2nd Annual WSSJ BBQ

Please join us on August 11th for our

2nd annual BBQ!

Building Community – It’s All About November


West Sound for Social Justice, IT’S A BBQ!

We will provide the hamburgers, hot dogs, and veggie burgers, and you’re invited to bring your favorite side dish to enjoy on your own or share with friends! Bring your own beverage; we’ll provide water. Apologies, but alcoholic beverages are prohibited per park regulations.

(Please also check out our Facebook event page  Your RSVP will help us plan how much food to buy).

WSSJ’s annual picnic is open to all ages. We’ll break bread together, ponder our current predicament, envision a brighter future, do voter registrations, sign petitions, and celebrate our community bonds.

FOR THE POLITICALLY-MINDED: Help us identify Trump’s Greatest Hits as we seize an opportunity for communal expression and decide how WE want to make America great again.

FOR FUN: Feeling off-center, overwhelmed, and depressed out of your mind? Make time for an afternoon of fun! Enjoy friends, food, and music, plus an array of intriguing raffle items, an open mic, access to games, and more. Feel free to bring your own park-friendly toys to share!

FOR YOUR COMFORT: Those attending are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, picnic blankets, and awnings/umbrellas to help curb the summer sun.

We’ll also have outreach booths hosted by other local social justice organizations. Hosting your own outreach booth is a great way for your organization to support our work and for us to support you. For more info and the Outreach Registration Form, email CoryWalster@gmail.com by August 4.

Hope to see you there!

2018 BBQ Flyer

Here is a link to a pdf version of the flyer. Please feel free to download and distribute it to your friends and other social justice groups.

WSSJ Forum on Homelessness

West Sound for Social Justice presents

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Sunday, April 15 @ 2:00 – 4:30 p.m.
Doors open at 1:30 p.m. and program starts promptly at 2:00
A local kick off to National Volunteer Week and Kitsap Great Give
With Moderator Josh Farley, Kitsap Sun
At the Bremerton United Methodist Church
1150 Marine Dr., Bremerton

Join us as we hear from the leaders in this work and learn how to support them in their efforts.


We will have three panel discussions, the last two each followed by an interactive Q & A with the audience.

Doors will open at 1:30 p.m. for mingling, coffee, and light fare, and the program will begin promptly at 2:00 p.m.


  • Dezerae Hamblin, Volunteer – StandUp for Kids
  • Gerald Harris, Currently-homeless
  • Richard LeMieux, Previously-homeless author, Breakfast at Sally’s


  • Bridget Callahan, Housing Solutions Center of Kitsap County
  • Kurt Wiest, Bremerton Housing Authority


We’ll conclude the afternoon with Monica Bernhard of Kitsap Mental Health Services, and a half-hour facilitated session to give our input on Kitsap County’s 2018 Homeless Housing Plan.

Make KITSAP HOMELESSNESS: IT’S ABOUT US part of your local kick off to National Volunteer Week (April 15 – 21) and Kitsap Great Give (April 24) as we take this opportunity to raise funds and supplies for

Find out what’s needed most here, and we’ll have collection barrels on site.

Food Bank Suggestions


We are also pleased to welcome special musical guest, Rick Cortes. Rick is an acoustic guitarist / singer / songwriter who arrived in Bremerton over a decade ago intent on starting a new life, but soon found himself homeless. His experiences moved him toward music with a conscience, and together with his “forever sweetheart” and co-writer Lana Taylor, he penned songs addressing societal injustices, including “Broken Man,” a song submitted for Richard LeMieux’s Breakfast at Sally’s film project. Retired from the Bremerton School District, Rick currently serves as a staff member at Benedict House.

Listen to some of Rick’s music below:

Interstate 45

Keeper of the Flame

Matters of the Heart

Broken Man

There is no charge for this event, but we appreciate any food items you might bring to support the Bremerton FoodLine. If you’re not certain of what is appropriate to bring, here is a list of possibilities:

Children are welcome at the event and an activity area will be available.

Also, visit our Facebook Event page to register:

Kitsap Homelessness – It’s About Us – Event Page

This event is co-sponsored by:

  • C.A.R.E Community Advocates for Restorative Practices in Education
  • Civil Survival, Kitsap Game Changers
  • Democratic Socialists of America
  • Kitsap Mental Health Services
  • Kitsap Progressive Action Network (KPAN)
  • Kitsap Strong
  • Kitsap (SURJ) Showing Up for Racial Justice
  • Kitsap Unitarian Universalist Fellowship (KUUF) Social Justice Committee
  • Partnering For Youth Achievement


To find out more about the current status of homelessness and affordable housing in Kitsap County, check out some of the documents below.

These documents also include a summary of related legislation passed in Washington state this last session, a Fact Sheet on Homelessness and Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders, an update on the Kitsap County Homeless Housing Plan, and a White Paper and PowerPoint presentation on Tiny Houses as one approach to addressing homelessness.

Presentation on Homelessness and Affordable Housing in Kitsap County by Kurt Wiest, Bremerton Housing Authority (pdf version)

Presentation on Homelessness and Affordable Housing in Kitsap County by Kurt Wiest, Bremerton Housing Authority (PowerPoint version)

2018 Legislation Summary2017 Annual Dashboard – Kitsap Homeless Response System Performance (pdf)

Kitsap Homeless Housing Plan – 2018 Update (pdf)

Fact Sheet on Homelessness, Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders (pdf)

Tiny Homes White Paper (pdf)

Kitsap Tiny Cottage Villages 10-16-17 (PowerPoint)

Are You Homeless? – Resource Guide (pdf)

How To Help People Living Homeless – December 2017 (pdf)

March for Our Lives Kitsap


An estimated 500 – 600 people gathered in Silverdale on March 24th to join the over 800 worldwide March for Our Lives gatherings.

Here’s a slideshow gallery of photos from the March:

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…..and a link to video posted by the Kitsap Sun
Kitsap Joins Nationwide Protests


Join us Saturday, March 24, from 12:00 – 2:00 p.m. in Silverdale where students, educators, and other concerned citizens will gather at the intersection of Silverdale Way and Kitsap Mall Blvd. to promote safe schools free of gun violence.

In the wake of the February 14 Florida shooting, a group of former Kitsap County educators and community activists founded “4 the Kids – Kitsap,” whose goal is to support and connect local high school students and the community in actions and policies that promote safe schools and leadership for change. The Silverdale rally is one of over 500 marches planned nationally on March 24 to both commemorate the Valentine’s Day tragedy and demonstrate that Kitsap County cares.

On March 14, tens of thousands of students from over 3,100 locations nationwide, including students from across Kitsap county, held vigils, walkouts and voter registration drives to honor the victims of the Parkland shooting. and demonstrate for change. This march will support and continue the efforts of young people locally and across the nation to promote safe schools.

Make and bring your own sign to show your support for schools free of gun violence.

Please visit the “4 the Kids” Facebook page for more information and updates on events:
4 the Kids – Kitsap Facebook page

and the Facebook event page:
4 the Kids – Kitsap Facebook event page



MeToo Poster_V_5b

West Sound for Social Justice is pleased to partner with Women’s March Kitsap Huddle to present #MeToo – A Night of Poetry, Music & Stories on Wednesday, January 31 from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the Cloverleaf Sports Bar & Grill, 1240 Hollis Street in East Bremerton.

Members of the community, #MeToo followers, and people who identify as survivors of sexual assault are invited to join us for an evening of solidarity and support as we share poetry, readings, and music. Those who have a song, story, poem, or reading to share are requested to contact Robin at 360.990.9191. Robin is also available to read for those who wish to share their poetry or stories but are unable to do so themselves.

Event organizers hope to expand the conversation around sexual assault, invoke individual and societal healing, and raise local awareness. Admission is free, but those who are interested are urged to RSVP at wssjinfo@gmail.com.

As #MeToo founder Tarana Burke powerfully affirms, “We need a complete cultural transformation if we are to eradicate sexual assault in our lifetimes. It means we must build our families differently, engage our communities and confront some of our long-held assumptions about ourselves… [This] is an opportunity for all of us to take a hard look in the mirror and answer the question: When you hear #MeToo will you stand up to say #NoMore?” Follow the #MeToo movement at www.metoomvmt.org.


MLK event_26

We will have music by Alisha Davis Freeman and Calina Lawrence.

Calina Lawrence

Vocalist, spoken-word poet, and activist Calina Lawrence joined friend Shailene Woodley on the red carpet at the 2018 Golden Globe awards. Calina works to raise awareness of “POC racial injustice, police brutality, mass-incarceration, gentrification, misrepresentation of Native Americans in education & mainstream United States media, climate injustice, blood quantum and enrollment issues, foster youth, suicide prevention, and violence against women,” to name a few. You can visit Calina online, and watch her perform “Generations”.

The Women’s March Kitsap Huddle formed in the aftermath of the worldwide Women’s March. Its intent is to keep informed and stay involved — not just in resistance to the new administration, but also in helping the community grow. To learn more about Women’s March Kitsap, visit www.womensmarchkitsap.com.

The Cloverleaf offers a full dinner menu and bar.

There is no charge for this event.

Watch Robin perform some of her original poetry at our “Still Dreaming” event last summer.


Here are some statistics that reveal the scope of sexual assault:

Every 98 seconds an American is sexually assaulted
1 out of every 6 women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime
82% of all juvenile victims are female. 90% of adult rape victims are female.

Ages 12-34 are the highest risk years for rape and sexual assault.

1 out of every 10 rape victims is male
About 3% of American men—or 1 in 33—have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime

21% of TGQN (transgender, genderqueer, nonconforming) college students have been sexually assaulted, compared to 18% of non-TGQN females, and 4% of non-TGQN males

94% of women who are raped experience symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) during the two weeks following the rape
30% of women report symptoms of PTSD 9 months after the rape

American Indians are twice as likely to experience a rape/sexual assault compared to all races
41% of sexual assaults against American Indians are committed by a stranger; 34% by an acquaintance; and 25% by an intimate or family member

An estimated 80,600 inmates each year experience sexual violence while in prison or jail
60% of all sexual violence against inmates is perpetrated by jail or prison staff
More than 50% of the sexual contact between inmate and staff member—all of which is illegal—is nonconsensual

18,900 military members experienced unwanted sexual contact in the fiscal year ending September, 2014
4.3% of active duty women and 0.9% of active duty men experienced unwanted sexual contact in FY14

Source:  RAINN: Victims of Sexual Violence Statistics

27th Annual Kitsap County Conference for Human Rights

The 27th Annual Kitsap County Conference for Human Rights is scheduled for Friday, December 15, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Olympic College in Bremerton. This year’s theme is “Historical Perspectives and Moving Forward.”kitsap-county-conference-human-rights-17

Tickets are on sale now via Brown Paper Tickets.Go to https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3127095. Ticket prices are $25 for youth 18 and under; $40 for adults; and $50 for adults including an informational table to share materials from non-profit organizations. All ticket prices include breakfast and lunch. Parking is free.

The Council for Human Rights is honored to announce the conference keynote speaker is Clarence Moriwaki, president of the Bainbridge Island Japanese American Community and founder and past president of the Bainbridge Island Japanese American Community and founder and past president of the Bainbridge Island Japanese American Exclusion Memorial Association. He will present “History, Honor, Healing and Hope: The timeless – and timely – story of the devastating impacts of fear, prejudice, intolerance and failure of political leadership during World War II, and the hopeful, healing power of redemption to let it not happen again.”

The conference also features a panel, workshops and networking opportunities.

Follow the link below for more information.

2017 Kitsap County Conference on Human Rights