Friday, April 29
Deadline to order a Mother's Day Card
Saturday, April 30
LWVMA Council, Clark University, Worcester, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Saturday, April 30
Boston Globe GRANT deadline to vote
Tuesday, May 10

Winners of the "YOUth Should Vote" Student video contest announced
A Word From Our President
Now more than ever, America needs the League. Now more than ever, the League needs you.
Getting out the vote - voting rights - education. Those are three key issues facing us right now. The League is in the forefront in addressing them.
Come to Council on April 30 at Clark University in Worcester and learn what your State League is doing, learn what local Leagues are doing, and learn how you can make a difference.
  • Meet with old friends
  • Make new ones
  • Learn what the Charter School study team is up to
  • Learn how to move from climate talk to climate change
  • Learn who is not participating in elections
  • Join the Move 2016 kickoff campaign
  • Hear and be heard
  • Educate yourself
  • And, most importantly, have fun!
Council is not just for League leaders, but for all League members.
Jean Cherdack, LWVMA President
Join us at Council
Come to LWVMA Council 2016 at Clark University in Worcester Saturday, April 30, and learn first-hand how your League can make a difference as part of the state League's 2016 voter engagement campaign - MOVE 2016. We hope to see at least one or two members from every local League; there's no limit on how many people a League can send.

Hear experts share research and hands-on experience identifying and mobilizing underrepresented voters in Massachusetts in our keynote panel: "The Massachusetts Electorate: Who's Not Participating and What Will It Take to Reach Them?" Participants will be Kei Kawashima-Ginsberg, Director, CIRCLE (The Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement), Tufts University, a research center that focuses on young people; Eva Millona, Executive Director, Massachusetts Immigration and Refugee Advocacy Coalition (MIRA); and Nathaniel Stinnett, Founder and CEO, Environmental Voter Project, working to identify and mobilize non-voting environmentalists.

That's not all! Two workshops are planned: An update on our Charter Schools in Massachusetts Study and From Climate Talk to Climate Action.

Enjoy a light breakfast and lunch, and a chance to connect with other Leaguers for a stimulating day. Registration fee is $45 (financial assistance available). To register and for more information, please click here.
Check Out the LWVMA Annual Report
The League of Women Voters of Massachusetts 2014-15 Annual Report is now up on our website, featuring the good work the League is doing at both the state and local levels.  You can view it as either a pdf or a "digital magazine."  Please check it out and feel free to share the link.
Salute a Mother, Help the League!
For a $25 donation, LWVMA will send a card to a special woman in your life, wishing her a Happy Mother's Day and letting her know that you have made a donation to the League in her name. 

This is a great opportunity to recognize a mother, grandmother, sister, daughter, aunt, niece, cousin, friend...or anyone else!  You can also let your own family know this is a gift you would like for Mother's Day!

Donations will go to our Citizen Education Fund to support our voter service and education programs and are tax-deductible.   

To order by check or credit card, please 
click here. Orders must be received by April 29 to ensure delivery by Mother's Day, May 8.

Help LWVMA Win Boston Globe GRANT
If you are a Boston Globe or
Boston Globe Grant
subscriber, you can help support our citizen education programs through the GRANT program, which awards free advertising space to non-profit organizations. Please help us win space for a Get Out the Vote ad this fall.

Globesubscribers may have already received notification by mail or by email. If you didn't receive a mailed voucher, you can vote online here.  Either way, please "vote" for the League of Women Voters Lotte E. Scharfman Memorial Fund! 

The deadline is Saturday, April 30. Visit Boston Globe if you have questions or call LWVMA at 617-523-2999.
MOVE 2016 Moves into High Gear
Our 2016 Massachusetts Voter Engagement campaign-MOVE 2016-is off to a great start and moving forward on a number of fronts:

A dozen local Leagues have used VOTE411 for their local elections this spring, and we also prepared an online Voter's Guide for the local elections in Framingham on allows voters to review information about candidates and access voting tools by entering their address.

We are looking for volunteers to begin work in the next month to develop a Voter's Guide for the state primary on Sept. 8, and then for the general election next November. We'll be preparing questions for all Congressional races throughout the state, as well as State Senator and State Representative races. Where these legislative districts include a local League presence, we'll encourage local Leagues to work together to develop questions. All will be compiled into a Voter's Guide accessible to voters throughout the state. If you'd like to help with this effort, please e-mail Mary Ann Ashton or Meryl Kessler.

We distributed over 5,000 online voter registration informational postcards to 32 local Leagues to share with the public at League events. We will be preparing postcards with information about pre-registration for 16- and 17-year-olds when that becomes effective in late summer! We're planning to distribute these cards to communities without a local League by working with our community partners.

Our annual Student Video Contest asked high school students to submit 30-second public service announcements encouraging young people to register and to vote. Winners will be announced in May.

And, to help engage young people, don't forget to check out our League Choice Books here.
Winchester LWV Uses Online Voter Registration
By Vicky Coccoluto and Susan Woodward
LWV of Winchester
The Winchester League has taken a new twist on high school voter registration, using computers for online registration. The League also expanded its efforts to a fourth high school, in Medford.

Winchester's online registration effort began last fall when Chris Kuang, president of the Student Council at Winchester High School, reached out to LWV Winchester. He knew the League had done voter registration in the past, and felt this year, with the presidential election, it was especially important to register students. We followed up with a meeting with the principal, our town clerk, Chris, and two League members.

Preparing for the voter registration on January 14, we coordinated with the principal and the student council. We set up four tables and ten chairs in the school cafeteria. The librarian loaned us nine Chrome laptops. Read more....
New League Positions on Campaign Finance, Constitutional Amendment
Over the past year, Leagues across the country participated in two national studies: the Constitutional Amendment Study and the Money in Politics study. The two studies have led to new national positions based on the input of local and state Leagues.

The Constitutional Amendment study led to two positions, on considerations for evaluating Constitutional amendment proposals, which you can read
here, and on safeguards to govern the Constitutional convention process, here.

The Money in Politics study led to a position calling for specific actions and setting long-term goals to get big money out of the political process. You can read that position

In Massachusetts, a steering committee for the studies gave Leagues support and encouraged multi-League events. We thank that committee for its efforts and all of the local Leagues which submitted consensus reports.
Read more....
Action Alerts Are Important
You will likely notice an increase in the number of Action Alert requests to contact legislators from now until the legislature's session ends July 31. These last months of the two-year session are when most of the bills we have been following actually come to the floor for a vote. So this is the time when we most need LWV members to contact Senators and Representatives.

Please respond when an Action Alert lands in your inbox. You do not have to argue the fine points of legislation. An email or a phone call to your Senator or Representative to let them know they have constituents with opinions on a given bill makes an enormous difference. You can find the contact information for your legislators
Interested in Transportation Issues?
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation is holding 15 public hearings around the state from April 25 to May 12, seeking input on MassDOT's capital investment plan for the next five years, including highways, municipal projects, airports, and rail and transit projects. A list of dates and locations is available
here. If you are unable to attend a meeting, a copy of the presentation is available here. LWVMA has not taken positions on specific proposals, but we urge interested members to make their views known as individuals.
Congratulations to the Scharfman Grant Winners
Congratulations to the nine Leagues awarded Daniel Scharfman Citizen Education Grants in January. This grant program helps local Leagues carry out events and projects in citizen education and voter service. Generous contributions to the Lotte E. Scharfman Education Fund have made this program possible. A big thank you to those of you who have donated.

For information on the grant program and details on the January winning projects, click here.

The winners were: Arlington, candidates' night; Cape Cod Area, public forum on medical marijuana; Concord-Carlisle, public forum on selecting a new school superintendent; Hamilton-Wenham, voter registration and education banner; Harvard, housing forums; Greater Haverhill, naturalization and voter registration materials; Marblehead, town meeting signs; Shrewsbury, "Vote Tuesday" signs; Westford, "Election Day is Tuesday" banner.
LWWVUS Convention June 16-19 in Washington
We hope to have an impressive Massachusetts presence at the LWVUS Convention in Washington, D.C. June 16-19. You can find information about Convention and
register here. It's a great opportunity to understand the "bigger picture" of the League.
Honoring the Founding Mothers
Fredie Kay, a member of the Needham League and the Massachusetts Women's Suffrage Celebration Coalition, which includes LWVMA, received a White House invitation and represented the WSCC earlier this month when President Obama dedicated a monument to the suffrage movement.

The President designated the
Sewall-Belmont House and Museum as a national monument for women's equality. The house will be known as the Belmont-Paul Women's Equality National Monument, to recognize two pioneers of the women's rights struggle: Alva Belmont, a wealthy socialite who used money from her divorce to finance the National Women's Party as it pressed for and won voting rights for women in 1920, and Alice Paul, who founded the party and led that effort.

The Mass. League Voter is distributed to all LWVMA members. Anyone can request the Voter by clicking here. Please review this Update for articles of interest to your League and include them in your local Bulletin.

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