The noticeable pattern in Ellensburg City Council’s proclamations


Star Diavolikis, Senior Reporter

Ellensburg City Council has released a number of proclamations over the last few months and many appear to be similar in the way they are written.

In a March 1 meeting, the city council discussed and approved the Irish American Heritage Month proclamation and Women’s History Month proclamation. These proclamations covered the history of these groups before making the declaration to officially acknowledge these months.

The Women’s History Month proclamation covers the background regarding Women’s History Month, including the 2021 theme for Women’s History Month being “Valiant Women of the Vote: Refusing to be Silent.” The fact that Washington was the fifth state in the union to grant women the right to vote in 1910 was included.

The Irish American Heritage Month proclamation covers background in a similar fashion to the Women’s History Month proclamation. The proclamation discusses the history of Irish immigrants “first coming to this land even before our nation was founded” and provides an estimate that around 4,915 people in Kittitas County are of Irish descent.

While the proclamations all have their own individual research put into them, there does seem to be a pattern of acknowledging the background of the group mentioned, why they matter in today’s society, then ending the proclamation with the exact phrasing of other proclamations, but filled with the name of the month being identified. The City of Ellensburg website provides all proclamation documents, where this pattern can be recognized.

The ending paragraph goes as follows, “Now, Therefore, the City Council of the City of Ellensburg does hereby proclaim [month] [year] as [celebration] in Ellensburg and encourages all citizens to join in this observance by building bridges of understanding and friendship with our [group] neighbors.”

There are variants to this ending, such as the final paragraph for the proclamation discussing the November 2020 Native American Heritage Month. The only variant to the paragraph is, “…by building bridges of understanding and friendship with members of the Yakama Nation and all of our Native American neighbors.”

The Native American Heritage Month proclamation does provide more background, research and “hard numbers” into the proclamation explanation compared to other proclamations. The African American Heritage Month proclamation focuses on discussing individual notable African American people in American history while the Native American Heritage Month does not.

One recent proclamation that strays from the template provided is for September and October, 2020’s Hispanic Heritage Month. This proclamation ends with Mayor Bruce Tabb proclaiming the month on behalf of the council rather than the whole council actively proclaiming it.

“Now, Therefore, I, Bruce Tabb, Mayor of the City of Ellensburg, on behalf of the City Council, do hereby proclaim September 15 – October 15, 2020 as Hispanic Heritage Month,” the proclamation reads.