January 26, 2012


LWVNJ eVoter:
Marriage Equality,
Human Trafficking,
Call for Leaders
LWVNJ Supports Marriage Equality
Earlier this week the League of Women Voters of New Jersey submitted testimony proudly supporting the "Marriage Equality and Religious Exemption Act".

In June 2010 League members from around the country voted at the LWVUS Convention to include marriage equality for same gender couples in our " Equality of Opportunity" position. This position works to end discrimination and offer equal opportunities for all.

The bill has been released from the Senate Judiciary Committee but still faces an uphill battle to passage. The League of Women Voters of New Jersey will be calling on our members to take action throughout this process as we work towards ending discrimination in our state.
Have You Seen Human Trafficking
In Your Town?

The following is written by Elizabeth Santeramo, League of Women Voters of New Jersey board member and chair of the League's Women and Family Issues Committee. It has appeared in "The Alternative Press" and other papers around the state.   


January has been declared "Human Trafficking Awareness and Prevention Month" by President Obama. As a member of the League of Women Voters of New Jersey, I have had the privilege to attend a United Nations briefing on Human Trafficking where a former sex slave bravely shared her story. The devastating crime of human trafficking occurs in New Jersey's urban areas and in the quaint small towns that pepper the state. The League of Women Voters supports human rights, and condemns all forms of slavery and the violence associated with it. We believe that the basic inalienable rights granted at birth must be protected and upheld.


Many of the massage parlors that line our Main Streets are storefronts for sex shops-harbingers of terror and abuse where trafficked women and girls are forced to perform sexual acts on patrons. Often, the victims live where they work, in dark and filthy conditions. They are not allowed to leave, take breaks, or do the routine things you and I do, like shop, visit a friend, or take a walk in the park. They are truly sex slaves.


It is odd to use the term "slave" in 2012. Yet, these victims are transported to our local towns from Newark, where they are trafficked from Brazil and parts of Asia. This is modern day slavery...continue reading


Call for Committee Members
The League of Women Voters of New Jersey is reinstating our statewide "Government Committee" and we are looking for members who would like to step up and lead this effort. Government committee members will be influential in spearheading some of our most important work including:
  • Campaign finance reform,  
  • Advocating for transparent government through strengthening of Open Public Records and Open Public Meetings legislation, and 
  • Protecting and fighting for voting rights

Members of our statewide committees are League leaders and play a very important role. Among other things these committees study issues, suggest action to the LWVNJ state board, educate the public, and help put together our fall and spring forums.  


If you are interested in finding out more or getting involved please email LWVNJ Executive Director Kerry Butch at kmbutch@lwvnj.org.  


In This Issue
Marriage Equality
Human Trafficking
Call for Leaders
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