the Senate to Northwest Center.
I, Hunter G. Goodman, Secretary of the Senate,
do hereby certify that this is a true and
correct copy of Senate Resolution 8687,
adopted by the Senate
June 27, 2015
Secretary of the Senate