Remember: Plan ahead. Stay safe. Make your voice heard on Election Day.
LWVLA President Mary Nugent and Nora Garland attended the 54th LWV National Convention as delegates. Highlights of the conventions are now available here.
Welcome, Dr. Deborah Turner
20th National President of the League of Women Voters
You can view Dr. Turner's closing remarks at the convention here.
She outlined her "vision for the next biennium, including making VOTE411 a household name, deepening our diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) work, and truly becoming an intergenerational enterprise."
LWV's CEO Virginia Kase moderated this discussion as the panel of experts spoke about what needs to be done to expand the vote and make our democracy representative of all. Panelists include:
Mayor Muriel Bowser of D.C.,
Valerie B. Jarrett of When We All Vote,
Allison Riggs of the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, and
Alejandra Y. Castillo of YWCA USA.
(Click on the poster below to find the video on Facebook. Click on WATCH NOW.)
LWV National Convention 2020
While white people may want to address racism, it is often difficult and uncomfortable to know where to begin. And if one claims to have faith in God or a Higher Power, what does it mean to be a person of faith in a system fraught with racism, hatred and bias? Join us via Zoom as we talk with La Crosse resident Keonte Turner.
Click on the poster to register for this conversation. The cost is $7 per person. More information is available on Facebook here.
This series is co-sponsored by the FSPA Office of Mission Integration and the FSC.
Tuesday, July 14
7 - 8 PM
Volunteers Needed to Provide Voter Assistance for Upcoming Elections
Voter Helpline Volunteers
The LWV Dane County through the auspices of the Dane County Voter ID Coalition, maintains a free helpline that voters throughout the state can call for assistance with voting questions including information about the absentee voting witness requirement. The Helpline number (608-285-2141) is advertised throughout the state, and many people from outside of Dane County call for assistance. While most calls can be answered by Dane County volunteers, some cannot. These include people seeking rides to or assistance while at the local DMVs to obtain an ID, and also those needing help applying for absentee ballots and getting a witness signature. The Dane County League would like to identify local volunteers who could occasionally provide on-site assistance to voters living in the same region. Volunteers interested in helping should contact Marian Matthews (email@example.com).
Purge List Phone Bank Volunteers
LWVWI is working with our Wisconsin Voting Rights Coalition partners to coordinate a statewide nonpartisan effort to ensure every voter on the purge list is contacted. We are in need of volunteers who are knowledgeable about the voter registration process and willing to call voters. We will provide training and a call script. If you'd like to volunteer for this opportunity, please sign up here.
Absentee Voter Engagement Volunteers
Starting in July, LWVWI will be partnering again with Wisconsin Conservation Voices to reach out to voters with information about absentee voting via text message through an app called Hustle - We’re looking for some League volunteers to help with this. This is a great opportunity to connect with voters from the safety of your home.
This opportunity is for people who are familiar with the absentee voting process (you can read up on it here and here) and are comfortable with using apps on cell phones. We will provide training on how to use the app. Once you’re trained, the volunteer schedule is very flexible. If you’d like to volunteer for this opportunity, please sign up here.
LWVLA Urges Adherence to Wisconsin Fair Maps Pledge
Thank you to the voters of La Crosse, Vernon, Trempealeau, and Monroe County who voted "Yes" to Fair Maps referendums in April 2019 and April 2020. The overwhelming Yes votes (+70%) express the will of the people in ending gerrymandering in Wisconsin. As voters plan for the August Primary and November General Election, invite legislative candidates to commit their support for Fair Maps in Wisconsin, "I pledge to support and advance fair redistricting that is transparent, non-discriminatory, and politically impartial."
The Wisconsin League of Women Voters has advocated for a nonpartisan redistricting process for decades. The League's voter guide on VOTE411.org is a nonpartisan source of candidate information including a candidate's position on redistricting. Voters can read and compare candidates’ verbatim responses to the League’s redistricting question on Vote411.org and be fully prepared to cast their ballot as an informed voter.
Voters are also invited to take the Wisconsin Fair Maps Coalition pledge: “I believe that Wisconsin should have a level playing field and fair elections. That’s why I pledge to vote only for candidates who promise to support fair maps legislation, a fair redrawing in 2021, and who will vote to ban partisan gerrymandering.”
Join the League of Women Voters and the Fair Maps Coalition to end gerrymandering in Wisconsin. For more information: www.lwvlacrosse.org . Every voice should be heard and every vote should count equally!
Mary Nugent, President
League of Women Voters of the La Crosse Area
In partnership with the National Conference on Citizenship, the first-ever report on Wisconsin’s civic health has been released. With the release of this report, Civic Health in Wisconsin: Connectedness in Context, Wisconsin joins 30 other U.S. states in measuring civic health, laying the groundwork for tracking changes and improvements.
"Civic health” is a term that refers to the degree to which citizens participate in their communities, from local and state governance to interactions with friends or family. Civic health also relates to the overall well-being of neighborhoods, communities, states, and the nation.
This publication also marks the beginning of a Wisconsin civic health initiative, which will mobilize these data to strengthen and catalyze civic engagement efforts in Wisconsin communities. You can read the whole report here.
LWV of WI Reports "Widespread Confusion and Numerous Obstacles" in April Election
The LWVWI and Wisconsin Election Protection released a report based on responses from about 1000 Wisconsin voters documenting numerous problems voting in the April election. Major shortcomings included:
The manner in which mail absentee ballots were requested, distributed, processed, completed and received....
A critical lack of clear and consistent information for citizens on the absentee voting process....
Restrictions and limits on early voting, sudden loss of poll workers and last minute consolidation of polling places, which created barriers for those needing to vote in person; and
During in-person voting, a lack of social distancing, unsanitary polling locations, and barriers to curbside voting.
The full report can be read here.
LWV Upper Mississippi River Region News
The May 30 UMRR Annual Meeting focused on Chicago's Impacts on the Mississippi. Our speakers were Debra Shore and Kelly McGinnis - their talks were illuminating, insightful and inspiring.
Videos of both talks are available here. (Scroll down.)
The League of Women Voters joined more than 50 organizations on an amicus brief in Bostock v. Georgia & Harris Funeral Homes v. EEOC. The LWV president Chris Carson issued the following statement in response to this important ruling:
“Never again can a person be discriminated against at work due to their sexual orientation or gender identity. This landmark victory provides long overdue protections for LGBTQ people in education, housing, and healthcare. We cheer the efforts of LGBTQ activists who have long fought for legal protection on behalf of their community.
“While we celebrate this milestone, we know the fight continues. This decision affords much needed nondiscrimination protections within the workplace, yet we recognize that the LGBTQ community still faces numerous challenges, including the threat of hate crimes and identity-based violence—with higher rates of violence against Black trans women.
“The League of Women Voters stands with the LGBTQ community in celebrating this step toward progress, and we will continue advocating for equal protection under the law.”
League Joins Letter Urging Increased Election System Security
Recent news reports have disclosed troubling weaknesses in commercially marketed voting systems and disturbing conduct by voting system vendors, raising significant questions. Voting system vendors have operated with little oversight and no regulation for decades. Given the gravity and urgency of this issue, LWVUS joined partners urging Senate committees to hold a hearing on election system security. Read our letter here.
LWVUS Developed Guidance on Protest Participation
This past week, people from throughout the country exercised their First Amendment right in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. Members planning to participate in other protests in the coming weeks may not really be sure how to “show up” at a public demonstration. For that reason, LWUS developed a resource for you on How to be Good Allies at the Protests.
LWVUS Joins Letter to UN Human Rights Commission
The LWVUS UN observers joined a coalition letter asking the United Nations Human Rights Council to conduct an inquiry into the recent violence against African Americans. New justice reform legislation is also being introduced, and LWVUS will be evaluating these bills for opportunities to lean in.