May 2020

Join us virtually for Council 2020!

Saturday, May 9, 2020
9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
All members are invited!

Council will be held virtually via Zoom! All registered participants will receive a Zoom link via email.

Find everything you need on the Council 2020 page of our website.

We Need You! 

  • Would you be interested in co-chairing a proposed study/update on our state Criminal Justice policy position, or serving on that committee this coming year? Read the proposed update here. If you’re interested, please contact Marlene Merrill before Sat, May 9 Council meeting.
  • We need better representation of local Leagues on the LWVK Nominating Committee, and we need a Nominating Chair to organize the committee process which will not be in-person. Having an early functioning nominating process is a top priority in our new Strategic Plan. We need input from local Leagues as Nominating committee members this year! Please contact Teresa Briggs before Sat, May 9 Council meeting. 
  • Would you be interested in serving as state chair for Fundraising and Development? Please contact Teresa Briggs. Being on the LWVK board is now easier than ever as we have gone to once a month Zoom meetings. Or you could serve as an Off-Board Chair, and attend board meetings as you are able. Also, the recently completed LWVK Strategic Plan gives much responsibility to the board in this area. 

10th Circuit Court of Appeals upholds Fish v. Kobach decision that DPOC is unconstitutional – LWVK is proud of our part in this victory as plaintiffs.

Read the ACLU Press Release.
Read the LWV Press Release.
Read the LWVK Letter to the Editor.

Voter Service –
by Janice Walker, LWVK Voter Service Chair

Even though we all have been honoring the “stay at home” order from Governor Laura Kelly, some Leagues have found creative ways to get the word out regarding voter registration. Read the highlights from Salina, Manhattan, and Wichita here.

Also, there are links in Janice’s report to two PowerPoint presentations on voter registration you can use or adapt for your League’s use.

In other Voter Service news, we have revised the Voter Service Quarterly Reporting Form from four pages to one page! Take a look: Voter Service Quarterly Reporting Form

Advocating for Mail-In Ballots

Election officers in several Kansas counties are sending applications for mail-in ballots to all registered voters. Wichita’s Election Commissioner sent the Wichita-Metro LWV an extensive written contingency plan. Co-President Cille King reported to the LWVK board that the Kansas Secretary of State has statutory authority (Kansas Statute 25-622) to declare an emergency due of COVID-19 and require that all county election offices send all registered Kansans a mail-in ballot. More to come on what actions we might take to advocate for mail-in ballots. Here’s a link to an NPR article about the need for states to order now an increased number of mail-in ballots.

Advocacy Report
by Carrie Lancaster, LWVK Advocacy Chair

With the legislature out of session, Advocacy work is taking a different shape.  Read Carrie’s full report here.

Centennial Committee
by Martha Pint & Jacqueline Lightcap, Co-Chairs

After taking a break due to COVID-19-related closures, we are hoping to get back on schedule with the Traveling Exhibit. Kim Montoya, our program coordinator for the exhibit and March to the Polls, is contacting hosts now. We will be exhibiting through November and December, and possibly into 2021 to make sure it meets grant requirements.

Plans for March to the Polls are also being adapted to our current reality, so stay tuned!

Did you know that LWVK has an endowment fund?

We do and it was begun in 1991 for the purpose of receiving contributions from individuals and corporations who wish to have their contributions provide continuous benefits to the Kansas League. Read more here.

Board Briefs

  • The LWVK Board had a full virtual meeting on May 2.
  • Prepared for the upcoming Council meeting,
  • Reviewed educational Power Point presentations about voting that can be used in virtual classrooms.
  • Discussed the recent Appeals Court decision on Fish v. Kobach (now Fish v. Schwab).
  • Strategized ways to ensure voting in the 2020 Primary and General elections that will not only protect election participants’ health, but also facilitate high turnout.
  • Reports about People-Powered Fair Maps campaign and from various committees showed that our membership has been busy despite the pandemic.
  • A Zoom meeting for local League Study Chairs on how to conduct a study/update this year was proposed. Would like to know what local Leagues think about this idea.
  • Statewide, membership continues to grow, with a total of 1,200 active members as of the end of April.
  • Approved pursuit of a LWVUS grant for training and executing DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) initiatives. We brainstormed ways to use this DEI grant to provide opportunities to local Leagues.
  • Approved a contract for a State Fair booth. The cost is covered by a Centennial Celebration grant and can be applied to next year’s fair if this year’s State Fair is cancelled.
  • National Convention is now going to be held virtually on June 25-27, 2020. More details to come on the LWV website.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

LWVUS offers free monthly webinars on DEI topics to help local League members  learn and grow in this arena. The April 16 topic  was “Gender Identity.”  You can find a link to this recording, and all of the DEI webinars, here. 

The 2020 Webinar schedule is listed here. May 21 is the next webinar and will look at community partnership and activist from a DEI lens. Click on any of the links in this article to register.

(VOTER Notes highlights DEI information here each month as a way to provide resources to help your local League begin to focus on these important issues.)

The League of Women Voters of Kansas is a grassroots, volunteer, political organization with members at large and nine local Leagues across the state. For nearly 100 years, LWVK has encouraged the informed and active participation of citizens in government and influenced public policy through education and advocacy. The League does not endorse candidates or political parties.

Support our ongoing work. Donate to LWVK today.

 LWVK information is available on our website. For the latest news, follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

Making Democracy Work®
League of Women Voters of Kansas 2019-2021 Co-Presidents
Cille King & Teresa Briggs
copresidents@lwvk.org

“VOTER Notes” Editors
Office Administrator: Jacqueline Lightcap

2nd VP for Communications: Grace Wilson

About the Newsletter
Does your League have a success story, innovative program, or commendable action you want to share with your sister Leagues across the state? Send it to the VOTER Notes so we can feature a League each month!  Share your stories; they encourage other Leagues and help everyone know that we are all in this work together.

  • LWVK sends the VOTER Notes monthly newsletter to local board presidents and communications teams to distribute to their local League members, generally the first week of every month. If you are finding it online and not in your inbox, please tell us. Members-at-Large receive the newsletter directly via email. Newsletters are also posted for public viewing on lwvk.org.
  • During the legislative session, LWVK sends a weekly email containing Paul Johnson’s “Policy Watch.”
  • Submit photos or stories of your League activities. Deadline for the June VOTER Notes is Tuesday, May 26.
  • Share this newsletter with your contacts and on social media.