The League of Women Voters has two main areas of interest: Voter Education and Registration, and Advocacy.
Advocacy is what we are all about this February.
Advocacy, the ability of the League to speak with one voice on issues, happens only after we review, discuss and reach consensus on those issues, studies that the Virginia League has been working on for two years. The results of the consensus determine what our advocacy efforts will be.
Each League in the Commonwealth of Virginia has an opportunity to let their voice be heard through the process of reaching consensus on these studies. Join our League on Sunday afternoon, February 19, as we participate in one of the most important phases/processes of League membership.
A Little Background:
From a Study to Consensus to Position to Advocacy
What is a study?
A “study” ordinarily includes two years of research and analysis by a dedicated committee. Any given study, whether it be National, State, or Local, is thorough in its pursuit of facts and details. As the study progresses, a continuing discussion of pros and cons of each situation occurs. Prior to the results of the study being presented to the general membership, study committee members fashion consensus questions that are then addressed by the membership.
That is where we as a local League become involved.
How do We Reach Consensus?
We, our League of Women Voters of the Prince William and Fauquier Area, review the study and the consensus questions and decide whether or not we agree with the study. Yes, No, No Consensus and Comments are all a part of what we contribute to this process.
The “Position” is determined by consensus of the members after thoughtful research and study.
The League of Women Voters then can advocate on matters for which it has statements of Position.
On February 19 our PWFA League is gathering together to review the four studies that have been developed over the last two years. We will decide whether we agree with the results and reach consensus, or do not agree. This will be a zoom effort. Our comments will be collected and analyzed with all of the other Leagues and will result in the study either being accepted or rejected.
On Sunday afternoon, February 19, from 1:00 – 5:00, there will be a 15-minute Overview and 45-minute discussion and Q&A around each study. You do not need to attend all of the sessions, but please try to read the consensus questions and the briefing for any that you are interested in.
Because the studies are worthy of our careful thought, links to overviews of the studies, as well as presentations and consensus questions for each are found below. Please read the information so that we can have an informed discussion on each study. Each topic will have a leader who has worked on the study, and a member of our League to give assistance in developing replies and drafting positions. Our League members are listed in (parentheses).
1:00-2:00 pm Money in Politics – Janet Boyd (Barbara Amster)
2:00-3:00 pm Environmental Justice – Carolyn Caywood (Connie Gilman)
3:00-4:00 pm Education Equity – Beth Obenshain (Carol Noggle)
4:00-5:00 Child Care – Maria Posey (Carol Proven)
Money in Politics The analysis and proposed positions developed by this Campaign Finance Reform Study covers the full scope of financing from a donation through its expenditure including:
- • Public disclosure of the donor,
• Transparency in actual use of funds before and after the election,
• Limits on personal use, and
• The Virginia executive branch structure to conduct effective oversight and enforcement.
LWV-VA Money in Politics Study – YouTube
Environmental Justice The EPA defines “environmental justice” as the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies. This study will review how Virginia can best implement environmental justice to promote fairness and halt and prevent future racial and economic inequities.
LWV-VA Environmental Justice Study – YouTube
Education Equity First, a definition of a high-quality education, updated in the LWV-VA positions as education has changed rapidly regarding technology, broadband, special needs, etc. Second, the cost of providing that defined high-quality of education to all students in the Commonwealth’s school divisions. Does the state provide local school divisions sufficient funds to ensure that “educational programs of high quality” are available to all students? This will require an in-depth analysis of the capacity of each local school division to determine how costs should be apportioned between the state and the localities to compensate for vast differences in local capacity. The goal is to assure equity for all students. Third, what is Virginia’s capacity and effort to provide high-quality education compared to other states’ funding for K-12 education? This includes studying how other states fund school construction and modernization. In Virginia, this is the responsibility of each locality, resulting in wide discrepancies in the quality of school buildings and educational technology statewide.
Microsoft Word – 1.Consensus Questions.8.2.2022.docx (lwv-va.org)
(4) LWV-VA 2022-2023 Education Equity Study briefing – YouTube
Child Care The COVID-19 epidemic shined a strong spotlight on the inadequate nature of our state’s childcare system with hundreds of private facilities unable to remain open. Women are leaving the workforce in record numbers, and counties are left to figure out on their own how to offer emergency childcare to residents who need it.
LWV-VA 2022-2023 Child Care Study briefing – YouTube
Microsoft Word – LWV-VA Child Care Study Consensus Questions.docx
Attachment 2: Synthesis of Stakeholder Interviews (lwv-va.org)
Attachment 3: Glossary and Acronym List (lwv-va.org)
Attachment 4: Initial Literature Review (lwv-va.org)
LWV Childcare Study – REPORT DRAFT (lwv-va.org)
LWV-VA Child Care Study Presentation – September 2022
Here are the League’s Current Positions
• League of Women Voters of Virginia (LWV-VA) positions
• League of Women Voters of the United States (LWVUS) positions
• League of Women Voters of the National Capitol Area (LWVNCA) positions