Ty Pethe

for Seattle City Council Position #9

We seek to provide every Seattlite the opportunity to learn, live, and grow in a city that supports them. Our responsibility is to make sure they have access to education, affordable housing, and meaningful work that pays a living wage.

About Ty

Over 15 Years of Public Advocacy.

Dear Seattle,

At the May meeting of my union, some of my members asked why I haven’t requested their endorsement. I told them that in the interest of honesty and integrity, I wanted to go through with our union’s plan to hold a candidate debate and then go through the endorsement process like any other candidate. My members laughed and said I’m going into the wrong field because politicians are never honest.

I don’t believe this has to be true. Through my work with state and local governments advocating to raise the minimum wage, provide sick leave, and increase funding for education, I’ve seen how the process can work.

However, I did not make this happen on my own. My union members and my community were vital to these successes. I’ve seen the change we can make as individuals and as part of the community. Citizens will always have the strongest voice.

I’ve proudly worked as an activist and an employee of the Seattle Community Colleges for over a decade. I am honored to serve as the President of the WA Federation of State Employees (WFSE) Local 304, serving 2,100 members in Seattle and King County. I’ve proudly worked for the City of Seattle as a trainer for the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program and as a delegate of the Youth and Families Initiative. I would be humbled to continue my work serving the people of Seattle as a member of the City Council.

- Ty Pethe



All Seattlites should have access to good, affordable education and career services.

Free College

Seattle high school students deserve access to higher education.

  • For $12 million a year (less than 1/2 of one percent of the City’s annual budget), we can give every Seattle high school graduate the opportunity to go to college.
  • Expand South Seattle Community College’s 13th Year Promise Scholarship program so all graduates of high schools within the City of Seattle are eligible for one free year at any of the Seattle Colleges.
  • Expand Seattle Promise scholarship program to provide a full four-year scholarship to every student in the Seattle Colleges who demonstrates financial need, enrolls full time and maintains a 3.0 GPA.

Free ORCA Card for Students

Transportation should not limit students' opportunities.

  • Work with King County Metro, Seattle colleges and school districts to provide free ORCA cards for high school and college students.

Open Source Textbooks

Creating our own freely available textbooks for K-12 and higher ed would save our students and school districts millions of dollars a year.

  • Work with teachers, unions, Seattle Colleges, and Seattle Public Schools to create textbooks for K-12 and higher education.
  • Textbooks would be freely available online under a Creative Commons license, and could be printed at cost for schools and students to purchase.
  • British Columbia started funding the creation of open textbooks for their public universities in 2012, and the move has already saved students millions of dollars.
Read more about our education platform:

Housing for All

Everyone in Seattle deserves a safe place to call home.


Our city is growing - let’s choose to do it intelligently.

  • Create livable and walkable neighborhoods where people of all income levels can thrive and live together. To do this, we need to make sure our neighborhoods have multiple transportation methods and encourage local businesses to use the street level of multi-floor residential buildings. We all need the neighborhood grocery store, cafe, restaurant, hardware store, and more.
  • Increase density and allow upzoning in our urban villages and along mass transit corridors.
  • Work with the community to make sure that increased density does not negatively change the character of the neighborhood.
  • Promote development of long-lasting, low water, and energy consumption buildings.

Affordable Housing

Everyone in Seattle deserves a safe place to call home.

  • Target 25% Mandatory Housing Affordability (MHA) for units in all new buildings, and work with the communities to find the right amount and level of affordability for them. We need the highest percent possible without slowing down development.
  • Support non-profits and other organizations providing subsidized housing and other affordable housing options. Funding should be based on efficiency and amount of housing created.
  • Housing First model to focus on getting homeless Seattleites a permanent place to live first, then address health and substance abuse issues. Housing First is the compassionate, practical, and least expensive solution.
  • Change zoning to allow for mother-in-law cottages and other Accessory Dwelling Units.

Upgrade Seattle

Internet access is a necessity, and should be a public utility.

  • Create an internet public utility district for the City of Seattle. We need better options accessing broadband internet. Everyone needs access to the internet for work, study, and staying connected to friends & family.
  • Work with UW, Seattle Colleges and City Light to turn unused infrastructure into a high capacity network.
Read more about our housing platform:

Worker's Rights

Make Seattle a city of opportunity for everyone.

Require Just Cause for Termination

No one should be fired without a reason.

  • Just Cause is a social justice issue. You can’t determine if a firing was for discriminatory reasons if employers are not required to give reason for termination.

Seattle Capital Gains Tax

Seattle has an upside-down tax system - those who can afford to pay taxes should pay their fair share. Tax investments, not labor.

  • Establish a 5% tax on capital-gains earnings above $250,000 for individuals and $500,000 for joint filers.
  • Capital gains is not a tax on wages or earned income, but a tax on appreciated assets, like stocks and bonds, or investment properties.
  • Funds will go toward education and affordable housing.

Parental Leave for All

Congratulations to the Washington Work and Families Coalition! Thank you to our State Legislature! Parental Leave is now a reality in Washington State!

  • We still think that employees should not have to contribute, especially low wage workers, but this is a major victory for every Washingtonian!
  • Check out this article in The Stranger for more information.
Read more about our workers' rights platform:

Other Issues Important to Us

While our campaign is focused on making Education, Affordable Housing, and a Better Workplace a reality, there are other issues that we all care about. Here are our positions on other issues that we care about.

Welcoming Immigrants and Refugees

Seattle is a Sanctuary City.

Changing the Culture of Law Enforcement

Better Training and Adoption of a Community Policing Model

Communities of Color

People of color have borne the weight of unequal treatment in their jobs, homes, education, and law enforcement. We must seek to build equity for all.


Seattle has a reputation for being a safe and accepting city, but LGBTQ folks are some of the most likely to be targeted for discrimination, harassment, and hate crimes in Seattle. Hardships such as homelessness, workplace discrimination, and sexual assault are also significantly higher in the LGBTQ.

Public Health & Wellness

We are only as strong as the weakest in our community. Healthcare is a human right.


We need more options for transportation within our city. We must continue the expansion of mass transit, especially light rail. Better mass transit will lower C02 emission and reduce traffic.


Let’s protect the natural beauty of our surroundings.

Are we missing an issue you care about?

Reach out and educate us on what matters to you. We’d love to hear from you.

Read more about our entire platform:

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