FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 14, 2023
Communications Chair, LWVWA
League of Women Voters of Washington Adopts Two New Positions
Positions address impact of local journalism on democracy and prioritizing environmental impact in shoreline management decisions.
Seattle, WA—TheLeague of Women Voters of Washington Board of Directors adopted two new positions on April 10, 2023, after League members throughout the state spent over two years researching, publishing studies, and reaching consensus. The two positions are the Local News and Shoreline Management positions, which will be available in full at www.lwvwa.org.
The Local News position states, “The League of Women Voters of Washington believes it is the responsibility of the government to support credible local journalism that includes comprehensive reporting which informs the public about the decisions and actions of their government, and which holds civic and social leaders accountable to their constituents.”
LWVWA President Lunell Haught explained the position doesn’t spell out the type of support that might be warranted, although she emphasized that League members are clear that support must not impede the independence of news operations. “Regardless of any support that might be provided, control of all content must remain exclusively with the news organizations,” she said.
The Shoreline Management position states, “The primary goal of the Shoreline Management Act is to protect the ecological functions of our shorelines. Therefore, when balancing legislative goals, environmental protection should be overarching and not considered co-equal to the goals of development.”
Haught noted that the League has had a long history of supporting conservation efforts and working with the state around the Shoreline Management Act. “LWVWA has long recognized that effective land stewardship includes our shorelines, and shorelines impact all of Washington, even places far from the coast,” she said.
Haught said the League uses a time-tested method for taking positions on issues. Members study an issue, hold local League meetings to develop consensus on the issues raised by the study, develop a written position statement, which is then approved by the state board. Once these positions are approved, they can be used for advocacy by the League of Women Voters of Washington and local Leagues across the state.
The League of Women Voters of Washington is a nonpartisan political organization. We encourage the informed and active participation of citizens in government. The League acts in support of, or in opposition to, selected governmental issues that its members have studied. It does not support or oppose candidates or political parties.