Leaders Update 2020 February

Leaders Update 2020 February

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February 2020

Table of Contents
A Message From LWVUS on Copyright Permissions
Schools & Communities First
Voter Service
LWVC/EF Post Board Summary

President's Letter

Hello League members!

Happy 100th Birthday League of Women Voters! It is an honor to be part of an organization that honors and furthers the legacy of women who understood that being allowed to exercise the right to vote was only the first step toward full participation by all Americans in our democracy. 

As your League celebrates the event and participates in the Women Power the Vote Day of Action events please take photos... lots and lots of photos. Share them on your social media accounts. Make noise about what you are doing so that your communities know that the League is still at work, as strong and vibrant as ever.  

Please send your photos to our eleslie [at] lwvc.org">Communications Manager Elizabeth Leslie so that they can appear on LWVC social media.   

Also please read the message from LWVUS about using potentially copyrighted material in your presentations and social media.  LWVUS has good suggestions on what can safely be used.

Even as we are celebrating, the work of League continues! The March primary elections offer many challenges to the voter such as understanding the presidential primary when the voter claims No Party Preference, the new concept of vote centers, a confusingly numbered proposition (“Prop 13? No, not that Prop 13! This is a school bond issue”) and the ever present “Who are these people on my ballot?” You all are rising to the challenge with your voter service activities. You are continuing the League legacy of working to give voters the knowledge and the confidence to participate in our democracy. Bravo!

League Advocacy doesn’t stop because elections are at hand. The process of gathering signatures to place Schools and Communities First on the November 2020 ballot is well underway and the deadline is coming up.  See Helen Hutchison’s report for current status. Get your petitions in quickly so that verification of signatures is done in a timely and orderly way. Thanks for your work on this.  

Our advocacy team continues work under the Capitol dome during this second half of the two year legislative session. We are working to make sure all have the ability to participate in elections and in public life, to deal with the housing shortage, with climate change, and to stay aware of issues as they work through the legislative process. Learn more about how Advocacy works so that League continues to be an effective advocate.   

Last, but by no means least, please welcome our new Executive Director Stephanie Doute to the grand legacy of the League of Women Voters. Stephanie brings us strong executive director skills and a commitment to League’s legacy and promise of creating a more perfect democracy. We are thrilled that she joined League!

As you do the work of the League, please remember this: A representative democracy only works when all are represented. We are most effective and impactful in our voter service and advocacy work when the League looks like California. We will continue our excellent voter service work, we will continue to deepen our advocacy impact, and we will continue to expand our equity work.

Looking forward to the next 100 years!

P.S.  Take a look at new LWV merchandise! With the themes of 100 Years of Women Voting and Women Power the Vote these items can be used well beyond LWVs and the 19th Amendment’s Centennials. There is something for everyone and everything, including cell phone covers and clothes for babies and dogs!


Carol Moon Goldberg

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A Message From LWVUS on Copyright Permissions

Hello League Leaders,

As many Leagues are planning and printing items for the 100th, this is a good time to remind everyone about copyright permissions as they relate to images. 

Using photos (including historical images) and graphics in League materials – including printed posters, social media posts, external presentations, and newsletters – without the appropriate permissions and licensing can expose the League to legal action or hefty fines. Regarding historical images, there is conflicting information on when images are released into the public domain. This often depends on the original source of the image. We urge you to err on the side of caution and, if you aren't 100% sure an image is in the public domain, do not use it.

Copyright infringement can lead to penalties regardless of the infringer’s knowledge or intent. Even if your League has used photos in the past without permission, you can still be charged thousands of dollars in retroactive licensing fees. A few local Leagues have recently been threatened with legal action for improper use of images and fined several hundreds of dollars. Incidents like these are not unique, and all Leagues should make efforts to avoid these types of situations. To help Leagues do so, here are some recommendations from LWVUS: 

  1. Use your own images. You always have ownership of the photos you take. If you are photographing or filming non-League individuals at events or in public, use our photo release forms to get written permission and keep them on file for up to three years. 
  2. Use images from the LWVUS Flickr site. All of these images are owned by the League of Women Voters and licensed for use by local and state Leagues. The historical images that LWV owns are in a separate historical images album on that flickr site and Leagues are welcome to use these for League content.
  3. Use free stock photos from legitimate websites that are licensed for public use. Pay special attention to any requirements on these images. Some images require an image credit back to the website and/or photographer. Here is a list of several of these reputable free image sources.

Please share this message with your members and leaders involved in communications for your local and state Leagues. Please also consider including this guidance in any communications training and/or newsletter for your Leagues. 

If you think your League is currently using images for which you do not have legal permission, we urge you to reach out to your legal partners. If you have questions about LWVUS’s recommendations, please don’t hesitate to contact the Communications Department at communications [at] lwv.org.

Thank you for your help in protecting the League’s brand and ensuring our compliance with copyright laws.

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2020 started with a successful Advocacy Teach-In and Tune-Up with League members from throughout California attending an energetic full-day in Sacramento, learning about how the League forms positions, takes action, the state legislative process and how to understand and analyze legislation.  To learn more, check out the LWVC Advocacy Dashboard for resources and information. To get a sense of how the Dashboard is structured, we recommend watching this webinar which can also be found on the homepage under the section New to the Advocacy Dashboard?  

Nearly 500 League members responded to the  LWVC Action Alert to call legislators to support SB50 -- a controversial but important housing bill.  Unfortunately, by the end of January, the bill failed to move forward. Housing and Homelessness is a state legislative priority.  Read more about why the League supported this legislation. We expect other housing bills to be considered and will follow those.

The League continues to work to move ACA 6 forward. This legislation, along with companion bill AB646, would expand voting rights for nearly 50,000 Californians who are on parole and/or have their voting rights restored after serving their prison or jail sentences. Both bills are in the Senate and expected to move forward to the Elections Committee. If passed, it will be on the November 2020 ballot. More about ACA 6.

It's still early in the legislative session in California.  Stay on the lookout for Action Alerts and information about bills the League will be co-sponsoring or supporting.

Vote with the League on Proposition 13!

Legislative Interviews 

Local Leagues should also be scheduling and meeting with their local state legislators. The deadline for submitting reports is April 15.  Here's the Legislative Interview Packet.

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Schools & Communities First

Return all your petitions!

Please, please turn in all your petitions – whether they are full or not – at least once a week. Our petition checker will be overwhelmed if we all wait for the deadline.

Final push: get those signatures!

We’re in the final weeks. Please make sure we get every signature possible!

The deadline to turn in petitions is coming soon: Monday, March 16. Mail them to the LWVC office, or turn them in to a local hub.

Do you need more petitions? Sign up here or reach out to Andrew Muse-Fisher at amusefisher [at] lwvc.org

Where and how to turn in petitions:

Mail signed petitions to the LWVC office or deliver them into a local hub. If you submit your petitions to a hub, let us know how many signatures you submit so that we can keep track of your League’s efforts. 

To make sure the League gets credit for those signatures, write LW in the boxes at the very bottom right of the petitions next to the letters “GEN.”

Common signature and petition errors:

In order for signatures to count, the petition must be filled out correctly and completely.

  • The circulator must complete the “Declaration of Circulator” box at the bottom of each petition. They must also list their entire residence address, including street, city, state, and zip code).
  • Make sure petition circulators aren’t gathering duplicate signatures. They can do this by confirming with each signer that they haven’t already signed the S&CF petition this year. Duplicate signatures are not only invalid -- they also count against us. 
  • There is a line on the back of the form where you must list the county where those filling out the petition reside. This is in addition to the county line on the front side of the petition. This is the most commonly skipped item.

Do you need more outreach materials?

We have posters, stickers, and pledge cards that your League can use at a petition gathering event. The pledge cards come English, Spanish, Korean, Vietnamese, Tagalog, and Chinese. Please let amusefisher [at] lwvc.org (subject: SCF%20material%20request) (Andrew Muse-Fisher) know if you would like some of these materials sent to you.

Schools & Communities First outreach materials

Do you have pictures of signature gathering at an event? Send them to photos [at] lwvc.org so we can celebrate your success on social media!

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Voter Service

To stay abreast of what Leagues are doing in voter service, to pose questions, share experiences and gain knowledge please join the Voter Service Google Group.  This is a private group by invitation only so please email cmoongoldberg [at] lwvc.org () to be added. We are stronger together!

Time to think about writing Pros & Cons of the November Ballot Propositions.  If you like writing, editing, and digging deep into interesting topics, please contact cmoongoldberg [at] lwvc.org ().  Work can begin as early as May 2020 when the preliminary Legislative Analysts reports can be found and legislative hearings begin.  The bulk of the work is in late June and all of July. 

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January 2020 Post Board Summary

LWVC/LWVCEF Boards of Directors Meetings
January 26, 2020 – San Diego, California


  • March 1, 2020 – LWVUS Program Planning – Forms are due
  • March 3, 2020 – Presidential Primary Election
  • April 1, 2020 – US Census Day
  • April 15, 2020 – LWVC Legislative Interview Reports – Forms are due
  • June 25 – 28, 2020 – LWVUS Convention in Washington, DC


The LWVC Board of Directors acted as follows:


The Board welcomed newly hired Executive Director Stephanie Doute to her first Board Meeting.  She joined the League staff in mid-November 2019.

Ratification of Special Meeting Actions

  • October 24, 2019 Executive Committee –Executive Director Recruitment
  • October 30, 2019 – Approved Hiring of Executive Director Stephanie Doute
  • November 1, 2019 – Fundraising Discussion
  • November 25, 2019 – Executive Committee - Changed the Signatories on Financial Accounts.


  • Reinstated Helen Hutchison (LWV Oakland) to the LWVC Board of Directors.


  • Martha Cox (LWV San Diego) as Local League Coach for the Leagues of Central Orange County Area, North Orange County, and Orange Coast
  • Kathy Souza (LWV Placer County) as Local League Coach for the Leagues of El Dorado County, Woodland, and Plumas County MAS Unit.


  • The November 2019 LWVC Financial Report was received and filed.


  • The Board authorized presentation of a Proposal to LWVUS to include Climate Emergency in its Making Democracy Work program.


The LWVCEF Board of Directors acted as follows:


Ratification of Special Meeting Actions

  • October 24, 2019 Executive Committee –Executive Director Recruitment
  • October 30, 2019 – Approved Hiring of Executive Director Stephanie Doute
  • November 1, 2019 – Fundraising Discussion
  • November 25, 2019 Executive Committee – Changed the Signatories on Financial Accounts.


  • Reinstated Helen Hutchison (LWV Oakland) to the LWVCEF Board of Directors.


  • The November 2019 LWVCEF Financial Report was received and filed.


  • The Easy Voter Guide for the March 3, 2020 Presidential Primary Election is online and available for downloading in five languages.

Caroline de Llamas
LWVC/EF Secretary
cdellamas [at] lwvc.org

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