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‘Fight Not Flight.” – Coupeville SDA Rally A Success

No New Jets. No New Flights. – WE FIGHT ON

Sound Defense Alliance (SDA) rallied almost 400 Whidbey residents at the Historic Crockett Barn last Friday, April 12, 2019, in response to the Navy’s unprecedented four-fold increase in Growler FCLP operations at the Coupeville OLF. Over 700 postcards were written and mailed to Northwest Washington Congressional delegation members.

The event was co-hosted by SDA’s local member groups, including Citizens of Ebey’s Reserve (COER) and Coupeville Community Allies (CCA). The message from attendees was simple: “We won’t stand by and let jet noise destroy our community.” The crowd was solidly behind the theme of the evening: “Fight. Not Flight.”

Island County Commissioner Helen Price Johnson opened the rally and announced that she and other political leaders are pushing for verifiable real-time/on-site noise monitoring. To date, the Navy has steadfastly resisted all requests for monitoring arguing that modeling Growler noise is sufficient.

At Friday’s gathering, all agreed that the new jet training regime is not “livable.” For the Navy to achieve its desired minimum of 24,000 Growler FCLP operations at OLF Coupeville they will have to fly between 100 and 200 days each year. Training days involve hours of ear-splitting noise, rendering conversation, listening and outdoor activities impossible over Central Whidbey, which is now the primary location for Growler touch-and-go training.

SDA will continue its ongoing work with elected leaders at all levels of government to address this crisis created by military leaders in Washington D.C. who are out of touch with the people whom they serve. Speakers updated the public on the multiple pathways being pursued, including political advocacy, base-building, public education, direct action, and potential litigation being considered by an allied organization. Many organizations and individuals may be filing complaints against the Navy on a variety of related issues.

Upcoming Events:

April 30 – Building the Base: Leadership & Volunteers. Time and location TBD

May 8- Discussion of litigation to be led by COER, 6pm, Crockett Barn, Coupeville.

In response to the speakers it was clear that this crowd was not willing to give in to the Growler jet expansion. Instead, a new refrain – ‘We Will Fight On‘ concluded the evening.

There are two upcoming Plane Truths Showings, both FREE and open to the public. Click here for details.

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