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Ohio Public Policy E-Newsletter-March 2010

Ohio Public Policy E-Newsletter - March 24, 2010
From Jackie Evangelista, jevangelista@roadrunner.com
Ohio Public Policy Chair

Dear Branch Public Policy Chairs, their Stand-Ins and Newsletter Editors: As we near the end of another program year, it’s a good time for you to ask what you as public policy chair have done TO ADVANCE EQUITY FOR WOMEN AND GIRLS THROUGH ADVOCACY, EDUCATION AND RESEARCH over the past year. Were you able to schedule at least one program on an AAUW public policy priority issue? Did you give a short public policy report at meetings? Did you interest any members in signing up for the AAUW Action Network? Did you or any members contact any of your national or state legislators about an AAUW action priority? Did you collaborate with a like-minded group to advance an AAUW issue? Now is a good time to begin setting goals for your upcoming program planning cycle. Editors are invited to use information from this newsletter in branch publications. Jackie

RECHARGE AT CONVENTION

Carolyn H. Garfein

Everyone I’ve ever spoken with has been glad they made the effort to attend an AAUW Ohio Convention —sometimes because they learned something that they thought would help their branch, sometimes just because it is exhilarating to be in the presence of so many women who feel and believe the same way they do about so many issues, and sometimes because of an outstanding speaker. Many told me after hearing Lisa Maatz, our AAUW Public Policy and Government Relations director, at a past convention that she alone was worth the price of admission.

But in our busy world, it can be easy to procrastinate about making the decision to go. So I’m encouraging you now to set aside Saturday and Sunday, April 17-18, for AAUW. If you want to spend the night, call right away to get your hotel reservation because the deadline is Sunday, April 4 (Easter!), if you want to get the guaranteed rate of $89 a night. Call the Worthington Holiday Inn at 1-888-465 4329 and mention AAUW. Ask a branch member to attend with you to share the cost. Then fill out and return the registration form for AAUW members who belong to an AAUW branch.

If you want to hear AAUW President Carolyn Garfein, be sure to sign up for the optional Saturday Awards Banquet. The rest of the program is exceptional. In addition to Garfein, Saturday features two outstanding speakers:

  • Andrea Cambern, investigative reporter and news anchor at the CBS affiliate in Columbus, on “Women and the Media” in the morning.

    Andrea Cambern

  • Ohio Senator Theresa Fedor on “Women in Elected Office” at lunch.
  • Saturday also features a wealth of breakouts. For details, please visit the AAUW Ohio Convention page and decide which are most appealing or useful for you.

I will be on the program both days. On Saturday at 2:45 p.m., I will be part of a panel that will report on what happened at the Momentum 2010 Women’s Summit sponsored by the Governor’s office in Columbus March 8 (International Women’s Day). It turned out to be quite a day for women in Ohio.

On Sunday at 9:15 a.m. I will moderate a counterpart session with branch public policy chairs. But, if you plan to attend this session, please let me know via e-mail. If we don’t get enough response, we won’t have the session. On Sunday at 3 p.m. I will participate in another panel put together to present AAUW’s Program in a Box concept of mission-based programming. I really hope you will take a weekend off and join us in Worthington for what is sure to be a stimulating convention.

THIS I BELIEVE

A unique aspect of this year’s AAUW Ohio Convention is the opportunity to enter an essay contest patterned on the “This I Believe” NPR concept and win $25 dollars towards your branch’s EF or LAF contribution. You are asked to write a 300-500 word essay about what AAUW means to you personally and what you think its value is. If yours is one of the four winners, you will be asked to read your essay at the convention. So get your pens out or fire up your computers because the deadline is April 2. Submissions should be e-mailed to dregan@bgsu.edu OR sent by regular mail to Diane Regan, President, AAUW Ohio, 873 Country Club Dr., Bowling Green, OH 43402. To read more about the contest, visit the Essay Contest page on our Web site.

AAUW ACTION PRIORITIES

AAUW now has a separate Web site for its action work. As a result of the re-organization that occurred at the convention last summer, which made AAUW a 501©3 organization, the policy portion was cleaved off into a separate offshoot, the AAUW Action Fund, which is a 501©4. Please check it out and bookmark it.

The 111th Congressional Voting Record is available online. One of the advantages of belonging to an organization like AAUW is that it has a lobbying presence in Washington DC which tracks how our legislators vote on bills we deem important to women. In this edition, AAUW began tracking whether legislators were willing to co-sponsor bills as well. The bills that were tracked as well as how our Senators voted are listed on the attachment; to see how your representatives voted, go to the aauwaction.org website.

Equal Pay Day will be held this year on Tuesday, April 20. Since women earn 77 percent on the dollar compared with a comparable man, this is the day by which a woman’s paycheck catches up with a man’s. AAUW offers a “Program in a Box,” which includes ideas for how to observe this day. Please observe the day in some way, even if only via a letter to the editor. Get AAUW’s Pay Equity Ideas for Action.

We need to pass the Paycheck Fairness Act. While the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act put us back to where we were, an update of the 46-year-old Equal Pay Act in the form of the Paycheck Fairness Act is much needed.

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