Establishing our Progressive Iowa Network (PIN) – Update

Establishing our Progressive Iowa Network (PIN) – Update


By Caroline Vernon

This Saturday, June 9th, progressive leaders, legislators and activists from various organizations across Iowa will come together for the first DFA-Iowa Networking Summit.

We will be gathering at the Iowa City Public Library from 9am to 3pm (the last hour will be devoted to DFA-IA administrative business).

Some of our great leaders who will be in attendance include Charlie Chamberlain from Democracy for America, Ed Fallon, Denise O’Brien, and Senator Joe Bolkcom, just to name a few…

Once again, the purpose of this gathering is to establish a Progressive Iowa Network which will serve to better unite progressives across the state in order to support each others efforts around important issues, particularly if we hope to be more effective moving into the next legislative session. Besides providing an excellent opportunity to connect with fellow progressives, one direct benefit of an Iowa Network would be the enhanced ability to articulate our progressive world view by creating a state-wide echo chamber that will carry our unified message to all Iowans.    

As previously indicated, we have identified 5 issues in Iowa that require urgent action:

1.    VOICE (Voter-Owned Iowa Clean Elections)
2.    CAFO regulations / Farm Bill
3.    Fair Share
4.    Healthcare
5.    Media

Also, due to the recent vote on the Iraq supplemental bill, it is our hope that peace activists from across Iowa will take advantage of this opportunity to come together to discuss potential state wide initiatives that will effectively pressure those in Congress who voted for the bill.

In addition to addressing the above issues, we are tracking organizations by their particular area(s) of focus. This list has also evolved since my last blog:

1.    Policy / Research
2.    Lobbying
3.    Media & Blogs
4.    Grassroots Organizing

These 4 areas have been added:

5.    Direct Action
6.    Education
7.    Funding (to identify potential sources of funding)
8.    Political Campaigns (organizations who can be involved with                                campaigns)

We are working on compiling a comprehensive list of all participating organizations, including contact information, primary areas of focus and primary issues of concern. If you or your organization will be attending the summit, we ask that you submit your information using the example below (4 stars = primary focus)

Example:

Organization: Progressive Action for the Common Good
Address: 3707 Eastern Ave, Davenport, IA 52807
Contact Information: (name/position/phone/email):
Caroline Vernon, Organizer, 563-676-7580, carolina1961@gmail.com.
James Lee, Executive Director, 563-650-3922, jlee6367@yahoo.com

Areas of Focus                Rating                Issues                  Rating

Policy/Research                                    VOICE                ****
Lobbying                        **                 CAFO/Farm Bill      ***
Media/Blogs                                         Media                  **
Grassroots Organizing      ****               Fair Share            **
Direct Action                  ***                Healthcare           ***
Education                       **
Funding                          *                   Other: _Peace _  **** 
Poltical Campaigns



Please send the above information to carolina1961@gmail.com by Thursday, June 7th so we can be sure to include your information in the hand-out.

It is important to note that we encourage ALL progressive organizations to attend this meeting and become part of the network even if we may not be focusing on your specific issues at this time. The goal of the network is to create a framework designed to support all progressive initiatives. We need everyone’s participation in order to succeed.

If you have any questions, please call Caroline Vernon at 563-676-7580.

Hope to see you Saturday!

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