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Earlier this month, nearly half the inmates at the Washington State Penitentiary in Walla Walla staged a hunger strike. It ended after five days. The inmates were protesting the quality of prison food.

It’s an issue that has been simmering in Washington prisons for years.

FILE: Starbucks location
Flickr Photo/Yukiko Matsuoka (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/emrGV5

Starbucks will close 8,000 stores late next month so employees can attend an afternoon-long training about racial bias. That follows an incident in Philadelphia where employees called police on two African American men who were waiting for a friend but hadn’t purchased anything.

So, will one afternoon of training work? We asked an expert.

Safety representative for the Seattle Tunnel Partners, Marisa Roddick, wears stickers on her helmet for each year that she has worked on the tunnel project, from 2013 to 2018, on Tuesday, March 27, 2018, in Seattle.
KUOW photo/Megan Farmer

When Seattle's Alaskan Way Viaduct was built in the 1950s, we didn't know much about earthquakes. California's Loma Prieta quake in 1989 opened our eyes when their viaduct collapsed and crushed 41 people. 

And when the Nisqually quake in 2001 damaged our own viaduct, it sealed the deal for officials: The viaduct had to go.

Gun owner Rick Vadnais high-fives with Basilia Brownwell during their conversation at the 'Ask A Gun Owner' event at the Hillman City Collaboratory on March 31.
KUOW photo/Gil Aegerter

The gun control debate has become a polarizing experience for many Americans. It’s unusual to hear civil discussions between the opposing sides.

The KUOW “Ask A…” series brought together gun owners and non-gun owners on March 31 to share their points of view at the Hillman City Collaboratory. Sonya Harris talked to some of them about those conversations.


Commuters ride the E Line bus southbound on Aurora Avenue North, around 5:30 a.m., on Wednesday, April 11, 2018, in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

The RapidRide E Line is Seattle's most crowded bus route, with more than 17,000 boardings each weekday. It connects Aurora Avenue North to downtown.

Che Sehyun poses for a portrait on Wednesday, March 28, 2018, near his home in Renton.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Like so many children of immigrants, Che Sehyun was raised to pursue the traditional American dream: college and a professional career.

“That was, to me, to be a doctor,” he says.

Things didn’t quite work out that way.

Bill Steele demonstrates of the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network uses a shake table to show how earthquake forces gain power as they move away from the ground. But under the ground, it's a different story.
KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

The Seattle region has been growing so fast, there are now 400,000 more people here than in 2009, when we agreed to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct with a tunnel. 

Growing up, Gary Kempler remembers watching flocks of bighorn sheep near his hometown of Clarkston, Washington.

“Good size herds along the river,” Kempler said — he could see up to eight flocks in one day.

Slowly, after the wildlife faced battles with a virulent form of pneumonia, Kempler saw fewer and fewer bighorns. Maybe one or two sheep at a time.

Virginia Cole, with the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, teaches a legal aid class at the Northwest Detention Center on Wednesday, June 21, 2017, in Tacoma.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Every day at detention centers around the country, lawyers give "know your rights" presentations to immigrants facing deportation. For many, it’s the only legal help they’ll get.

And the feds just pulled the money for the program.

The owner of a seafood processing company in Pierce County, Washington, has pleaded guilty in a case involving the illegal sale of sea cucumbers, leathery creatures that are considered a delicacy to eat in some cultures.

Bellevue and Seattle in the distance from Jeremy Noble's Cessna 182 airplane during his evening commute on Wednesday, August 23, 2017.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Kim Malcolm talks with Steve Marshall about Bellevue's plan to implement electric, self-driving van pools and shuttles. Marshall is transportation technology partnership manager for the city of Bellevue.

A turreted brick home known as The Castle. A tan bungalow. An 111-year-old corner house with a covered porch.

Just south of the state Capitol building you’ll find a neighborhood dotted with quaint, historic houses. But you won’t find families with children in many of them.

Nichole Fabre drives the RapidRide E Line bus up and down Aurora. On a recent weekday morning, she started driving around 3:55 a.m., beginning in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

The most congested bus route in King County runs down Aurora. It’s called the RapidRide E Line. The crowding on those buses brings all kinds of people together.


Democrat donkey
Flickr Photo/Georgia Democrats (CC BY 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/a77qRq

King County Democrats say they’ve been torn this year between resolving a workplace scandal in their own ranks, and supporting candidates in this much-anticipated election year. Now they say they’re ready to move forward.

Presidential candidate Donald Trump, pictured here 2013 Conservative Political Action Conference.
Flickr Photo/Gage Skidmore (CC BY SA 2.0)/https://flic.kr/p/e41ELr

WASHINGTON (AP) — The latest on U.S. missile strikes on Syria (all times Eastern). 

2:50 a.m.

The Russian military says Syria’s Soviet-made air defense systems have shot down all 12 cruise missile aimed at a Syrian air base.

The Russian Defense Ministry said that 12 cruise missiles have been launched at the Dumayr air base east of Damascus. It said that Syria’s air defense assets have downed all of them.

The ministry said that altogether more than 100 cruise and air-to-ground missiles were launched by U.S., British and French aircraft and navy ships. It did not mention the overall number of missiles intercepted by Syrian forces.

The Russian military said it hasn’t engaged its air defense assets at its air and naval bases in Syria.

Katy Ellis is a mother and dedicated her poem to Charleena Lyles who was pregnant when she was killed.
KUOW PHOTO/CASEY MARTIN

The news can be troubling and sometimes disturbing. 

For poets it can be a source of inspiration. To help process the stories in our news feeds, we invite poets to write an original piece inspired by a KUOW story for #NewsPoet.


The capitol grounds in Salem and Olympia will offer a colorful juxtaposition of political movements Saturday. Marches for Science are scheduled in 10 Northwest cities. These roughly coincide with separate pro-gun rallies at the state capitals..

Seattle City Council member Teresa Mosqueda sponsored the bill to end subminimum wages.
Courtesy of Jamie Rand Imaging/Jamie Colman

Paying low wages to people with disabilities is no longer allowed in Seattle. Seattle officials have eliminated what's known as the subminimum wage, becoming one of the first cities in the nation to do so.

Marilyn Covarrubias, center, is comforted as she begins to cry while testifying about the shooting death in 2015 of her son by police, at a House Public Safety Committee hearing on Jan. 31, 2017, in Olympia, Wash.
AP Photo/Elaine Thompson

The family of an unarmed Native American man killed by Lakewood Police in 2015 is suing the city in federal court. The complaint accuses the department of racial bias and negligence in its training.

More than 30 popular hiking trails on the Oregon side of the Columbia River Gorge remain closed because of hazards left in the wake of last year's Eagle Creek wildfire. That has park rangers wrangling crowds on the unburned Washington side of the Gorge.

NPR

It’s time to throw away the objective journalist hat for a moment and put on my completely-biased, music-loving shoes, because the submissions are in for NPR’s Tiny Desk Contest

The judges at NPR are pouring through all the entries right now to pick their national winner, and that announcement is expected April 24. In the meantime, I watched all 132 videos submitted to the contest from Washington state.

Brettler Family Place, part of the complex at Sand Point Housing.
Solid Ground

“Boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom.” Gunshots, no doubt, J.C. thought. 

Dennis Wise / University of Washington

Kim Malcolm talks with University of Washington associate psychology professor Kristina Olson about her research into transgender kids. On Thursday, Olson was honored with the National Science Foundation's Alan T. Waterman award, which includes a $1 million research grant.

Olson says the funding will be used to expand the TransYouth Project, and to establish a mentorship program for LGBTQ students, and others who are underrepresented in the field of science.

In the wake of school shootings like Sandy Hook and Parkland, everyone from school officials and parents to first responders and politicians have looked for ways to protect children from gunfire. Now sensor technology originally made for missiles is being put to the test.

The city of Monroe is enforcing a new ordinance that prohibits people from sitting or lying on sidewalks, joining a growing number of cities in Washington creating similar laws in the name of public safety.

Workers plan to tackle some of the nastiest waste on the massive Hanford cleanup site next month. The so-called K-Basin holds sandy, explosive, potentially flammable and highly-radioactive sludge stored in six large containers.

People pack city hall for a hearing on a proposed income tax
KUOW Photo/Kate Walters

Mirror, mirror on the wall, who's the unfairest of them all?

Famed is thy progressiveness, Seattle, but when it comes to taxes, it’s you.


In congressional testimony Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke said he has heard the strong opposition from the West Coast to the Trump administration's plan for offshore oil and gas drilling. He expressed doubt drilling would ever happen along the Pacific Northwest coast.

From left, Damaso Garcia, Jose Martinez and Justin Ducette laugh during a break on Thursday, March 1, 2018, at Evergreen Washelli Cemetery in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

Have you ever wondered what it's like to work at a cemetery? Here's your chance to find out. 


FILE - In this May 25, 2017, file photo, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg delivers the commencement address at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass.
AP Photo/Steven Senne, File

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is appearing on Capitol Hill for a second day of hearings about protecting its users' data.

The House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing follows hours of questioning by lawmakers in the Senate.

Facebook is under scrutiny after revelations that the data-mining and political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica obtained the data of tens of millions of Facebook users. The company is accused of using that data to target American voters in the 2016 election.

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