To our friends, volunteers, and faithful supporters,
This is not the message I was hoping to write to you today. Unfortunately, despite a Herculean effort from a heroic team of volunteers, we were unable to gather enough signatures to get I-1552 on the ballot. We exceeded last year’s total by over 20,000 signatures, and we know that so many more people throughout the state would be willing to sign if given the chance, but the truth is that we simply couldn’t reach them in time.
We knew from day one that the job before us would be an uphill battle. It has been over fifteen years since a volunteer team has been able to get an initiative on the ballot in Washington without millionaire funding. But we also knew that the overwhelming majority of Washington’s residents think it's inexcusable to allow grown men access to women's showers and intimate facilities. We knew that WAC 162-32 is innately dangerous and ripe for abuse. And we knew that doing nothing was not an option.
We had a well-crafted plan based on lessons learned last year. The plan was executed well, given the variables of a complete volunteer workforce. Our paid signatures exceeded our goals. Fund raising, while sporadic, was ultimately successful. Collection, organization, and processing were well done.
And let me tell you about our volunteers. From the 84 year-old woman dedicating every weekend to signature collection so that little girls across the state would have privacy she herself had been denied as a child, to the brave man answering our phones and fielding over 200 prank calls a night from our opposition…. From the volunteer who set up a table 8 hours a day, five days a week outside the Pierce County Annex, determined to do his part to restore the safety and privacy of women, to the mom of four who still found time to spearhead the volunteer efforts in two entire counties to make sure they were well represented, you should know that good people care an awful lot about defending your privacy, and the number of them continues to increase each day.
We will not stop working to reverse this dangerous rule and restore the safety and privacy of women and girls in Washington. Whether that means trying again next year or working with the legislature in the upcoming session will be determined in the near future.
This problem didn’t happen overnight, and neither will the solution to it. But no matter how long it takes, one thing is certain: a passionate new team of committed activists is beginning to sound the alarm and rouse the sleeping giant into action. We registered over 7,000 new voters and mobilized a number of previously inactive groups for the cause. With 240,000 signatures in hand, we nearly accomplished what many have declared impossible in our state.
With tremendous gratitude to the people who made this happen and renewed resolve to restore safety and sanity in our state, we end this year’s effort not with defeat but with determination. Washington’s women and girls are still at risk. They still deserve better. And we intend to see that they get it.
It has been a true honor to fight with and for you. Thank you for standing with us. Stay tuned, and stay bold.
Kaeley Triller Haver
Just Want Privacy Campaign