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League Newsletter July 2014

LWV logo
The League of Women Voters
of the Princeton Area
 Volume 29  Issue 1
  July 2014

   In This Issue

    Annual Meeting

    LWVUS Convention
    Charter School Update Study



  2014-15 Calendar

  Monthly Meetings  

    September 9, 7 PM
        Suzanne Patterson Building

    October 14, 7 PM
        Suzanne Patterson Building

    November 11, 7 PM
        Suzanne Patterson Building

    December 9, 7 PM
        Suzanne Patterson Building

    January 13, 7 PM
        Suzanne Patterson Building

    February 10, Noon
        Mary Jacobs Library

    March 10, Noon
        Mary Jacobs Library

    April 14, 7 PM
        Suzanne Patterson Building

    June 8

        Annual Meeting and Dinner

    Special Events

    August 26
        Women's Equality Day    

    September Saturdays
        Voter Registration
        WW Farmers' Market
        Saturdays in September

    September and October
     Voter Registration        
        Princeton Farmers' Market
        and on Statewide
        Voter Registration Weekend
        in Princeton and Montgomery
        Back to League Night



The League of Women Voters
of the Princeton Area

welcomes information
about issues

in our League area and
encourages comments at



Annual Meeting 
The Annual Meeting and Dinner took place at Salt Creek Grille on Monday, June 16 and was attended by thirty members and guests. During a short business meeting, the 2014-15 budget, local positions, and the leadership committee were unanimously approved. Lee Forbes, who had just returned from the LWVUS Convention in Dallas, reported on three big successes for NJ at the convention: national adoption of our Human Trafficking position, the High Visibility Award for our Hurricane Sandy documentary, and election of Rosalee Keech of the Montville league to the LWVUS Board. 

CornellBrooks-smIngrid Reed introduced the speaker, Cornell William Brooks, Esq.,who was recently selected to be President and CEO of the NAACP, and is currently President and CEO of the New Jersey Institute for Social Justice. Both Ingrid and Mr. Brooks urged League members to become familiar with and to support the Institute, which gives a voice to the voiceless in urban communities. A law against predatory lending, a youth court to keep juveniles in school and their homes rather than in detention, and a prison re-entry program are among the Institute's achievements. Mr. Brooks described it as a “think and do tank,” which not only writes reports but also hires and trains people.

Mr. Brooks's topic, “The Beloved Community Behind Bars: A Dream Deferred,” focussed on the “Ban the Box” movement. Because having a criminal record, for even the smallest offense, severely impacts the chances for employment, Mr. Brooks supports banning the “box,” the question on job applications that asks “Have you ever been arrested or convicted of a crime?” He urged League members to make people understand the importance of the Ban the Box movement and to advocate for passage of the Opportunity to Compete Act. Click here to read more about the speech and the meeting.

LWV National Convention and National Positions
by Lee Forbes

Forbes_LWV Back to LeagueThis year’s national convention was held in Dallas, June 6-10, attended by 643 voting delegates representing 47 states and DC. We had 18 delegates from NJ.

I want to thank Frida for hosting a luncheon where I was able to share lots of details on what occurred over the four days of continuous speakers, caucuses, workshops, and plenary sessions. Because many of the actions taken are documented in the links at the LWVUS website, I will mention just a few of the highlights and takeaways that seemed of particular interest and opportunity for our local members.

Three big successes for NJ were the overwhelming approval of the Human Trafficking position, LWVNJ winning the High Visibility Award for the Hurricane Sandy documentary, and election of NJ member Rosalee Keech to the LWVUS Board.

In addition to the Human Trafficking position, the delegates also approved positions on capping carbon emissions and a three part study and review of our Democratic infrastructure.  Detailed info is on the LWVUS website

It was fascinating to see the League campaign rules and debate format at its best in the challenge to Elizabeth McNamara’s nomination as President. I wish all political campaigns were run like this!

Also available on the website are some excellent handouts from the workshops on using social media, fundraising, leadership, and collaboration. Be sure to look up the excellent primer on Money in Politics: Developing a Common Understanding of the Issues. Several workshops and caucuses delved into this area.

Another caucus that I found particularly interesting was the one on the Affordable Care Act. There was a good video on the subject, and how single-payer came about in Canada. The caucus was led by a member who is a doctor in California and leads regular conference calls on ACA and improved Medicare for all. Some other caucuses were on climate change, living wage, restoring voting to felons, human trafficking, money in politics and redistricting.

Last, but not least were the wonderful ideas from other Leagues on advocacy issues, membership activities, fundraising, and outreach to citizens and schools to raise the level of awareness of how government works and the importance of each citizen’s participation.  We discussed some of these at the luncheon and I look forward to us following through on some of the ideas. The best part of each convention is the inspiration and ideas from seeing the wonderful work being done by the League across the country and realizing this work is more important than ever.

Click here to read a report about the convention by Toni Zimmer, President, LWVNJ, and Kerry Margaret Butch, Executive Director, LWVNJ.

NJ Charter School Update Study
Materials for the Charter Schools Update Study have been prepared by the LWVNJ Education Committee and approved by the LWVNJ Board. Please click here to read three documents that comprise the study: Discussion Guide for Leaders, Appendix with References, and Study Guide with Consensus Questions.

Local Leagues will have until November 15, 2014 to conduct the study and submit results to the LWVNJ office.

Meetings for the Coming Year
The LWV-Princeton Area plans to meet in the evening at the Suzanne Patterson Building for all months except February and March, when we will meet at the Mary Jacobs Library in Rocky Hill. For a listing of meetings and events throughout the year, click here.
Our first meeting of the year will be on Tuesday, September 9, 2014 at 7 PM in the Suzanne Patterson Building.

Summaries of LWV-Princeton Area monthly meetings may be found at

Reminders about upcoming events will continue to be sent by email, but everyone should go to the League website and click on rss-button Subscribe to be sure of missing nothing.