Welcome to the Democracy Lobby Week for Fix Democracy First and the League of Women Voters of Washington! Consider this webpage your event "venue"—this is where you come to join the different sessions in which you want to participate. Each session has its own little box below with the information you need to participate, including that session's unique zoom link and—depending on how things go on our tech end—maybe even links to recording of the sessions if you want to catch up on something you missed.
If you are looking for more detailed descriptions of the different sessions, scroll down to view our Detailed Agenda.
A Note about Legislator Meetings
On Saturday, we sent out a personalized email to registrants with their scheduled legislator meetings. We will send out reminders again Wednesday afternoon. You can also see the full schedule here.
Once your legislator meeting is over, please fill out our Legislator Meeting Follow-up so we can track any commitments made, outcomes achieved, and actions needed for follow-up.
Monday February 22
Tuesday February 23
Wednesday February 24
Thursday February 25
Check your email for your Zoom meeting information. If you can't find the emailed information, email Kathy Sakahara at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday February 26
Monday February 22
9 a.m.–12:30 p.m.
Main program for the day with bill review, talking points, and speakers.
Download Handouts for Monday
Legislative District Networking
In this networking session we will be using Breakout Rooms for each district to meet the others on your team and discuss any legislator meetings, as well as select a lead person for those. If we have your district information, you will automatically be assigned and added to your appropriate LD Breakout Room. If not, you’ll first go to the main room and we’ll manually add you to the appropriate room.
Allyship: Supporting Black, Indigenous & Communities of Color
Allyship involves re-learning the way you see the world, viewing situations not from the lens of your own experience or perspective, but based on the realities and experiences of others. Learn how you can become a better ally and support diversity, equity and inclusion in our communities across Washington State.
Ranked Choice Voting: Now More Than Ever
Are you curious to learn more about Ranked-Choice Voting? Why is this reform being proposed to resolve the Yakima WA Voting Rights case? Learn how this simple, common sense, non-partisan reform can make voting more powerful, make campaigns more civil, and strengthen our democracy.
Tuesday February 2310–11 a.m.
Shining the Light on Money in Elections: Get to know our PDC
The Public Disclosure Commission has been working since 1972 to collect information, enforce state laws, and provide immediate and open access to information on campaign finance. Contributions and expenditures have increased exponentially and the PDC has responded with increased technology to provide better disclosure. This will be good time to see the tools the PDC has developed and hear what they are working on in the world of digital advertising.
County Auditors Reflect on Current and Future Election Legislation
As the people responsible for everything involved in conducting our elections, from maintaining voter rolls to counting the ballots, our county auditors bring a unique and valuable perspective on democracy legislation. Come meet auditors representing a wide array of political and policy experience to discuss the issues behind current legislation including election security and the voters’ pamphlet, as well as election issues on the horizon, including signatures and keeping up with growing challenges to security. And of course they'll be available to answer your questions.
Empowering Small Donors: Public Funding in Elections
How can public funding of elections empower small donors and diversity campaigns? What is a democracy voucher program? Come learn how Seattle’s first of it’s kind innovative "democracy voucher" program helps diversify campaign donors and candidates and improves representativeness of Seattle residents, and why other cities and jurisdictions across the country are looking to adopt similar programs.
The Fight to Vote: Voting Rights Restoration
What is Voting Rights Restoration? Right now, as many as 26,000 Washingtonians can’t vote even though they are paying taxes, contributing to their communities, and working hard for their families. It’s time to restore voting rights to formerly incarcerated persons immediately when they return to their community. Come hear from people who have been personally impacted by this issue and learn how you can help support legislation to restore voting rights.
Wednesday February 24
How to Boldly Advocate for Equity in Hyperpartisan Times
Explore how nonpartisan and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) policies function together in nonpartisan advocacy work. Nonpartisan means not supporting or opposing candidates or political parties, while still working to influence public policies, especially those that impact equity issues, through education and advocacy. These and other issues today are framed in partisan terms and this session explores how to uphold nonpartisan values for fairness, justice, and equity.
Making Our Tax Structure More Fair
The State of Washington’s tax structure is upside down. Those with the lowest- income among us pay six times more in state and local taxes than the top one percent. This is an issue for democracy; the system is extremely undemocratic. Additionally, the people paying the most are disproportionately people of color, which makes the system even less fair. Many have long advocated for a more adequate tax structure, and one that is fair. This year the Legislature is considering a variety of bills, which in combination would make our system both more fair and closer to adequate. Learn about the capital gains tax, wealth tax, estate tax revisions and working families tax exemption, as well as other measures associated with these that can both raise the amount paid by those with means and provide greater relief and assistance to those at the bottom of the income spectrum.
Hope for Democracy: How an election reform you’ve never heard of gives voters more power with Citizen Initiative Revie w
Citizens’ Initiative Reviews (CIRs) are a powerful tool to help voters make better decisions on initiatives based on thorough analysis by carefully chosen citizen panels. Research consistently found high-quality deliberation on the CIR panels, and that reading the CIR summary helps voters make more informed choices, encourages voter turnout, and bolsters civic engagement. John Gastil is recognized as the international authority on CIRs and their positive impact. Far from a stodgy academic, he is entertaining and makes this story accessible, as he and co-author Katherine Knobloch do in their 2020 book, Hope for Democracy: How Citizens Can Bring Reason Back into Politics.
The Washington legislature will be considering a bill (SB 5250) to bring a CIR to the state in 2022 and you can help make that happen! Come join this discussion and learn how you can start supporting this work now so that we can continue to be the leaders in representative democracy.
Thursday February 25
Redistricting: Why it Matters
The success of our unique form of democracy depends on equitable and trusted representation. Elected officials should represent the rights, needs and desires of all residents. However, currently our democracy is threatened by partisan gerrymandering, secret map drawing and challenges in the courts. With Congressional and State legislative districts to be redrawn in 2021, now is the time to get informed and get involved. Come hear about gerrymandering (old-school packing, and cracking), newer efficiency metrics, and what can be done to ensure a better process. Fast paced and filled with modern details, this talk will solidify the importance of redistricting and spur you to action.
Goals of the Presentation
Friday February 262-3 p.m.
National Legislation to Restore Democracy: For the People & John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act
What can be done nationally to help fortify our democracy? Come learn about the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to restore and strengthen the Voting Rights Act, and the For the People Act, which would expand Americans’ access to the ballot box, reduce the influence of big money in politics, strengthen ethics rules, and implement anti-corruption measures, as well as how you can help pass this important legislation.
Democracy Lobby Week Debrief & Happy Hour
Grab your favorite drink and come discuss how your legislator meetings went, what you thought of the programs, and socialize with your fellow attendees!