Emily Zisette, People’s Community Medics Seattle

Seattle has faced an increase in gun violence in predominantly black and brown communities, creating an urgent need to make sure people are equipped with the skills to respond in a positive manner. Emily Zisette and Seattle community members are offering local trainings to address and combat these issues.

The People’s Community Medics was established in Oakland in 2011 by a collective of volunteers after the murder of Oscar Grant. They conduct first responder trainings for interventions around gunshot wounds, seizures and other commonly-seen ailments. One of the project’s goals is to make sure community members don’t have to solely depend upon the State to assist them when a medical emergency is in progress and that there is an effective people centered alternative.

Emily states, “Conducting first responder trainings will not only equip community members with valuable skills on how to respond when such incidents take place, but also offer a potential space for dialogue around the traumas sustained when such incidents unfold….bringing people together in acquiring skills for self-reliance and sustenance.”

At their workshops, members of The People’s Community Medics hand out free first aid packets that have gloves, gauze, an instruction sheet in English, Spanish and Mandarin, emergen-C (for diabetics) and a “know your rights” pocket card. As resistance to State violence has increased, the People’s Community Medics also shares knowledge of how to deal with police chemicals like tear gas and pepper spray.

To learn more about The People’s Community Medics, visit their Website and Facebook page.

GRANT AWARD DATE: September 10, 2015