The Seattle NOW community came together on the evening of Wednesday, February 12th for a training led by Linda Tosti-Lane with special guest Karen Fraser.

The training began with a Washington State Civics lesson on how our bicameral legislature operates. “The way the system is set up is to kill bills, and not to pass them,” Ms. To Tosti-Lane explains. Thousands of bills get dropped in the “hopper” each legislative session, and it’s through assignments by leadership, committee work and hearings from the public for these bills that may eventually become law.

To the participants great delight, Ms. Fraser shared details of the lawmakers’ processes and norms from her own 29 years experience serving her district. Participants then were walked through how their voice matters to their elected officials. Ms. Tosti-Lane explained her work on WA State NOW’s Legislative Alerts newsletter, which is emailed weekly while lawmakers are in Session. Ms. Fraser also emphasized how important it is to an elected official to hear from her constituents as this is how important issues get a voice.

Participants were also able to learn how they, as an individual in the community, can write a bill themselves in hopes that it could make the direct change necessary in the lives of themselves and families.

For more information, please sign up for WA State NOW’s Legislative Alerts by sending an email to

The PowerPoint from this event, prepared by Linda Tosti-Lane, can be found here.