We Need Your Help

Due to a lack of interest in helping to facilitate a march for transportation, the scheduled event for July 31st, 2018 has been cancelled. It’s not something that we had advertised, just an event that was brought up in passing in recent discussions. An email was sent about a week or two ago to those of you on the direct email list asking for help to organize this event, but no one responded in enough time to sufficiently begin planning. More events are already being planned (for this year and next), so please look out for that information.

Public events are difficult to organize, and it is even harder to get people to participate. Still, if we hope to make a difference – for progressive change – then we must be prepared to do more than simply “liking” and commenting on social media. A number of you are out there and involved in numerous causes, and that is admirable (KEEP IT UP!), yet, there are far too many who follow the messages of this organization without directly getting involved in some way. The question which must be asked is “why?”

You may be working 40+ hours a week. Your work hours may be inconvenient for political activism. Childcare needs might be a factor. Health issues may be disabling your involvement. It also may be the case that you – as noted before – are overwhelmed with other activism. All of those are justifiable reasons for not getting engaged fully, but there may be some way that you can lend a hand.

If you can’t attend meetings or at least participate in organized events, offer to help promote these things in whatever spare time you may have. Obviously, you can always spend your free time composing letters to the editor, writing, messaging, or calling loved ones as well as our elected officials. There is always something that you can do. Not sure what to do? Just ask for advice and we will be sure to send you a list of possible tasks.

As for those of you whose only excuse is that you want to spend your free time at home relaxing, the question must be reiterated: why?! Why is it more important for you to relax than to be out there demanding progressive change? Are you not concerned about the future of this country? Don’t you care about the assault on everything we progressives have accomplished? There is a very real ideological war raging – against our values and against democracy itself – and you are sitting there in front of your computer or television and/or holding that damn phone in front of your face instead of getting up and resolving to do anything in your power to make a difference? Why?!

Don’t you know that your vote isn’t enough? No wonder why so many of our peers consistently say they don’t vote because “it doesn’t change anything”. In fact, the problem is that too many of us who do vote just go back to our daily lives and do nothing to demand that our representatives take action. That – the lack of consistent and persistent activism – is the self-fulfilling prophecy which enables the nonvoters to claim that voting doesn’t matter!

There are numerous activists trying their best to make a difference, but we can’t do this all alone. No, not anymore. This is a serious, all-hands-on-deck, emergency and you – yes, YOU – are a citizen ON CALL for DUTY. There’s no excuse for your lack of interest in activism in this day and age unless you are childless, have no surviving loved ones, and care only about yourself. Even then, it is STILL in your best interest to do something.

THE VERY LEAST you can do is to help spread the word on the various causes you see shared by the Licking County Progressives and the numerous like-minded organizations. However, if you have nothing which significantly prevents your participation, doing the LEAST is inexcusable. The point is that we need you to do more than bitch about politics amongst coworkers and loved ones, and if you don’t really care then we need you to start caring.

Pay attention to what is going on at the local, state, national, and international stages. At every single level our values are under siege by the forces of greed, fascism, and injustice. If you are a progressive you MUST be determined to help in a concrete way and there is no better time than now for you to start.

With love,

Daniel – Licking County Progressives

June 2018 Meeting Minutes and Tentative Schedule for August 2018 Meeting

Agenda for Monthly Progressive Business Meeting
8/7/18
7-9pm
24 Mill St., Newark, OH
Subject to Change

• Introduction (5 Mins. 7:00-7:05)
• Summer of Labor Update (5 Mins. 7:05-7:10)
• City-Based Activism (5 Mins. 7:10-7:15)
• Working Families First (5 Mins. 7:15-7:20)
• Endorsements? (5 Mins. 7:20-7:25)
• Open Discussion (If Desired) (95 Mins. 7:25-9:00)
• Adjourn (9:00)

 

Minutes for Progressive Meeting
6/5/18

• We discussed the success of the Fair Districts Fair Elections effort. The FDFE is now pushing for better districts – via court ruling – prior to the 2020 census.
• We also touched on some updates about the Summer of Labor. The original dates for the series for 2018 has been modified. June 21st will now be the first of three Summer of Labor planning committee meetings, with a gathering planned for 2-3:30pm at the library in Meeting Room A. This will be followed by meetings on July 17th and August 21st, both in Meeting Room B at the library from 4-5:30pm on both dates. In addition, We are hoping to host a march in Downtown Newark for Public Transportation on July 31st. We will also be partaking in the labor day parade on additional festivities that day and looking forward to our second annual Democracy Day in September. Finally, on Tuesday, June 12th, there will be a final meeting for the Community Spring Discussion Series on Transportation.
• We highlighted the effort to spread the word on Working Families First via the weblog, website registration, and through postcards that we can and should canvass to have citizens fill out during the summer and beyond.
• We briefly noted that if any candidates at the county, state district, or local level want an endorsement, they merely need to ask and we will post the request before everyone who follows us on facebook.
• We also had a brief update about Move To Amend, which apparently plans on promoting an initiative relative to Citizens United in Westerville.

Final Agenda for June 5th Meeting and Notes from Second Transportation Community Spring Discussion

Agenda for Monthly Progressive Business Meeting

6/5/18

7-9pm

24 Mill St., Newark, OH

Subject to Change

 

  • Introduction (5 Mins. 7:00-7:05)
  • Fair Districts = Fair Elections Update/Review  (5 Mins. 7:05-7:10)
  • Summer of Labor Update (5 Mins. 7:10-7:15)
  • City-Based Activism (5 Mins. 7:15-7:20)
  • Working Families First (5 Mins. 7:20-7:25)
  • Endorsements? (5 Mins. 7:25-7:30)
  • Open Discussion (If Desired) (90 Mins. 7:30-9:00)
  • Adjourn (9:00)

 

 

Notes from Second Community Spring Discussion on Transportation

5/15/18

 

  • 1) Writing a Letter
  1. a) We must unify behind a core message that we want to send.
  2. b) We need to determine what our goal is; relating to how the public should respond to the letter campaign.
  3. c) We must decide on our goal relative to how these letters will woo officeholders.
  • 2) Summer Organizing
  1. a) It could be helpful to hold a march or rally: perhaps we can attach this to one of the Summer of Labor events.
  2. b) We ought to have a coordinated plan to address the naysayers who oppose our efforts.
  3. c) Attending all public meetings and attempting to address the officeholders as a unit can help.
  4. d) We should draft the survey we discussed before.
  5. e) Our efforts could be aided as part of the Working Families First Initiative.
  • 3) Coordinate with Others
  1. a) The Newark Think Tank on Poverty has valuable outreach experience.
  2. b) The Freedom School of Licking County has the ability to help us educate the public and generate a helpful community conversation.
  3. c) The Licking County Progressives are ready to take a stand on this as political activists.
  • 4) Pressure on the Politicians
  1. a) Keep contacting and lobbying action from current elected officials (get them on record).
  2. b) Compel each candidate to stake a position and show them that there is a groundswell of support.
  • 5) Disseminating Information
    1. a) Some/most citizens need to be educated about the problem and the available solutions.
    2. b) If possible, some form of regular newsletter could help educate and generate support.
    3. c) Entertainment of some form which addresses the problem and solution could go a long way in educating while keeping it interesting.

Agenda for Second Gathering in the Community Spring Discussion on Transportation – May 15th, 2018

Date: May 15th

Time: 6-8pm

Location: Meeting Room A at the Newark Public Library in Downtown Newark (101 W. Main Street)

Agenda/Details:

This is the second discussion in the series on transportation.

Agenda:

1) Brief review of previous gathering.

2) “Let’s Write a Letter!”
a) Core Message
b) Public Engagement Goal
c) Officeholder Outreach

3) Organizing for the Summer
a) Rally/March?
b) Dealing with detractors
c) Public Meetings
d) Survey
e) Working Families First

4) Coordinating with Others
a) The Newark Think Tank on Poverty
b) The Freedom School of Licking County
c) The Licking County Progressives

5) Pressure on Politicians
a) Elected Officials
b) Candidates

6) Disseminating Information
a) Education
b) Newsletters?
c) Theater?
d) Additional Options?

7) Adjourn

Paid for by the Licking County Progressives.

May 2018 Meeting Minutes and Tentative Agenda for June Meeting

Agenda for Monthly Progressive Business Meeting

6/5/18

7-9pm

24 Mill St., Newark, OH

Subject to Change

 

  • Introduction (5 Mins. 7:00-7:05)
  • Fair Districts = Fair Elections Update/Review  (5 Mins. 7:05-7:10)
  • Summer of Labor Update (5 Mins. 7:10-7:15)
  • City-Based Activism (5 Mins. 7:15-7:20)
  • Working Families First (5 Mins. 7:20-7:25)
  • Open Discussion (If Desired) (95 Mins. 7:25-9:00)
  • Adjourn (9:00)

 

 

Minutes for Progressive Meeting

5/1/18

 

  • We discussed what will probably be the final update on the Fair Districts Fair Elections campaign. The group is trying to promote the passage of Issue One. They’re considering handing out leaflets near polling locations, and we briefly talked about the need for them to be aware of the rules on doing so.
  • We highlighted the upcoming Summer of Labor schedule, and how it was recently tweaked to reduce the number of dates. The final dates are as follows (starting with the Community Spring schedule): (Corporate Personhood “Birthday”) May 10th, (Community Spring Discussions) May 15th, June 12th, (Working Families Bash!) June 21st, (Restore the Dream Rally) July 17th and (Where’s the Dream? Panel Discussion) 31st, (Economic Fairness March) August 21st, (Labor Day Parade and Debriefing) September 3rd, and (Democracy Day) September 17th. We plan on starting advertising for the Summer of Labor – specifically with respect to Democracy Day – in the coming weeks.
  • We noted the city-based activism: the gazebo group is still around and awaiting answers, but not currently planning anything major, there is more of a controversy around the discussion on closing off the pedestrian bridge which crosses State Routes 79 and 16, we mentioned the need to keep our eyes on the drift towards gentrification, brought up the food deserts such as the one created by the closure of Lil Bear, and – as expected – went more in depth on the need for transportation and how that discussion is progressing locally.
  • We addressed Working Families First, underlined the overlapping interests and goals, reviewed the film and discussion event on April 14th, it was noted that more film discussions are to come soon, and we briefly pointed out that we would like to help with post-primary canvassing to help build a network.

Final Agenda for May Business Meeting

Agenda for Monthly Progressive Business Meeting

5/1/18

7-9pm

24 Mill St., Newark, OH

Subject to Change

 

  • Introduction (5 Mins. 7:00-7:05)
  • Fair Districts = Fair Elections Update  (5 Mins. 7:05-7:10)
  • Summer of Labor Update (5 Mins. 7:10-7:15)
  • City-Based Activism (5 Mins. 7:15-7:20)
  • Working Families First (5 Mins. 7:20-7:25)
  • Open Discussion (If Desired) (95 Mins. 7:25-9:00)
  • Adjourn (9:00)

Minutes from First Community Spring Event on March 27th, 2018

Community Spring Discussion Series: Transportation (1st Meeting)

• Discussion led by Daniel Crawford. Introduced himself with his background in local politics/activism and noted the brief history of the Licking County Progressives.
• Testimonials: Crawford discussed past history of having to walk to and from work at the age of 19 for up to 5 hours round trips (about 3 hours when on a bike) in all weather conditions when taking a taxi or carpooling proved unreliable. Also noted how he has since had to provide regular rides to family, including his ex-wife all due to a lack of public transportation despite a busy schedule. From the others in attendance, we learned stories about how one gentleman living in Newark provided another with a ride from Mt. Vernon to Hebron, another citizen reportedly had to walk 7 miles so that they could participate in mandatory AA meetings and regain custody of their children. Another reportedly had to share a vehicle with their roommate. Another apparently had to ride a bike from Granville to Columbus in order to then take a COTA bus. It was pointed out that in our recent past Newark and Licking County citizens had access to “Park and Ride” service via the COTA bus and that one also used to be able to visit numerous cities by train. An affordable service called “Go Bus” was also mentioned.
• Past Committees and Inaction: we discussed the past efforts led by the Freedom School in 2011 (which inspired an extensive study) and the Newark Think Tank on Poverty after that. In both cases, the City of Newark and other local government bodies chose not to act. Crawford shared his recent experience as a champion for Nonpartisan elections in Newark wherein he served on the Charter Review Commission in 2017 and pushed for action, managed to get consensus on the City needing to create a study group to further explore the issue, but that the City has since ignored the issue entirely. Crawford’s primary connecting concern with these examples is that the lack of public pressure on the policymakers will open the door to the City, the Transit Board, and the County ignoring the need for public transportation – despite the progress of the current “Transport Licking County” committees – much like how they did in the past and like how the City has so far continued to not act on studying nonpartisan elections. Crawford, for an example on a guide for future action, pointed out the success story (which arguably happened because of a grassroots and community-centered lobbying/activist effort) in the Newark Think Tank promoting Newark’s city government to “Ban the Box” which made it significantly easier for returning citizens to at least apply for a job with the City.
• Plan to Take Action: here we discussed a number of possibilities, including extensive community outreach, letters to the editor, contacting local government officials (preferably by phone over by email, since it is harder to ignore a phone call), social media organizing, commenting on relevant news media articles to help draw attention to the need, attending, occupying, and speaking at meetings of each relevant local governing body, and with public demonstrations.
• As an extension of the plans to take action: it was stated that we need to come up with a plan as well as wait for candidates and officeholders to propose a plan that we could then support., the current work of Transport Licking County’s committees was highlighted (including a series of public and business surveys and some research on the cost), it was said that we should find out the local work shifts which could instruct us as to when the need was greatest, expressed that we should survey other beneficiaries such as church-goers, some believe that the number one focus of transportation is a reliable route to and from work, an idea for organizing 10 citizens who need a ride to sign a petition seeking help with a reliable busing service at the same times and same location, it was suggested that we look into “Ask Kent (Mallett…the Advocate reporter)”, another participant pointed out that we can cite the examples of Medina and Mt. Vernon’s transit systems the latter of which you can call for a ride and travel anywhere within the city for a dollar, it was suggested that we organize a number of people (possibly including local politicians) to use and document their use of public transit where it exists, hosting a march or rally was suggested complete with citizens/speakers talking about transportation as well as spots for sign-ups/petitions and some musical entertainment that the organizers to learn ahead of time and partake in, it was noted that we can host a party, and it was noted that we should reach out and ask where people need to be transported and when they need that transportation.
• Next meeting is April 17th, where we will be deciding our first plan of action and delving more deeply into advanced planning.

Final Agenda for April 2018 Business Meeting

Agenda for Monthly Progressive Business Meeting

4/3/18

7-9pm

24 Mill St., Newark, OH

Subject to Change

 

  • Introduction (5 Mins. 7:00-7:05)
  • Fair Districts = Fair Elections Update  (5 Mins. 7:05-7:10)
  • Summer of Labor Update (5 Mins. 7:10-7:15)
  • Gazebo and Related Activism (5 Mins. 7:15-7:20)
  • Working Families First (5 Mins. 7:20-7:25)
  • Working America (5 Mins. 7:25-7:30)
  • Open Discussion (If Desired) (90 Mins. 7:30-9:00)
  • Adjourn (9:00)

March 2018 Progressive Meeting Minutes and Tentative Schedule for April 2018 Meeting

Agenda for Monthly Progressive Business Meeting
4/3/18
7-9pm
24 Mill St., Newark, OH
Subject to Change

• Introduction (5 Mins. 7:00-7:05)
• Fair Districts = Fair Elections Update (5 Mins. 7:05-7:10)
• Summer of Labor Update (5 Mins. 7:10-7:15)
• Gazebo and Related Activism (5 Mins. 7:15-7:20)
• Working Families First (5 Mins. 7:20-7:25)
• Working America (5 Mins. 7:25-7:30)
• Open Discussion (If Desired) (90 Mins. 7:30-9:00)
• Adjourn (9:00)

 

Minutes for Progressive Meeting
3/6/18

• It was reported that there is a small amount of controversy amongst the Fair Districts Fair Elections organizers pertinent to whether or not they should continue collecting signatures up to and maybe beyond the May primary featuring the proposed ballot issue offered by state Republicans. The organization may need help with strategy as they look towards further signature collection. There is a suspicion that state Republicans are trying to sabotage the ballot measure. The low-end goal for signatures is 450,000 total.
• The Summer of Labor was discussed: one member noted that the local Department of Job and Family Services has their own event called “Summer of Labor” which features the providing of resources to people looking for work and a “suggestion box” for ideas to help get people off of assistance. Another member pointed out that they may know someone with some labor connections who might be able to help organize the “Summer of Labor”. The Working Class Discussion Series opening discussion event had been rescheduled for the 27th, but is still lacking a location. We are presently looking for a place to host such.
• A member highlighted an App called “Vote Spotter” which can be useful for identifying: each elected representative, information on debated legislation as well as the known positions of each representative, suggestions for organizing to lobby action for or against said legislation, and permits quick contact of representatives. There is also a website for the App, but it doesn’t function as well as on a smart phone. It should also be noted that push polling may plague the App.
• We discussed the current status of the Gazebo Preservation group: the organizers had been feeling discouraged due to a lack of action/success/participation. A recent ceremony for “Preservation of Heritage” which gave the Commissioners and the Mayor of Newark awards for supposedly helping to preserve local history fired up the spirit of resentment within the group as it felt like a mockery. Councilman Cost told one of the Gazebo group members that the County is responsible for spending on the Gazebo now; hinting that it is entirely out of the City’s hands.
• A member asked if we should start organizing directly against local gentrification policies – specifically to demonstrate and lobby against certain development – and to be more forceful in demanding a “seat at the table”. It was affirmed by the attending membership that doing so would be a good idea.
• In combining a discussion of Working America’s Licking County Chapter, on the upcoming canvassing campaign for Working Families First, and in kicking off the new Licking County Progressives PAC: we discussed how helping with each of these efforts can go a long way in aggressively promoting unity of the working class and in advocating for progressive candidates and policies; starting with political organizing on the issue of gentrification with the symbolism of the Gazebo.
• We noted the upcoming “March for Our Lives” event on March 24th at 2pm: this is looking for promotion of local, state, and federal action. Our goal must be to educate, be persistent, maintain civility, “make it harder to kill”, and to reassure everyone that the “NRA isn’t the majority”.
• Under open discussion: we talked about possibly forming a reading group for the book entitled “Dark Money”, we highlighted the need for an educational push to guide our fellow citizens in spotting/avoiding fake news stories (better vetting is needed), a documentary on Netflix called “Dirty Money” was noted, we also talked briefly about another interesting and enlightening book called “Democracy in Chains”. We also talked about a film showing and brief discussion at the Library – hosted by the LC/Working Families First – on April 14th at 1:30pm featuring “The Gilded Age”. An App called “Pocket” was also briefly discussed.

Final Agenda for 3/6/18 Meeting

Agenda for Monthly Progressive Business Meeting

3/6/18

7-9pm

24 Mill St., Newark, OH

Subject to Change

 

  • Introduction (5 Mins. 7:00-7:05)
  • Fair Districts = Fair Elections Update  (5 Mins. 7:05-7:10)
  • Summer of Labor Update (5 Mins. 7:10-7:15)
  • Working Class Discussion Series (5 Mins. 7:15-7:20)
  • Vote Spotter (5 Mins. 7:20-7:25)
  • Gazebo and Related Activism (5 Mins. 7:25-7:30)
  • Working Families First (5 Mins. 7:30-7:35)
  • Working America (5 Mins. 7:35-7:40)
  • LCP PAC (5 Mins. 7:40-7:45)
  • Action on Guns (5 Mins. 7:45-7:50)
  • Open Discussion (If Desired) (70 Mins. 7:50-9:00)
  • Adjourn (9:00)