Returning Citizens Postcards

By Phyllis Applebaum    Florida has the most restrictive voting laws for ex-felons in the nation.  In 2018, the Florida electorate, believing that people should have a second chance, passed an amendment allowing ex-felons who were not murderers or sex-offenders to vote once they had completed their sentence including probation.  However, the Florida legislature then passed a bill specifying that full payment of any ordered restitution, fines, fees, or costs was part of their sentence.  Even though some returning citizens have paid these fines and costs, they find it difficult to navigate the system alone. So, Voter Services in coordination with the LWVFL decided to send attractive postcards encouraging returning citizens to register to vote.  They sent out 6,000 postcards last week—writing each address and a message by hand.   One of our members, Carol Carnevale, has a mother who really wanted to help as well.  Louise Carnevale of Stuart

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Disposable City: Miami’s Future on the Shores of Climate Catastrophe

By Mario Alejandro Ariza   “When the waters come, please know you had kin who fought like hell to keep them from your door.”   The book’s “Dedication” reveals the author’s passion for fighting against climate change and why sea level rise will likely put Miami underwater by the end of this century.    Journalist and author, Mario Alejandro Ariza, hosted the Environmental Issues Group Zoom book discussion on September 5, and highlighted concerns not commonly associated with climate change, such as health issues, financial impact, and Miami’s social inequality – the gap between rich and poor.    Mario was prompted to write Disposable City when he was teaching English in the Hunan Province of China during the summer of 2015.  When he stepped outside, the smog was so thick that he couldn’t see the other side of the street. The smog lasted for days and he used an N-95 mask

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The Fragility of Voting Rights

The Fragility of Voting Rights

The Fragility of Voting Rights: The 2020 Election By Linda Geller-Schwartz On July 30, 2020, when the iconic civil rights leader Representative John Lewis was laid to rest, his final message to the American people was conveyed in a letter published in the New York Times. It included this advice and caution: “The vote is the most powerful non-violent change agent you have in a democratic society. You must use it because it is not guaranteed. You can lose it.” Representative Lewis knew all too well of what he spoke. Read the entire SAM Magazine article below. (3/20)

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When We All Vote

LWVPBC / The ‘When We All Vote’ Coalition Pays Dividends By Pam Maldonado   How do we reach a larger, more diverse audience? Since I joined the League six years ago which has been a prime concern. When we started live streaming our Hot Topics speakers we began to see our numbers climb. Suddenly, people who could not make it over to Atlantis were able to watch the videos at their leisure. Some of our Young Leaguers even got together on their lunch breaks to watch the programs live. Nonetheless, our audience remained overwhelmingly white.       A few months ago we joined the When We All Vote (WWAV) Palm Beach Voting Squad, a coalition of some 35 mostly Black organizations, including sororities and fraternities, the Cunningham Bar Association, Coalition of 100 Black Women, the Guardians of the Glades, National Organization for Women and a host of other NGOs. Headed by former

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All Voters Should Check Their Status ASAP

All Voters Should Check Their Status ASAP

By Pam Maldonado   Election Day will be upon us before we know it! Florida Election Statutes require Supervisors of Elections (SOEs) to close their books 29 days before the election, which means by 5 p.m. on October 5. People whose registration forms arrive after that date would not be able to vote in the Presidential Election this year.   If you have not done so already, please go to pbcelections.org/MyStatus and check your registration. Supervisors are required to do maintenance on voter rolls and there have been mistakes. For instance, in 2018 I heard an interview with the President of the Ohio LWV who of course, had voted in every recent election. She found out she had been dropped from the voter roll in error.   According to “Florida Today, March 4, 2020”, “Florida has put nearly 300,000 registered voters who voted in 2016 or later on “inactive” lists —

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My Experience as a Poll Worker

My Experience as a Poll Worker: My Memoirs  By Benjamin Aubrey    Report for the League of Women Voters on my personal experience as a Poll Worker during the 2020 Primary Election on Election Day (August 18). I was not looking forward to waking up at 4:20 a.m. during my summer break. Generally, I take advantage of staying up late and sleeping in late. However, when it was time to prepare myself for Election Day, I changed some of my lifestyle habits regarding my sleeping patterns. Fortunately, I was able to do this successfully. It helped that my precinct, Precinct 6118, is only a five-minute drive away from where I live. By 5:20 a.m., I arrived at my precinct, the Royal Palm Beach Library.    I brought my Poll Worker Manual and a large bag filled with snacks, water bottles, sandwiches, hand sanitizer, and extra masks, knowing the polling place

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National Suicide Prevention Month

National Suicide Prevention Month By Nancy Gau   Please reach out to family, friends, co-workers, (or even a stranger) and remind them that September is National Suicide Prevention Month, and encourage them to please pass the word on.    On average, there are 120 suicides every day in the United States. It is the tenth leading cause of death in America and the second leading cause for the age group 25-34! The suicide rate among young adults (ages 15-24) has tripled since 1950. We can help reduce these numbers by spreading awareness, advocating, educating, and kindness. Also, three LWVPBC Issue Groups (Healthcare, Gun Safety, and Education) will be working together to find solutions to this issue. These plans are currently on hold due to the pandemic, but we still communicate, e.g., Becky Pickup and Kristin Murtaugh presented a piece about the “lock it up” program during one of our weekly

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2020 Ballot Amendments

Confused about the 2020 Ballot Amendments?   What does Amendment 1, which is labeled ‘Suffrage’, really do?   Who is supporting Amendment 4, which makes it much harder for citizen initiatives to become ballot amendments? Do they know how confusing calling it Amendment 4 will be?  (Yes!)   Two proposals affecting taxes? Are they good for our towns and cities? Are they good for us?   Come to the Voting Rights Coalition meeting Thursday, September 3, at 2 p.m. on Zoom, and learn about these proposed Amendments and more. Linda Geller-Schwartz will present our League Florida  PowerPoint on the 2020 Ballot Amendments.  Go to the League calendar to get the Zoom link.   Catch up on our 2020 elections projects, and learn how you can help.   –Nancy Cohen   

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Voters’ Guide September 1st Report

It always takes a village… Voters’ Guide. This could be written several ways, with an apostrophe after the “s” or before it or with no apostrophe at all. Indeed, sometimes it could be just “Voter Guide.” The correct version in this instance is the way it’s written on the hard copy. This year it took 44 League members attending 10 Zoom meetings followed by a lot of time and hard work to produce our free League of Women Voters of Palm Beach County 2020 Nonpartisan Voters’ Guide, Joyce Sullivan organized the Guide volunteers into several teams: candidate question team; editorial; distribution; digital; social media; information technology; and design. You have to be proud – Palm Beach County is the ONLY League in the state of Florida that prints a complete hard copy Voters’ Guide. All the other League chapters rely only on vote411.org to relay their information, use the copies

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