Important announcements for League leaders

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League of Women Voters
The League Update
August 1, 2019

She Is Me


As this summer starts to wane, our work is not slowing down. I know many of you are preparing for elections this fall and beginning celebrations of the League’s 100th anniversary. For our part, the national office is busy preparing for the launch of our online campaign to re-introduce the League of Women Voters to new audiences in our 100th year. 

This exciting campaign is called She Is Me, and it features stories of our real League members, their work, and their commitment to defending democracy with our organization. You can read all about the She Is Me campaign and see how your League can participate in the She Is Me toolkit, now available on the League Management Site. We’ll also be offering a webinar on the toolkit for interested League members.

The national office is also busy preparing for the highly anticipated re-launch of the VOTE411.org voter information website on August 14. We are proud of the new look and feel of this vital platform of our organization’s work which will reach millions of voters through 2020. 

With important celebrations, new campaigns, and the VRA anniversary next week, August kicks off a season of exciting work for our organization. I’m glad you’re along for the ride with us.

In League, 


Making Democracy Work Campaign

Census Webinar Recording and Materials Available

The policy and advocacy webinar covering the 2020 Census was well attended. A recording for those that would like to revisit the materials or view them for the first time is now available. In addition to the recording, please be sure to check out the census topic page on LWV.org and the census action kit on the League Management Site. For questions about census related activities please email advocacy@lwv.org.

Reminder: Voting Rights Vigils on Anniversary of Voting Rights Act Passage

LWVUS is cosponsoring an effort to host Voting Rights Vigils on August 6. The vigils will shed light on the impact of the Shelby County v. Holder Supreme Court decision and demand that Congress restore the voting rights protections of the Voting Rights Act. Leagues are invited to sign up to host or attend events in their communities with partner groups around the country. NOTE: These events are being held in the evening to allow the elderly and communities in the South and Southwest to participate outside of the oppressive heat, in addition to symbolicly “shine a light” on the impact of Shelby.

LWVUS Lobby Corps Visits Senate on Resolution to Establish American Democracy Month

Members of the LWVUS Lobby Corps are visiting Senate offices urging Senators to co-sponsor S. Res. 252, which would make September American Democracy Month. Thanks to the efforts of our Lobby Corps members, there are nearly 40 bipartisan sponsors on the bill! See a copy of the League’s memo in support of this legislation.

LWVUS Endorses Fair Elections Now Act

The Fair Elections Now Act, which is the small-donor-focused public financing bill that was included in HR1, was reintroduced by Senator Durbin. The League supports this legislation that will help reduce the influence of wealthy donors and big-money special interests by creating a voluntary system of public financing for Senate candidates.

League Urges Support for Census Bureau Funding in FY 2020 Budget

On July 24, the League joined a letter directed to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee urging them to support funding for the constitutionally required 2020 Census. This is the same robust funding level supported in the House version of the bill. This letter compliments a previous letter sent to the U.S. House.

Promote Your Candidate Debates and Forums on VOTE411! (Reminder)

2019 elections are well underway and so are League-sponsored candidate debates and forums! Does your League have any candidate debates or forums coming up in 2019? Promoting your events on VOTE411 can help spread the word to voters in your community. If you have any upcoming candidate debates or forums and would like us to post the information on VOTE411, please send the following information to Megan Brown (mbrown@lwv.org): event title, offices covered, date, time, location (venue name and address), and any other information voters might need.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

DEI Success Stories: LWV of Janesville (WI)

Mary Buelow is the Chair of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee of the LWV of Janesville in Wisconsin. She shared with us how her League has worked to educate its members and leadership on race-related issues in order to make their DEI work within the community more impactful.

Read more about what the LWV of Janesville has done and read past DEI Success stories

DEI Webinars

LWVUS is hosting a series of webinars on DEI in 2019.  

We will be using this series to take a deeper look at the topics we’ve been exploring for the past year and to offer tools every member can use in their League work. We encourage Leagues to watch together and make time for discussion afterward.

August 29: League History Through a DEI Lens, Presented by past LWVUS President Carolyn Jefferson-Jenkins Register

September 26: TBD Register

Recordings and resources from our previous webinars can be found on the League Management Site.

We want to hear from you!

Is your League embracing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in a new way? Do you have a special interest in this topic or expertise to share? The LWV DEI Committee, chaired by Dr. Deborah Turner, wants to hear from you. Share your questions, story or feedback by email to cdavis@lwv.org.

News of the Week

As the most voter-friendly state in the country, Minnesota has become a recent target for "voter fraud" claims. LWV of Minnesota Civic Engagement Director Nick Harper speaks to the situation in this piece from Talking Points Memo.

Last week, LWV of Texas joined a voting rights case in support of Crystal Mason-Hobbs, who was sentenced to five years in prison for mistakenly casting a vote in the 2016 election. Read our statement.

Nearly two dozen Ohio groups and individuals, including LWV of Ohio, are asking the state's top elections official for a list of voters who could be dropped from the rolls this fall, so they can try to get them re-registered. Read the story.


DC Statehood Hearing Rescheduled

The hearing on H.R. 51, the Washington DC Admission Act, has been rescheduled for September 19 in the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. LWVUS and LWVDC have put together materials for Leagues or others wishing to house parties around the Committee hearing. The materials also include a template letter-to-the-editor that you can use to adapt for your needs before or after the hearing. For questions about DC Statehood, please contact Anne Anderson of LWVDC.

League Expresses Support for Removal of ERA Ratification Deadline

In letters to the U.S. Senate and U.S. House, the League expressed support for concurrent joint resolutions that would remove the timeline for ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment (ERA). In the U.S. Senate, S.J. Res. 6 is cosponsored by Senators Murkowski and Cardin. The letter to these Senators included rationale for outlining reasons why the removal of the deadline is consistent with past Congressional actions and Supreme Court decisions.

LWVUS Endorses Climate Risk Disclosure Act

Legislation introduced in the U.S. House and Senate by Representative Casten and Senator Warren would require public companies to disclose critical information about their exposure to climate-related risks. This would help investors appropriately assess those risks, accelerate the transition from fossil fuels to cleaner and more sustainable energy sources, and reduce the chances of both environmental and financial catastrophe. The legislation passed the U.S. House Financial Services Committee on July 17, but it has not gone to the floor.

LWVUS Urges Support of The Disability Integration Act

In celebration of the 29th anniversary of the American Disabilities Act, LWVUS signed on to a letter with more than 800 organizations in support of this bipartisan and bicameral bill. The bill will protect and secure the liberty of people with disabilities and seniors from states who refuse to provide community-based services. It ensures that people with disabilities have a right to live and receive services in their own homes and will prevent disabled people from being forced into costly institutional settings. Read our letter.

Blog: UN Observer Attends High Level Political Forum 

Read a new blog from our chief UN Observer, Rosalee Keech, who had the privilege of attending the High Level Political Forum in July. This conference, which brings together government leaders from throughout the 193 member states as well as UN Agencies, gives the UN community an opportunity to take a pulse reading on topics of concern.


August Tech & Comms Webinar Canceled

The August Technology & Communications Webinar on Google analytics will be scheduled for another time in the future. Thank you for understanding.

She Is Me: 100th Anniversary Online Campaign and Toolkit

The national office is launching an exciting online campaign on August 15 called She Is Me. She Is Me is our online (digital) campaign to introduce the League of Women Voters to new audiences online in our 100th year. Check out the campaign microsite!

We’re so excited to bring you a toolkit to help you join this exciting project. The She Is Me toolkit outlines the purpose and goals of the campaign, and features social media posts, customizable graphics, and portrait photography guidelines so that you can participate at many different levels.

We’re also excited to offer a webinar further explaining the toolkit and the campaign, which will be hosted on Monday, August 5, at 2pm ET. Sign up now! If you can’t make the webinar at this time, don’t worry! A recording will be made available on the toolkit page following the scheduled presentation.

Call for Nominations for the 2020-22 LWVUS Board and Nominating Committee

Applications are now available for the 2020-22 LWVUS Board and Nominating Committee. To learn more about these amazing leadership opportunities, please review the FAQ and job descriptions for LWVUS Board and Nominating Committee or contact the LWVUS Nominating Committee at nominatingcommittee@lwv.org. Consider submitting an application or recommending another leader!

Save the Date: 2020 Convention

The 2020 Convention will be held in Washington, DC, on June 25–28. The official first call will be published in October, and we anticipate registration and hotel reservations to open in late January of 2020.

Board Best Practices

As a reminder, all League boards should review and affirm their nonpartisan policy annually. Boards should use this same opportunity to review, discuss, and update (as needed) their diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) policy. LWVUS’s nonpartisan policy and DEI policy are available online. These policies codify the values of our organization and should be understood and fully embraced by leaders throughout the organization. Questions?  Please contact membership@lwv.org.

LWVUS/EF 2019-2020 Direct Marketing Schedule

When planning your League’s fundraising efforts, please consider the LWVUS/EF direct marketing schedule. The LWVUS Development Office is pleased to share its FY2020 LWVUS/EF direct mail, telemarketing, and email fundraising calendar. Download the schedule on the League Management Site. Please share this schedule with your Development chairs to assist with planning your League’s fundraising activities. Questions should be direct to Rose Simmons (rsimmons@lwv.org).

Fundraising Training Modules

Online fundraising training and easy-to-adapt fundraising templates are only a click away on the League Management Site

Development is critical to expanding our impact. To support YOU and to grow the critical state and local mission impact work, we launched a five-part series of fundraising training modules focused on fundraising for the League’s work. Your board and development committee will find topics that give you the tools and information you need to kick up your fundraising activities.

LWV Greenwich Collaboration with Harvard Civics Project Goes National

LWV of Greenwich (CT) is pleased to announce that 50 League chapters in 21 states have selected nearly 80 outstanding high school teachers in a competitive process to attend an all-expenses-paid civics training program on the Harvard campus this August. After the training, the teachers will partner with their local Leagues to engage their communities in lively discussions about pivotal episodes in American democracy using the Harvard case study method. Any League interested in getting their US history, government, or civics teachers involved with this project can have them apply for online training at www.hbs.edu/case-method-project/contact-us.


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