Robert A. Harvie Social Justice Lecture Series

Friday, February 19 at 4:00 p.m., Harned Hall

The speaker will be Washington State Senator Ed Murray. Senator Murray’s talk will focus on the pending bill to abolish the death penalty in Washington and other current legislative matters.

Senator Murray (D-43rd District, Seattle) has been a member of the Washington State Legislature for the past twelve years and a state senator since 2006. As chair of the House Capital Budget Committee, then-Representative Murray led the effort for a substantial increase in funding for community college construction and for doubling the funding for low-income housing, housing for the developmentally disabled and victims of domestic violence. His commitment to environmental concerns resulted in a significant increase in funding dedicated to such programs as the Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program, the Trust Land Transfer, and salmon restoration. During his four years as chair of the House Transportation Committee, Murray forged a legislative consensus on two historic transportation packages in 2003 and 2005 – resulting in the first new revenue for transportation in 13 years. He was also a prime sponsor for legislation requiring cleaner auto emission standards in our state.

While a House member, Murray led the successful effort to pass civil rights legislation to protect gay and lesbian Washingtonians from discrimination in employment, housing, and financial transactions. The 2006 passage of this bill – and several memorable speeches – successfully ended an almost 30-year effort. In 2008, a second bill that vastly expands these rights, responsibilities, and protections also successfully passed and was signed into law. Sen. Murray serves on the Health and Long-Term Care Committee and the Rules Committee, and as Majority Caucus Chair. Sen. Murray has received numerous accolades and awards for his work in a number of areas including transportation, civil rights, education, health care, and the environment. Currently, Sen. Murray is the leading sponsor of Washington SB 5476, a bill to abolish the death penalty in the state.

College of Arts and Sciences