Armed Militias Are Not Welcome in Olympia

Photo Courtesy of New Moon Cafe, Olympia, WA

To Our Dear Olympia Community,

In the wake of mass movements across the country which aim to dismantle systemic racism, even our small city has a role to play. As Olympia strives toward a safe, peaceful, and just world for all, we have found ourselves embedded in turmoil over how this better world can become reality.

In recent weeks, armed militias which have identified themselves with groups including American Wolf, Proud Boys, and Three-Percenters have appointed themselves as a paramilitary force to control Black Lives Matter protests. Rather than keeping us safe, these groups are bringing a large armory of guns (some of them carrying at least four per person) and other weapons into our downtown core as well as the commercial west side. These groups belong to the conservative far-right/“alt-right” and are not aligned with our town’s commitment to diversity and equality. They are using their guns and military aesthetics to intimidate Olympia into silence.
The more we find out about these militias, the more we realize that they are crafting a narrative that allows them to exploit the Black Lives Matter movement to meet their own goals of harnessing power. We in Olympia are proud to be a community of creative, critical thinkers who won’t be fooled by this right-wing trap. We know that peace and justice cannot be achieved by parading guns and threatening those who are brave enough to speak out against systemic racism.

We as a community are signing this letter in support of transformative justice and a peaceful world. We do not want armed militias patrolling our streets. We are strong enough without them. We are honored to rise to the challenge of healing the wounds of the world together.

With hearts wide open,

The Wayside Cafe
Orca Books
The Crypt
New Moon Cooperative Cafe
Dumpster Values Collective
115 Legion
Sound Audio Repair
Airbound Arts
Lengua Rica
Helsing Junction Farm
Gallery Boom
Pizza Klatch
Leafbloom Organics
Pressing On Fitness
Last Word Books
Deschutes River Cyclery
Quality Burrito
Pearl & Ink
Three Magnets Brewing
Octapas Cafe
Danger Room Comics
Rogue Teas
Olympia Gear Exchange
Stellar Juices
Tōdai Yoga
Swing Wine Bar
The Lucky Lunchbox
Ossa Skinworks
The Brotherhood Lounge
Rainy Day Records
Eastside Big Tom
Interfaith Works
Rhythm and Rye
Noping The Shop
Stonewall Youth
Radiance Herbs & Massage
The Vintage Peacock
Magic Kombucha
Phloxus Farms
Body Olympia
Burial Grounds Coffee Collective
New Traditions Fair Trade
Business Services Cooperative
Our Table
The Painted Plate
Chinese Movement and Healing Arts
Capitol Florist
Blue Heron Bakery
King Solomon’s Reef
KXXO Mixx96.1
Rainbow Health Center
Partners in Prevention Education (PiPE)
Build A Bus Home
Psychic Sister
San Francisco Street Bakery
Old School Pizzeria
The Staff Collective of the Olympia Food Coop
Community Sustaining Fund

Pizza Klatch COVID-19 Response

Due to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus pandemic, as of March 9, 2020, Pizza Klatch and its satellite groups are closed to in-person, face-to-face gatherings of youth until further notice. Pizza Klatch now has online groups available for LGBTQ+ youth. Check out our COVID-19 Response page located under both ‘Resources’ and ‘News/Events’ on our menu for information regarding our ongoing youth advocacy efforts and resources to aid and support LGBTQ+ communities during the COVID-19 crisis. If you are a student and or the parent of a student and you or your student are in need of one on one support or group support in our online klatches, our COVID-19 Response page has contact information on each of our staff, all of whom work as facilitators within our schools. If you need a picture rather than a name to recall the staff member assigned to your school, you can check out our ‘Meet Our Staff‘ page for photos along with bios of each staff member. You can also contact our general email, for any questions or concerns.

NTPS: “Pizza Klatch supports a safe space where everyone belongs!”

Huge thanks to North Thurston Public Schools for a recent piece highlighting our work within their district!

“…Through Pizza Klatch, students have a place to feel welcome and accepted. They can express themselves and talk about whatever is going on in their lives with other kids in person — an exception in today’s fast-paced, online technological social system…”

You can read the full article here.

RAIN 2019 Newsletter

RAIN (Rainbow Alliance and Inclusion Network) has released their first newsletter of 2019 and included coverage of PK’s 2019 Gayla event! The RAIN business resource group exists to help Washington State create safe and inclusive workplaces where every LGBTQ+ employee can bring their full authentic self to work, enabling them to do their best work every day for the people of Washington. The group will provide resources and support to employees and the stakeholders serviced by state agencies. You can download a pdf of the newsletter here!

Pizza Klatch is an option for Combined Fund Drive participants

The Washington State Combined Fund Drive (CFD) is Washington State’s workplace giving program for active and retired public employees. State and higher education employees are invited to give to the charity of their choice through payroll contribution and agency fundraising events.

For more than 30 years, Washington State has proven to be one of the most giving states in the nation. Each year, over 15,000 active and retired public employees pledge more than $5 million to over 1,700 local, national and global charities. That number is good enough to place Washington State third in the nation amongst state employee giving programs, an incredible feat given the fact that our great state is 13th in overall population.

CFD participants can contribute to Pizza Klatch.  Our CFD number is 1481491.

A state employee can make a contribution safely and easily through the CFD’s online system, or with a paper contribution form in any of the following ways:

Monthly Contribution
A recurring amount will be taken out of each paycheck until the employee chooses to stop.

One-time contribution
A single donation is collected and distributed to the charity of the donor’s choice.

Limited Time contribution
Donations will be taken out of each paycheck for a set amount of time as defined by the employee.

Personal check

The Combined Fund Drive campaign runs annually from the beginning of October to the end of December and is administered in over 250 different agencies and higher education institutions.

County Committees also put together events around the state that help bring donations to the charities of the CFD.

To find out more about the Washington State Combined Fund Drive, see their home page.


Pizza Klatch is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

Pizza Klatch launches at Tenino and South Sound!

Pizza Klatch Tenino

As we kick off Pizza Klatch for the 2015-16 school year, we'll be serving more pizza and support in Thurston County schools. We are excited to announce new partnerships with Tenino High School and South Sound High School, bringing confidential support and resources to 30 new LGBTQ+ youth and allies every week.

Screen Shot 2015-10-23 at 5.38.48 PMSouth Sound is a small alternative high school in Lacey that has been eagerly anticipating their chance to start Pizza Klatch. Old School Pizzaria is providing discounted pizza to the South Sound group each week.

"The first time I was late with the pizza, one of the students said, I don't really care if you bring lunch, I'm just glad you're here," said Bryan Butler, volunteer facilitator at South Sound High School. "That one actually stopped me up short."

Shawn Harris, South Sound's licensed social worker and school counselor added, "The students have bonded through the group and have become great supports for one another. Pizza Klatch is definitely something I look forward to each week!"Our Groups Button

Thirty minutes away, south of Yelm highway, volunteers April Spaulding and JennyAnn Wheeler bring Pizza Time pizza in a hot bag from downtown Olympia to Tenino High School. April, a 2003 alumni of Tenino High recalls her high school experience, "The only person in high school that was out got made fun of and bullied a lot in the locker room. I didn't see anything other than heterosexual monogamous relationships. If there had been a Pizza Klatch when I was younger, it may have given me the space to figure things out sooner."

Dave Chappell, Principal of THS, has been pleased with the addition of Pizza Klatch to their support services at school. "Our goal at Tenino High School is to provide a safe, secure learning environment for ALL our students, including LGBTQ youth. Pizza Klatch provides a safe, supportive and caring environment where students who may feel disconnected and alone can just be themselves," Chappell said.Tenino header-background

Pizza Klatch was made possible at THS with funding and support from the Bucoda-Tenino Healthy Action Team (B-THAT), a coalition of TOGETHER!. The coalition began discussions about Pizza Klatch last November and administered a survey in the Spring to gauge interest, support and/or opposition of Pizza Klatch. The survey results showed overwhelming support from students and staff, and the coalition voted to include Pizza Klatch as one of their projects this year. Stacia Wasmundt, Community Coordinator of B-THAT said, "Some of the goals of the B-THAT coalition are to increase safe and healthy opportunities for youth, build relationships and promote positive healthy futures, which aligns nicely with the mission of Pizza Klatch. So far, it seems like the students are loving not only the free pizza, but the ability to have a safe place to go every week and find support with their peers and the facilitators.” Michael VanBuskirk, counselor at THS, and Greg Meyers from True North Student Assistance and Services, ESD 113 were also integral to getting Pizza Klatch started at THS.

“I am excited to see that Pizza Klatch has had a strong student presence from the start. I introduced myself on the first day and both groups of students were extremely grateful and thanked us for having this10488152_10154407200925623_4558097183245260471_n(1) group available at their school." Wasmundt added.

TOGETHER! also provides funding for Rainier high school, who has an average of 20 student attendees so far this year (in a school of 300). It is through community partnerships like that between Pizza Klatch and TOGETHER! that allows Pizza Klatch to continue to reach students at new schools each year.