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Credit: KUOW / Teo Popescu design

How would Seattle's mayoral candidates address violent crime?

Seattleites are voting for a new mayor this year. We're asking all the 2021 primary candidates how they would address a range of issues facing the city.

This week, we ask about violent crime in Seattle.

QUESTION: Seattle experienced a spike in the murder rate from 2019-2020. What’s one thing you’d do differently to try and address violent crime?

Clinton Bliss

"Integrity, Compassion, Wise Action. Independent Democrat."

caption: Clinton Bliss is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
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Clinton Bliss is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
Credit: Courtesy of the Bliss Campaign

"Stop enabling addiction and encouraging crime as a way for people living in tents in our city parks as a way to meet their basic needs. Small crimes lead to bigger crimes. Caring for others does not mean we need to enable criminal behavior. Prevention is paramount. We can reduce the horrifying mass shootings by focusing on the responsibilities of gun ownership within a well regulated militia, ensuring that all gun owners are accountable to their communities."

Colleen Echohawk

"Enrolled member of the Pawnee Nation, Candidate For Seattle Mayor"

(Receiving democracy vouchers)

caption: Colleen Echohawk is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary.
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Colleen Echohawk is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary.
Credit: Courtesy of the Colleen Echohawk Campaign

"Seattle city leaders have not focused on prevention and have defunded community based programs to help prevent violent crime. I would prioritize community based investments through a new office within Seattle’s government focused on crime prevention. By partnering with local business, faith groups and community organizations, we can address the systemic and root causes for much of the crime we see in Seattle. I will actively engage and resource innovative community-led prevention programs."

Jessyn Farrell

"A former legislator, nonprofit leader, and working mom who knows how to make progress on tough issues."

(Receiving democracy vouchers)

caption: Jessyn Farrell is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
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Jessyn Farrell is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
Credit: Courtesy of the Jessyn Farrell Campaign

"Gun violence is a pandemic in our community and we need to treat it like one. This means we need to take on the interlocking systems of racism and trickle-down economics and develop city budgets that invest in economic, cultural and social supports that create thriving communities. I would also establish the Seattle Office of Violence Prevention to invest in year-round public education, conduct gun violence research, and make grants to effective community violence prevention programs."

Lorena González

"President of the Seattle City Council and candidate for Mayor of Seattle."

(Receiving democracy vouchers)

caption: Lorena González is a Seattle City Council Member running for mayor in the 2021 primary election.
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Lorena González is a Seattle City Council Member running for mayor in the 2021 primary election.
Credit: Courtesy of the Lorena González Campaign

"As our city continues to re-imagine policing, one thing I consistently hear from police officers is that they want to focus on addressing serious crimes. We don’t need a sworn officer with a badge and a gun to respond to every quality of life issue. These functions can be done by unarmed personnel, such as our Community Service Officers, which would allow armed police to deal with more serious incidents."

Bruce Harrell

"I’m running for mayor to reset city hall, unite Seattle around our progressive values, and move our city forward."

(Receiving democracy vouchers)

caption: Bruce Harrell is a former Seattle City Council Member and candidate for mayor in the 2021 primary election.
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Bruce Harrell is a former Seattle City Council Member and candidate for mayor in the 2021 primary election.
Credit: Courtesy of the Bruce Harrell Campaign

"I’ve called on the city to invest $10 million in federal relief funds toward immediate action, assistance and resources for victims after record rates of gun violence, domestic violence and homicide over the pandemic. I’m the only candidate proposing specific policy initiatives on gun violence: a cabinet level position in the mayor’s office to coordinate prevention efforts citywide, investments in community-led groups and solutions, and diversion programs with outreach to youth and young adults."

Rodney Holt (write-in candidate)

"I have the social aptitude to navigate through these perilous times and unite the people of Seattle."

(Receiving democracy vouchers)

caption: Rodney Holt is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
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Rodney Holt is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
Credit: Courtesy of the Rodney Holt Campaign

"Create programs to increase police and community engagement."

Andrew Grant Houston

“'Ace' is a queer architect of color, small business owner, activist, millennial, renter, and transit rider."

(Receiving democracy vouchers)

caption: Andrew Grant Houston is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
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Andrew Grant Houston is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
Credit: Justin Khanna

"Currently, we address violent crime with cyclic, retroactive punishment; our policing system looks at the symptoms but not the true causes of crime, like economic instability. This is a part of why I still stand by defunding the police back to their 2010 levels (50%). We doubled their budget and, as the numbers you just cited show, we are not twice as safe. In fact, at those 2010 funding levels, we had about 1,400 less violent crime incidents than we did in 2019, the year you just cited."

Arthur Langlie

"I bring a new set of skills to this position as a builder of teams and solutions."

caption: Arthur Langlie is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary.
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Arthur Langlie is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary.
Credit: Courtesy of the Arthur Langlie Campaign

"It’s not just the murder rate, crime overall is up. Crimes such as vandalism, break-ins, and burglaries are all up. Current leadership believes we should cut the police budget, leading to fewer cops, slower response times, and a backlog of cases. Calls to restructure police services must be introduced with compelling pilot programs to assure effectiveness in Seattle as viable alternatives. We should not cut the police budget out of spite while crime increases unchecked."

Lance Randall

"I am a problem solver who will prioritize delivering results for our residents."

(Receiving democracy vouchers)

caption: Lance Randall is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
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Lance Randall is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary election.
Credit: Courtesy of the Lance Randall Campaign

"I will develop and implement a 'Relationship-Based Policing Program' for the department to create community trust and partnership. I, along with the Police Chief and the Commanders, will be more interactive with our residents through regular 'Town Hall Meetings.' The goal of these meetings is to work with residents to develop a 'Community Policing Philosophy' based on organizational strategies, crime prevention techniques and public safety programs that have been implemented around the country."

Don Rivers

(Receiving democracy vouchers)

caption: Don Rivers is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary.
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Don Rivers is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary.
Credit: Courtesy of Don Rivers Campaign

"We need programs that will allow our citizens to walk in and get mental health Services. Make it accessible. Separation of Criminal Justice and Social Services. We have forgotten about our youth and the many programs that can be use to keep the streets from influencing them. I believe strongly in community involvement."

Bobby Tucker

caption: Bobby Tucker is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary.
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Bobby Tucker is a candidate for Seattle mayor in the 2021 primary.
Credit: Courtesy of Bobby Tucker

"I would be more visible where these violent crimes are happing and find out 'why?' What's missing in this neighborhood that violent crimes continue to go up and in other neighborhoods there is none, to very little, crime and not so violent."

RELATED: How would Seattle's mayoral candidates tackle climate change?

NOTE: Each Seattle mayoral candidate was asked to describe themselves and answer the same questions. Follow the coverage leading up to the August primary at KUOW.org/elections. Stay tuned to KUOW's Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram pages for an opportunity to offer your own answers to these questions.

Colleen Echohawk is a former KUOW board member.

Candidates invited to participate in this survey but who did not respond by deadline: Henry Clay Dennison, James Donaldson, Stan Lippmann, Casey Sixkiller, Omari Tahir-Garrett.