Advocacy

The League of Women Voters of Roseville Area that includes Roseville, Lauderdale, Little Canada, Maplewood, and Falcon Heights, has adopted positions regarding several issues of local importance. By clicking on the link below, you will be directed to a downloadable copy of those position statements.  Click here for link.

ADA Compliance Study Report and Consensus - February 15, 2022

The ADA Compliance Study Committee will share its findings with members and ask members consensus questions. Members are strongly encouraged to attend this meeting.

LWV-RA conducted a study of our five cities. The purpose of this study is to assess the compliance level of the section of the ADA that guarantees access to public buildings and sites in the five cities included in the League of Women Voters of Roseville Area (Falcon Heights, Lauderdale, Little Canada, Maplewood, and Roseville) with the ADA.  The study examines compliance policy, administration, and accessibility by residents who are mobility challenged to government buildings, polling locations, and city recreational venues such as parks and playgrounds. Focus is on the significant areas of compliance, identification of instances of non-compliance, and considerations for the cities to bring ADA deficiencies into compliance as soon as reasonably practicable.

You can read the full study, including consensus questions, here.  The appendices can be read here.

Growing Diversity in Local Leadership - November 16, 2021

If you missed this program or would like to watch it again, the Ramsey County Library has provided a link to the recording: https://my.nicheacademy.com/rcladult/course/39901

The League of Women Voters Roseville Area recently looked into who is participating in local governance Boards, exploring how well these groups reflect the makeup of our communities. As a follow-up to a study, Holli Arp, Leadership and Civic Engagement Program Leader with the U of M Extension Services will lead a panel discussion with two colleagues and Extension Educators Jocelyn Hernandez Swanson and Lisa Hinz asking “How do we encourage and support more diverse and inclusive leadership in our local governments?” This Leadership and Civic Engagement team has been working with communities across Minnesota as they grapple with inclusiveness, cultural competence and exploring new pathways to diversify leadership. Join the conversation! 

Windows and Mirrors - Two Should Be Greater Than One - Florence Sprague - November/December 2021

English, English, English. It is the language of common parlance in the United States and is traditionally considered beneficial for economic success worldwide. But there is another aspect for immigrant families. When learning English comes at the cost of not learning the language of your parents and grandparents, there is profound loss. Loss of connection to elders, culture, identity, history, community…

In Europe it is not uncommon for people to be bilingual, or multi-lingual. English is often the second or third language. It does not erase the other languages, nor does speaking German, French, or Czech as a first language prevent the learning of English. In Africa many people speak multiple languages, a mix of local and colonial. It is not an inherent limitation of the human brain to speak or understand only one form of communication. What is it about the United States that makes bilingualism so difficult to sustain?

Windows and Mirrors - Willkommen, Bienvenue, Salam - Florence Sprague - October 2021

One of my sisters taught German at a private school for decades. She is a fluent speaker of German and knowledgeable about the minutiae of German grammar. In retirement, and particularly during the COVID-19 lockdown, she has been trading German lessons for Spanish lessons with another retired colleague who taught Spanish. They meet on Zoom to speak, and give one another practice exercises and options for exploration on DuoLingo. I admire her for even taking on this enterprise.

What is interesting is that despite being an expert at one foreign language, and despite having had some Spanish in high school, she often complains that she just can’t seem to remember all of the new vocabulary she is supposed to be learning. Not long ago she remarked that she has a new sympathy with older immigrants trying to learn English and struggling. Ahhh.

Environmental Subcommittee Member Donna Peterson

LWVRA Environmental Subcommittee and Resilient Roseville are responsible for the city of Roseville enrolling in Excel’s Partners In Energy program. One of the results is the development of the Energy Action Team within Partners In Energy that made significant recommendations to the City of Roseville. The chair of the LWVRA Environmental Subcommittee is Donna Peterson who was selected to be a member of that team. You can learn more about this at CityOfRoseville.com/Partners-in-Energy.

Windows and Mirrors - A Place to Call Home - Florence Sprague - July-August 2021

“Fear is the cheapest room in the house. I would like to see you living in better conditions.” Hafiz, Persian poet, 1315-1390

It’s a long time since I have been a renter. There are plusses and minuses to renting versus owning, both in terms of finances and responsibilities. But those questions and choices are irrelevant to many low-income renters in America.

In 2017, sociologist Matthew Desmond won a Pulitzer Prize, and other recognitions, for his searing study, Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City. Though it was highly acclaimed, it did not make it to the top of my reading pile at the time. This year with pandemic related moratoria on evictions, news of gaps in those leading to loss of housing, the visible challenges of balancing the interests of landlords and low-income renters who may be essential workers, and more, it came to mind again.

Equitable Representation Consensus Meeting - May 24, 2021

The study team for “Equitable Representation in City Commissions and Boards” invites all League members to provide feedback to arrive at consensus as the next step in the study process. This year-long study includes research on the composition, recruitment, orientation, and role of City Council-appointed commissioners and a report. The goal of this study was to identify current practices and suggestions/best practices in equitable representation for Boards and Commissions appointed by the City Councils of Falcon Heights, Lauderdale, Little Canada, Maplewood, and Roseville. Here is the attached letter and report. (A print copy has been sent to members who traditionally receive print materials.) After hearing a summary presentation and participating in discussion, members will have the opportunity to vote on the following question: "Should LWVRA recommend that our cities’ boards and commissions broadly reflect the diversity of their population, including race, ethnicity, gender, income, age, and other aspects of diversity?"

Please participate via Zoom on Monday, May 24, 7:00 p.m. at this link: https://lwvmn-org.zoom.us/j/93171333608?pwd=Yi9mSHRCSGtlbEdXQU5qNzkrRm1hZz09.

LWV Minnesota Firearms Committee - Domestic Terrorism/Firearms Issues

LWVMN Firearms Update Study Committee presents speaker Joshua Horwitz, J.D., Executive Director of The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence in Washington D.C and co-author of Guns, Democracy and the Insurrectionist Idea. Horwitz speaks, via Zoom, on the topic: Domestic Terrorism in the U.S. and Minnesota. Also speaking is John Choi, Ramsey County Attorney who provides local perspective on firearm issues and how they’re dealt with. Presented April 27, 2021.  View on our YouTube channel.

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A Statement from the League of Women Voters of Minnesota

LWVMN Statement in Defense of Democracy

On January 14, LWV Minnesota sent a letter to our MN Legislative leaders, seeking truth related to our 2020 elections and consequences for the baseless claims of voter fraud continuing to be reiterated by various people within our legislature. We were especially concerned about the growing evidence of possible violence being directed at elected and government officials prior to inauguration, and about the ongoing use of the baseless claims of voter fraud as a reason for this insurrection behavior.

Was this a partisan act? Being nonpartisan means we don't support any specific party or candidate. Equally, it means that we don't abandon our well-studied positions based on a legislator's party. We will continue to work with all legislators, regardless of party, to advance free and fair elections. And we will continue to hold accountable all legislators, regardless of party, who undermine democracy.

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