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Newsletter - December 17, 2020

LWVIN  | Published on 12/17/2020

REDISTRICTING NEWS - APPORTIONMENT 2021

The question has arisen – is the LWVUS People Powered Fair Maps (PPFM) campaign compatible with the LWVIN All IN 4 Democracy campaign? The answer is YES!The LWVUS has developed materials that lay out a strategy which can be used to enhance the LWVIN’s work within All IN 4 Democracy.
Year 2 of the PPFM effort continues with campaign building and planning by developing and implementing field plans. LWVUS encourages State and Local Leagues to frame redistricting efforts within the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) lens. Coalition building, speakers’ bureaus and lobby corps are also part of the PPFM. A new component of the PPFM campaign is storytelling. Storytelling taps into the emotional and personal connection to redistricting and building an effective story by engaging with communities most impacted by gerrymandering.
All IN 4 Democracy is LWVIN’s coalition. Building speakers bureaus and growing the lobby corps are the next steps for LWVIN and local leagues. Collecting stories will take some effort, but looking at the maps that were adopted in 2011 will give us a start lwv.org , League Management and PPFM tabs provide information to get started. As the All IN 4 Democracy Coalition begins virtual hearings in each of Indiana’s Congressional Districts, we should be ready to tell the stories collected for all to hear.
This is my third “rodeo” with redistricting. In 2011, LWVIN, AARP and CC recruited a diverse group to travel the State as the first Indiana Citizens Redistricting Commission (ICRC). ICRC members looked like Indiana, old, young, Latino, African-American, rural, urban, and various political affiliations (remember the Tea Party).LWVIN is in its best position yet, to have an impact on transparency, mapping criteria and fairness in Indiana’s redistricting efforts in 2021.

Paulette Vandegriff


ISSUE ADVOCACY

There are Indiana League advocacy teams who monitor the Indiana legislative session each year and keep interested members apprised of bills and action in the Legislature. If you want to be on any (or all) of these email lists contact the following people:

Natural Resources/Environment - Liz Solbergjlsolberg@earthlink.net
Redistricting Reform - Linda Hansonlhanson43@gmail.com
Voter Rights - Jorgena Watsonjkwatson138@gmail.com
Women's Health - Pam Lockeralandscaper@hotmail.com

"Our ClubExpress website has been active for only a week, and already it has sent out reminders to 62 of our members that they need to renew their memberships. That would be a lot of work for us to do "by hand" through emails and phone calls. I would rather save my emails and phone calls for very important communications related to redistricting reform or other League activities of great significance."
from Judy Bradford, the South Bend local President

“The ClubExpress app allowed us to combine a number of functions--membership, dues, email notifications--into one integrated platform. It was easy to learn and we had no down time when migrating. It's an excellent fit for an all-volunteer organization such as ours.”
from David Klein, the Calumet Area Treasurer

For more information on Club Express, please contact Tom Gardiner at tkga@comcast.net


LOCAL LEAGUE SPOTLIGHT
BROWNCOUNTY FOCUS ON ELECTIONS 2020
This is a new feature. Each month we will be featuring a different local League.

This article was submitted byShari Frank, President of the Brown County League.

LWV Brown County increased our voter education outreach this year, like all leagues, with voter guides on our web site, emails, fliers delivered with food distributions, virtual candidate forums, letters and articles in our local newspaper, and our first year of Vote 411.We received good feedback for the voting information we shared, but we realize that we still fall woefully short of reaching the community at large. Finding ways to increase our reach is a continuing goal.

In 2019 we worked hard to overcome local opposition to get pen/paper ballots. Paper is deemed the most secure as Linda Hanson wrote in her White Paper Report “Securing Our Elections” and bipartisan research confirms. Armed with this info on security as well as guidelines to evaluate election equipment and RFPS from the 2011-12 groundwork of LWV Bloomington Monroe-County, we shared the knowledge with our Brown County Election Board (CEB). The CEB finally agreed to include paper ballots as an option in getting bids. Lo and behold, paper ballots are the least expensive way to go, and CEB purchased paper based systems in time for the 2020 election. Indiana law doesn’t require paper ballots for nearly a decade more. How many counties in Indiana still have no paper record?

In 2020, we threw ourselves into the fray, attending CEB meetings in person, and virtually. We found our novice selves in a position needing to help educate CEB members, who are all new. Armed with the Indiana Election Administrators Manual, and creating a hotline to Indiana Election Commission staff, we walked a fine line with the CEB, but successfully advocated to protect and enforce voting protections in many instances.

In 2018 we used LWV Greater Lafayette Poll Watcher materials to become poll “media” watchers ourselves. This is our 3rd Election season as “Media Watchers”, working with our local newspaper the BC Democrat. We observed many issues both in the CEB and during elections that we plan to pursue.

In our little Brown County, we’ve been intimidated and yelled at and told no we couldn’t do something, when we knew we could. These incidents are disturbing but rare, and so minor considering the battles of our foremothers. Linda Hanson, in a discussion of our frustrations with road blocks, reminded us the League “has our backs." I just have to end with how thankful we are for being part of the larger organization.




As our centennial year winds down, we thought it would be fun to count down 19 incredible events, discoveries and moments from our commemoration. Through 2020’s many twists and turns, Hoosiers found ways to mark the suffrage centennial.Here are 19 highlights in honor of the 19th Amendment:

  1. Indiana’s commemoration kicks off at the Statehouse.On Jan.16 hundreds of people joined Commission Chair Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch to mark the 100thanniversary of the day Indiana ratified the 19th Amendment. We dedicated a new plaque marking the offices suffragists used during their long battle for the vote and unanimous resolutions marking the occasion were passed in the Indiana House and Senate. This video captures some of the day’s highlights.
  2. We Must Be Fearless: The Woman Suffrage Movement in Indiana is published.Dr. Anita Morgan’s research on the 69-year movement to guarantee women’s right to vote was critical for helping Hoosiers understand our sometimes inspiring, sometimes frustrating, always complicated past.
  3. Suffrage Block Party goes virtual, engages thousands.What a week: 16 organizations presented 40+ events attended by 4,390 people and reaching more than 100,000 afterwards. If you missed something or want to revisit a conversation, all the event recordings are now on our website.
  4. Preserving Women’s Legacy Grantees are revealed. Three communities, Angola, Michigan City and Peru, will erect permanent artworks, statues and trail signage to mark the contributions of women in their community. Discover these projects, which honor suffragists like Sojourner Truth, Naomi Bowman Talbert Anderson, Marie Stuart Edwards and more.
  5. New artworks are unveiled.“Together” by Indianapolis artist Kassie Woodworth and “nINeteenth” by Decatur artist Shelby Nower will become part of the state’s permanent art collection.
  6. New discoveries about Indiana’s Black suffragists are uncovered. Dr. Anita Morgan received one of four May Wright Sewall Fellowships to research stories of women like Carrie Barnes Ross and Frances Berry Coston. Her early findings were featured in this Indianapolis Star article and in this Suffrage Block Party talk.
  7. Indiana scholar compiles 100 years of data on women voters. Dr. Christina Wolbrecht of Notre Dame published a landmark book, A Century of Votes for Women, dispelling myths about the participation of women in the electorate.
  8. The Policy Circle goes big for suffrage.The Policy Circle published a special brief on the women’s suffrage movement in Indiana and launched it with a special event featuring Lt. Gov. Suzanne Crouch, First Lady Janet Holcomb and others at the Indiana Historical Society, along with the unveiling of a new commemorative artwork by Walter Knabe.
  9. “Securing the Vote” travels the state.Thanks to Lilly Endowment, Inc., and the Indiana Women’s Suffrage Commission, two copies of Indiana Historical Society’s new traveling exhibit about the Indiana suffrage movement have been touring the state since mid-2019. Learn how to book it here.
  10. Monroe County suffragists come into focus.Hilary Fleck, one of our May Wright Sewall Fellows, uncovered the names and stories of Bloomington-area suffrage activists. Learn some of their stories here or pop by the Monroe County History Center to see a special exhibit through March 2021.
  11. UIndy’s Fairbanks Symposium focuses on women in civic leadership. Read a recap of the day, which featured Mel Raines, Deborah Daniels, Angela Smith Jones, Kathy Cabello, Rima Shahid, Laura M. Wilson, Anne Hathaway, Kristin Jones, Amy Levander and Adrienne Slash.
  12. We Wait. debuts at the Harrison Center.Artist Gigi Salij’s moving series of portraits, ruminating on the long wait for the right to vote and the familiar scene of election day lines, debuted in March.
  13. The stories of Anderson suffragists get shared. Local researchers discovered the fascinating connections between the Spiritualists and the women’s suffrage movement.
  14. A new Grace Julian Clarke marker is unveiled. Jackie Swihart, a member of our speakers bureau who wrote her master’s thesis on Clarke, raised money for a new historic marker in Irvington, which was unveiled in November.
  15. South Bend-area suffragists star in a new exhibit. Dr. Jamie Wagman, another of our May Wright Sewall Fellows and history professor at Saint Mary’s College, worked with her students to develop a new exhibit on Michiana suffragists. It’s on display through March 21 at The History Museum of South Bend.
  16. Indiana curator tells the story of suffrage through historical objects.Jessica Jenkins, a historian and curator at Muncie’s Minnetrista museum, published Exploring Women’s Suffrage Through 50 Historic Treasures.
  17. Muncie researchers dig into the archives. Ball State University librarians built an online exhibit which includes tantalizing glimpses of Black and white chapters of the Women’s Franchise League.
  18. Forgotten trailblazer gets her due. Dr. Laura M. Wilson and her UIndy student Karlee Taylor recovered the life and career of Hariette Bailey Conn, a pioneering Black woman from Indianapolis who served in the General Assembly and Lugar mayoral administration before being appointed the state’s public defender. Wilson and Taylor received a May Wright Sewall Fellowship to support their research.
  19. Historians gather to share new research on Hoosier women. In early March, the Hoosier Women at Work conference focused on how Indiana women have worked for suffrage and citizenship. More than 100 people attended to hear the latest historical findings on Indiana women. See the line-up here.
TO SEE ALL THE LINKS IN THIS LIST OF HIGHTLIGHTS DOWNLOAD THE WORD DOCUMENT BELOW
Also, please join the state 100th Anniversary/Focus on Women’s Issues Committee!
If interested, contact Barb Schilling at 
bartim@att.net.
19 Highlights in honor of the 19th Amendment

Check out ourNEW SUFFRAGE INTERACTIVE MAPat lwvin.org/suffrage 

This just the start! Right now we have only received information on their area's suffragists from our SOUTHWESTERN local. But we want to fill the entire map so please send your suffragist material to Barbara Schilling,bartim@att.net

OTHER ITEMS OF NOTE FROM THE DECEMBER STATE BOARD MEETING

fromStateSecretary Karen Martiglio

Financial: All local leagues are now up-to-date on PMP payments. Account balances remained stable except for market fluctuations.

Club Express: With 10 of 20 sites live, 53% of members in the state are now natively on ClubExpress. Tom updated the Board on a recent LWVUS Technology and Communication Webinar. ClubExpress is one of the supported national partners. It is anticipated that the roster from locals will be able to be uploaded to the national as early as January eliminating the need for updating the national roster. Also, electronic PMP flow may be operational for the July PMP payments. Indiana is such a leader in implementing Club Express, it might serve as a national model if it is selected for the recommended national platform for member management.

Grants: Local leagues may apply for Fair Maps Grants up to $500 but will initially receive $300 (or requested amount if less than $300) until league participation can be determined. Once participation is known, additional funding may be provided on a proportional basis as funds are available up to requested amount.

Advocacy reports: The board was asked to endorse the document “EDUCATING FOR DEMOCRACY DEMANDS EDUCATING AGAINST WHITE SUPREMACY: A Statement by U.S. Educators & Educational Scholars”, which speaks to reject the renewed calls to deny or ignore the legacies and systems of racism that have long defined and shaped U.S. schools and society and that continue to do so.” This was met with LWVIN Board approval.

Virtual LWVIN Convention in the spring:Everyone agreed we will still be virtual for next April. Barb is on the planning committee and we are in the pre-planning phase which will start after the election.


READ THESE!

Here are three stimulating book recommendations for your holiday reading:

“The Fire is Among Us, James Baldwin, William F. Buckley Jr., and the Debate over Race in America”by Nicholas Buccola
“How the clash between the Civil Rights firebrand and the father of Conservatism continues to illuminate America’s racial divide.” (book jacket)

“Give Us the Ballot: The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America”byAri Berman
This book “is an engrossing narrative history...showing that the power to define the scope of voting rights in America has shifted from Congress to the courts.” (NYTimes)

“March” (trilogy) by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, and Nate Powell
These books are an award winning, best selling set of graphic novels which recount John Lewis’ life in the Civil Rights Movement.

Do you have a book you would like to share with League members? Please contact Barb Schilling,bartim@att.net.

SAVE THE DATE! Sunday February 14!

We will be virtually celebrating the League with aspecial Zoom party.

More information to come.