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MAY 2017

We are committed to making Janesville a more inclusive community, defined as a diverse community with equal access to respect and opportunity, goods and services, civic participation and decision-making, and the ability of all to thrive. We believe this work begins with our own membership. We will demonstrate this commitment through the following actions:

  • By engaging and educating our members and our community on topics related to inclusion and the challenges encountered by our diverse residents in achieving the vision ascribed to by the LWV.

  • By conducting intentional voter registration and education outreach to diverse populations, with an initial emphasis on Hispanic/Latino citizens. Registration activities will address language barriers.

  • By soliciting diverse input and including questions related to diversity and inclusion in LWV sponsored candidate forums.

  • By placing the following diversity statement on our website and publishing the same in our monthly newsletter.

    The Janesville LWV commits to the diversity of Janesville. This means that there will be no barriers to participation in any activity of the Janesville LWV on the basis of race, national origin, creed, age, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, economic status, political activity or disability. (Note: pursuant to LWV policies, LWV Board Members are prohibited in active participation in any partisan election)

The LWV shall

  • Encourage members to actively participate in groups representing and responding to the interests of Janesville's diverse residents such as 4th Ward Neighborhood Groups, the Diversity Action Team/Courageous Conversations, the YWCA Racial Justice Program.

  • Secure an organizational membership in the Beloit/Rock County Chapter of the NAACP and encourage individual LWV members to join as well.

  • Incorporate diversity as an element of new-member orientation.

  • Challenge study committees to include input from diverse communities in study exploration and to integrate the needs of diverse citizens in study work and conclusions.

  • Recommend additional study topics related to the issue of diversity (e.g., no-box policies, criminal justice reform including but not limited to alternatives to incarceration, driver's licenses for immigrants)

  • Encourage inclusiveness within all public institutions serving Janesville residents including diverse representation of decision-makers and staff at all levels of these organizations, ongoing education of staff, delivery of culturally relevant services including the interpretation of key materials, and regular input from diverse stakeholders.

Next Steps

  • Recommend renewal of the Diversity Study Committee for at least one year. The Study Committee will accept the task of organizing educational activities and may pursue additional study as noted in the above recommendations.

  • Recommended focus of educational work includes but is not limited to white privilege and expansion of community understanding of minority status, experience, and barriers.

  • Host, or collaborate to host, specific educational opportunities for LWV and community members (e.g., Book Club in a bag or alternatives).

  • Incorporate information regarding Voter ID assistance and complaint resources on the Janesville LWV website and encourage the WI LWV to create a Voter ID assistance hotline to centralize submission of concerns related to Voter ID.

  • Advocate the creation of a Community Ombudsman position at the community level to advocate for the vision established by the LWV and to support both public and private organizations in efforts to position themselves to engage and serve Janesville's growing diverse population.

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