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Local League News

The LWV of Broome and Tioga Counties had Suffragist Elizabeth Cady Stanton talk about her life and times at the Phelps Mansion in Binghamton. Stanton, portrayed by Dr. Melinda Grube of Cayuga Community College, discussed her struggles with the suffrage movement and answered questions. See the media coverage from the event at: http://www.wicz.com/story/38065883/elizabeth-cady-stanton-visits-phelps-mansion

This is a picture of Flora Schwartz(a member of the Southwest Nassau League) pointing to the place on the voting machine that indicated the lever to pull to vote for women’s suffrage in NYS. The machine used to be in the front office of the Nassau County BOE.

The League of Women Voters in Saratoga County wasted no time supporting the planned actions of student walk-out leaders in response to a recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida. That’s because since 1990, the LWVUS has supported strong federal measures to limit the accessibility and regulate ownership of handguns and semi-automatic assault weapons. The League recently invited three student walkout leaders to speak at our forum on the First Amendment. Click here to read what they said (page 3). Matthew Taylor, of Saratoga Springs High School, stated, “Every progressive accomplishment in human history is due to people standing up, fighting back, and demanding what is right. As James Baldwin once said, “Not everything faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.” So, do not back down. Lift one another up; we must change hearts and laws. The more we protest, the more we march, the more we sit in, and the more we walk out, the more vibrant our democracy will be.”

In Buffalo/Niagara LWV, League volunteers have been very busy recently at naturalization ceremonies. Joyce Bol and Kate Wagner welcomed 108 new citizens from 37 countries at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery on March 22. On March 29, Lynne Vallone and Janet Goodsell represented the League at West Seneca West High School’s ceremony for 54 new citizens from 25 countries. (Lynne reported that this was her first visit to her alma mater since graduation!) At the U.S. Courthouse on April 5, Barbara Brooks was present when 52 applicants from 27 countries became citizens, and Janet Goodsell and Judy Weidemann welcomed 53 applicants from 25 countries there on April 17. League volunteers have been successful in registering our newest citizens to vote with assistance from representatives of the Board of Elections.

Dr. Virginia “Ginny” Horvath, the 13th President of the State University of New York at Fredonia, will be the speaker at the annual meeting of the LWV of Chautauqua County. She will speak about, “A Nation at Risk: Public Higher Education in America.”

LWV of Albany County held a meeting for their over 50 new or returning members (since 2016) to showcase the many activities, tasks and events of the League. The new and returning members were encouraged to get active in an activity of their interest.

The LWVs of New Rochelle, Larchmont/Mamaroneck and Rye, Rye Brook and Port Chester hosted the new County Executive, George Latimar, to discuss his First 100 Days at their annual luncheon.

On Saturday March 24th, the Syracuse Metro LWV was represented at the “March For Our Lives”event in Syracuse. Heather Allison Waters and Roberta and Dan Millert staffed the booth offering voter egistration services to the attendees. The organizing students eloquently shared their views on school safety and desired gun control legislation. They also encouraged everyone to VOTE. Over 1,000 individuals participated in the event.

March and April have proven to be successful months for the LWV of New Rochelle’s registration volunteers despite the crazy weather! Our campaign to register as many students as possible before their finals begin is well in hand: 70 students from Ursuline registered to vote for the first time, and another 70 from Iona College, Monroe College, and CNR combined also registered to vote. We dropped off 75 registration forms to the NRHS Alternative school. During the rest of April and May, we will focus on Iona Prep, NRHS and the 3 colleges.

In the Hamptons, the League enlisted four speakers to share their perspectives on immigration within a framework that acknowledges that we are a nation of immigrants and that immigrants have been, and are, a significant labor source for the regional economy. The speakers will be: Martha Potter, League Board member and historian, will address the history of immigration legislation and how it has impacted Long Island; Michael Nenner, General Manager of Gurneys Montauk, will discuss immigrant issues raised in the hospitality industry; Rob Carpenter, Administrative Director of the Long Island Farm Bureau based in Riverhead, will speak about the impact of immigration on East End agriculture; and Larry Cantwell, former East Hampton Town Supervisor, will outline some ways that immigrants impact government services.

The LWV of Tompkins County will host a viewing of the film, Making a Killing – Guns, Greed and the NRA. The Robert Greenwald film features personal stories from people who have been affected by gun violence including unintentional shootings, domestic violence, suicides, mass shootings and gun trafficking. It exposes the profit of gun companies and the role of the National Rifle Association. It explores ways that we can reduce gun violence in our communities. Following the film there will be a brief presentation of New York’s current gun laws by Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton’s aide, Septh Murtagh.

The Opioid Epidemic in Schenectady: How Does this Affect Me? Can I Prevent this Addiction Epidemic From Affecting My Loved Ones? is the topic of of a meeting organized by the LWV of Schenectady County. Forum participants include Darin Samaha LMSW, Director of Community Services Schenectady, Lisa Ayers RN,BSN Director of Public Health Schenectady, Nancy Jones MHSA, CPP, Director of Prevention, New Choices Recovery Center and others from Ellis Hospital, There will also be a person in recovery and a representative from the Schenectady Police Department.

LWV of Brookhaven worked with the Suffolk County League of Women Voters to address a concern with pay-to-play issues in local government. County Legislator Trotta had introduced legislation to make it illegal for contractors and public employee unions to make campaign donations to government officials that might result in the award of contracts based on politics rather than merit. We spoke at the County Legislature commending Trotta for trying to find a solution, and we urged all the legislators to work together to correct this.

The LWV of Rochester has had cooperative efforts with organizations such as the National Council of Jewish Women, the Susan B. Anthony House, La Cumbre government committee, and so many others in the areas of Program and Voter Services. An exciting new voter registration effort is in the formative stages with the Islamic Center. In addition, a new partnership is being formed with Nazareth College, focusing on Getting Out The Vote (GOTV) among students. We hope to learn from the Nazareth students, and use that knowledge in future GOTV efforts at other local schools


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