The legislature finds and declares that the ability to feel safe and secure in one's own home and in one's own community is of primary importance. The legislature recognizes that certain gang-related activity can affect the safety of a considerable number of people in the rental premises and dwelling units. Therefore, such activity, although it may be occurring within an individual's home or the surrounding areas of an individual's home, becomes the community's concern.
The legislature intends that the remedy provided in RCW 59.18.510
be used solely to protect the health and safety of the community. The remedy is not a means for private citizens to bring malicious or unfounded actions against fellow tenants or residential neighbors for personal reasons. In determining whether the tenant's activity is the type prohibited under RCW 59.18.130
(9), the court should consider the totality of the circumstances, including factors such as whether there have been numerous complaints to the landlord, damage to property, police or incident reports, reports of disturbance, and arrests. An absence of any or all of these factors does not necessarily mean gang activity is not occurring. In determining whether the tenant is engaging in gang-related activity, the court should consider the purpose and intent of RCW 59.18.510
. The legislature intends to give people in the community a tool that will help them restore the health and vibrance of their community.