Lacey officially allows the flying of equity flags

Council debate ends in 5-2 vote


After a heated argument during the council meeting on Thursday, September 15, Lacey officially approved the proposed amendments to the existing Flag Policy, including additional flags to be flown in the city.

The Commission on Equity (COE) recommended the amendment of the Flag Policy, Section 5.12 of the Council Policies and Procedures Manual, to the council at a July 25 meeting. The recommendations include:

  • Displaying the Progress Pride Flag – June 1 to June 30 (with the noted exception of when the Juneteenth Flag is displayed)
  • Displaying the Juneteenth Flag – the third weekend to June 19 or June 19 through the third weekend at the Regional Athletic Complex and City Hall
  • Displaying the Nisqually Tribe Flag – November 1 to November 15, with consent 
  • Displaying the Squaxin Tribe Flag – November 16 to November 30, with consent

If other groups want to display their flags at a certain period, the council may seek the opinion of the COE.

Councilmembers Lenny Greenstein and Ed Kunkel opposed the amendments, saying the "special interests flag” flying is discriminatory since the United States flag already represents all community members.

"Special interests flag draw away from the intent of one American flag. This is a discriminatory practice, and I think we just need to stick with the basics," said Kunkel.

Greenstein said he does not disagree with flying certain flags but is concerned that other flags are not being displayed equally.

"I believe this is a better policy than the current, but this is still not a good policy," said Greenstein.

Mayor Andy Ryder, Deputy Mayor Malcolm Miller, and councilmembers Michael Steadman, Robin Vazquez, and Carolyn Cox all voted in favor of the amendments.

"Nisqually and Squaxin were around before the United States; we are on their property. To say that they are 'special interests' is shocking," said Ryder.

As for the Juneteenth Flag and the Progress Flag, Ryder said these are also not special interest flags because they represent individuals under the United States who have been discriminated against.

"There is nothing wrong with recognizing equity," added Ryder.

Carolyn Cox said she favors the Flag Policy's updates because "the reason why these particular flags are being flown is that these groups have been routinely discriminated against."

Agreeing with her fellow councilmembers, Vazquez added that flying the flags sends a signal that people should feel that "they belong in the community and that we are trying to make people feel safer."


9 comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here

  • JulesJames

    So how many people are needed to gain approval for flying a non-American flag? Asking for a Confederate friend.

    Monday, September 19, 2022 Report this

  • bobkat

    I'm the direct descendant of Irish immigrants who were bitterly discriminated against by the "majority" when they initially arrived in this country. I want to see the flag of the Irish Republic (or maybe Sinn Fein) displayed during St. Patrick's Day. SHEESH!!!

    Monday, September 19, 2022 Report this

  • Claire

    All but 2 members of the Lacey City Council are out of touch with the citizens of Lacey. The Lacey City Council is trying to be Woke and too involved with virtue signalling.

    Monday, September 19, 2022 Report this

  • Southsoundguy

    I can’t top these guys.^^^

    Monday, September 19, 2022 Report this

  • lookoutmtn

    Please fly my 'Norman' - William the Conqueror flag to represent we 'Normans' in the northwest. The Queens Standard will do.

    Monday, September 19, 2022 Report this

  • Kruz81

    Yes, the American flag should but everyone must feel special and the lgbtghfd is on top of that heap. And dont dare say they are not special and shouldnt have their flag up. Be damned if you had a straight flag.

    Monday, September 19, 2022 Report this

  • AugieH

    Isn't that the Washington State flag on the right behind the council? Isn't George Washington depicted on it? Didn't he own slaves? SHAME! Aren't those who would want the BLM flag OUTRAGED?

    Monday, September 19, 2022 Report this

  • pheong

    So, which members approved of the yearly pseudo-Nazi rally we see from early May now into mid-September? The Lions Club was granted permission to display a jingoistic number of flags on Lacey lightpoles on many main thoroughfares. I don't travel through Lacey nor spend my money there during these times. Who are the Lacey council members to ram that symbol in our faces 5 month a year? What is it supposed to mean? To me, such displays actually dilute the meaning of the flag by turning it into someone's political billy club.

    Using the city property to further personal goals is counter to Lacey's basic city codes.

    This decision opens up a potential floodgate of suits from other special interest groups who want their own flag displayed. The pseudo Nazi rally flags are bad enough.

    Tuesday, September 20, 2022 Report this

  • username73737737

    the LGBT flag should not be displayed on city or government property

    Friday, October 7, 2022 Report this