Suzan Requa - LWVC Convention 2019 notes

Suzan Requa - LWVC Convention 2019 notes

LWVC State Convention

Pasadena, CA Thursday, May 30th to Sunday, June 2nd, 2019

LWVDV President’s Notes June 30, 2019 

Key Learnings, the Good News and Next Steps

We tried something unique for our local LWVDV and state LWVC this year, we provided “scholarships” for new and/or diverse members who wanted to participate actively with the league.  We had 4 very new members and 2 members still getting oriented to the full view of activity in the League and 2 of us in lifelong learning who attended with 3 scholarships provided. 

The experience fostered best case team building, provided an overview of how the LWVC works and, importantly, showcased local leagues’ successes in building skills and targeting advocacy with democratic processes for successful community solutions.

LWV Conventions are high energy, focused on generating genuine enthusiasm and networking for activism in our communities. 

One of our favorite, most engaging and thought provoking workshops was titled,

“Listening Across our Differences.”

Here are some of the important points that were part of the presentation and discussion:

“I want my candidate to:

  • Be respectful of others in speech and behavior
  • Take responsibility for personal behavior, speech, and actions
  • Speak the truth and act with integrity
  • Promote civility in political discourse
  • Run a positive campaign by focusing on supported and opposed policies.”

I will:

  • Be respectful of others in speech and behavior
  • Take responsibility for personal behavior, attitude, and actions
  • Promote civility through everyday interactions
  • Listen fully and attentively to the speaker, seeking to understand them
  • Practice non-violence, using words to inspire change


What Does the Data Say (about Civility- Average across the country, Democrats, Republicans)

93%     Civility Problem in our Country

84%     Experience Incivility

83%     Incivility leads to Intolerance of Free Speech

79%     Incivility is leading to less political engagement

[Weber Shandwick  Annual Civility in America  Survey 2016 & 2018.]

The Most Common Sources of Stress

63% The Future of our Nation                                                                                                                                                                      

62% Money

61% Work

57% Current Political Climate

51% Violence and Crime

[American Psychological Association]

“It doesn’t help to listen carefully if you only listen for what you already know.”

Unbiased news doesn’t exist –

“Free people from filter bubbles so they can better understand the world -and each other.”

The Fear Factor: 

Do you believe the members of the other party are a threat to the United States and its people?  65% of the Democrats and 62% of the Republicans polled felt a very serious to somewhat series threat

2018 American Institutional Confidence Poll, conducted by YouGov. sponsored by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Georgetown University’s Bakeer for Leadership & Governance and conducted in June and July 2018.

The most helpful part of the presentation and discussion provided these thoughtful challenges to stereotypes to create a dynamic for change and also included proven methods toward common understanding and civil engagement.

LWV& LWVC, #ReviveCivility and University of Arizona, National Institute for Civil Discourse

Caucus: Takeaways from the United Nations CSW 63

Takeaways from the UN CSW63


The League of Women Voters has actively worked with the United Nations since the 1940’s!

  1920 — First LWV convention   Called for ‘adhesion of the US to the League of Nations with the least possible delay’   Early 1940s — LWV worked to generate public support for the United Nations   To establish a ‘post-war organization for peace to include all peoples, regardless of race, religion, or political persuasion’   1945 — President Truman invited LWVUS to be a UN Observer group   One of 42 NGOs to serve as consultants to the US delegation to the UN LWV continues to have an Observer Program at the United Nations

Dedicated exclusively to promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women

Functional commission of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)

Commission on the Status of Women-First major CSW action: Successfully argued against reference to “men” as a synonym for humanity on the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the UN in 1948.   From : All men are created equal   To: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights


• International treaty adopted in 1979 by UN General Assembly

“International bill of rights for women”

• Discrimination is “...any distinction, exclusion or restriction made on the basis of sex which has the effect or purpose of impairing or nullifying the recognition, enjoyment or exercise by women, irrespective of their marital status, on a basis of equality of men and women, of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the political, economic, social, cultural, civil or any other field.“

• Ratified by 189 countries, but not: • United States • Palau • Iran • Somalia • Tonga • Sudan


The ‘gold standard’ for policies to achieve gender equality and women’s empowerment

   “The Platform for Action imagines a world where each woman and girl can exercise her freedoms and choices, and realize all her rights, such as to live free from violence, to go to school, to participate in decisions and to earn equal pay for equal work.”   12 critical areas for concern, including   Access to education and health care   Participation and decision-making in political and economic sphere   Protection of human rights of the girl child   Gender inequalities in management of natural resources and the environment

LWV Delegates •Virginia Alecci (NJ) •Jennifer Avina (San Diego) •Keller Barron (SC) •ErinLeigh Darnley (CT) •Sheila Denn (NC) •Leah Edwards (San Fran) •Allyson Haut (IL) •Roxanne Hughes-Wheatland (MD) •Sue Khalaieff (IL) •Jacquie Lightcap (KAN) •Savanna Mapelli (PA) •Liz Milner (NJ) •Kathleen Montgomery (OC) •Joanne Moore (CT) •Nilam Patel (AZ) •Anu Sahai (VA) •Susan Sherer (PA) •Michelle Thorne (IL) •Jennifer Waggoner (SF)

LWV UN Observer Corp •Rosalee Keech – Chief Observer (NJ) •Judy Schachter (NY) •Chris Sagona (NJ)

 •Robin Tokmakian (CA) •Jill Follows (VA) •Michelle Dorsey (AZ)

***These excerpts from a power point presentation provided by UN Delegates, Jennifer Avina and Leah Edwards were part of an outstanding presentation on the LWV and the UN.  The discussion was so heartening and inspiring, in spite of our contrary U.S. position.  I had no idea that the LWV was involved at the UN.  This work effort is making a difference for women and especially helping women to get an education in international locations around the world.

Did you know you can apply to be a delegate?  What a unique opportunity and another level of challenge for our democratic values and our support of women in political leadership roles as well as meeting human rights goals.