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Approaching its 100th anniversary, the Minnesota League of Women Voters is challenged by limited resources, difficulty in attracting younger members and those from more diverse backgrounds, and candidates unwilling to share positions on issues, according to Susan Sheridan Tucker, executive director. But the non-partisan organization--with some 1,600 members in 33 units statewide--is continuing its central work on voter-related concerns. Through "Your Voice Your Vote", the LWV is helping high school students learn about the importance of voting and being active in the future of democracy. Local units, such as the Roseville Area LWV report on police service and training, remain active on current issues.
Unfortunately, she said, many people today seem preoccupied with national issues and candidates, which can make it difficult to create interest at the state and local level.
Sheridan Tucker reports that the LWV is increasingly involved in coalitions of organizations to implement its recommendations. A new voters guide sponsored by a broad group of organizations is contemplated.
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Might involving high school and college students be helpful? They need that experience and it fattens their resumes for both college and work.
I feel badly about their shrinking membership, low fund raising support, and challenge of attracting younger diverse membership. On the positive side, their local Facebook page (LWV ABC MN) is well done and a good marketing effort on their part. They have great members and have been very active in our area of the state.
I also applaud their work with high school
students, voter registration, and racial justice issues. I wonder
if collaborating with school districts makes some sense in attracting
younger membership. Rotarians (also struggling with membership and
attracting diversity) do what with Rotaract (youth run Rotary Clubs) and
local Chambers of Commerce do that by sometimes going into classrooms
and talking about careers and job opportunities in the area.
I certainly agree with her belief that social
media has contributed to individuals becoming more silo-ed in their
thinking. I appreciate their effort at trying to collaborate with
others on creating a voters guide. Particularly today where it
took a fair amount of research and phone calling (to trusted local
office holders) to navigate this primary election.
Teaming up with the Civic Caucus from time to time makes sense to me - both groups doing great work in the public-policy process and public engagement arena. I know these kinds of organizations are really struggling to survive and be relevant within today's society but I shudder to imagine life without them. More silos and less public engagement at a time when our next President might be Donald Trump is troubling to say the least. However, you could support them in your combined efforts is greatly appreciated.
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The Civic Caucus is a non-partisan,
tax-exempt educational organization. The Interview Group
includes persons of varying political persuasions,
S. Adams, David Broden, Audrey Clay, Janis Clay, Pat Davies, Bill
Frenzel, Paul Gilje (Executive Director), Randy Johnson, Sallie Kemper, Ted
© The Civic Caucus, 01-01-2008
2104 Girard Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55405. firstname.lastname@example.org
Dan Loritz, chair, 612-791-1919 ~  Paul A. Gilje, coordinator, 952-890-5220.