Making Democracy Work

Because Democracy is not a Spectator Sport

The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization encouraging the informed and active participation of citizens in government. It influences public policy through education and advocacy.
Fall Candidate Events are almost upon us! Dates, times and locations coming soon. FacebookTwitter

Women's Equality Day Celebration - August 26, 2015 - 5:30pm

Celebrating South Bend Women:
150 Years of Leadership, Service and Achievement

The League of Women Voters of the South Bend Area, The South Bend (IN) Chapter of The Links, Incorporated, in partnership with the YWCA North Central Indiana, the Michiana Women Leaders Project and the Indiana University South Bend Civil Rights Heritage Center, will host Celebrating South Bend Women: 150 Years of Leadership, Service and Achievement on Women's Equality Day, August 26, 2015 from 5:30 to 7:30pm at the IU South Bend Civil Rights Heritage Center on 1040 West Washington in South Bend.

The event will celebrate SB150, the 95th anniversary of the adoption of the 19th amendment, and the 95th anniversary of the League of Women Voters.

Showcasing twenty-one area women, both living and deceased,the even will feature photographs and written biographical narratives gleaned from personal interviews and/or historical records. In creating the educational exhibit, the organizations strived to identify women who have contributed in some significant way to the past, present and future of South Bend: Women who have blazed new trails, have been relentless advocates, have guided the community through change, have supported the arts and other cultural assets, or have dedicated their lives to caring for or educating others

Annual Planning Meeting August 29, 2015 - Julia Vaughn on Indiana Redistricting Reform

The 2015 Indiana General Assembly (HEA 1003) authorized an 18-month study on redistricting reform, and Julia Vaughn, Policy Director for Common Cause in Indiana will attend our 2015 Annual Planning Meeting to provide an update on statewide redistricting efforts and help us plan our local strategy. We'll also plan other LWV South Bend Area initiatives for the coming year. Now is the time to help shape your League's activities. Please RSVP to

1918 Southern View 10:00am - 2:00pm.

Please arrive beginning at 9:30 and we'll convene promptly at 10:00. Potluck Lunch!

Redistricting resources from LWVUS

Lunch with the League - September 11, 2015 at Noon:

Laura Baker, Executive Direct of Reading for Life: "Changing Perspectives: The Counter Culture of Reading for Life.

South Bend Chocolate Cafe 122 S. Michigan st. South bend, IN 46601

Event begins at noon. Come as early as 11:30 to order lunch. This event is free and open to the public.

School to Prison Pipeline Forum - September 12

Don't miss this -- A COMMUNITY FORUM: BREAK THE SCHOOL TO PRISON PIPELINE, Saturday, September 12, 2015 -- IU South Bend, Wiekamp Hall

For more info or to volunteer: The next planning committee meeting will be held on Tuesday, July 21st. For more information, please write to or contact Linda Wolfson 574-234-7235 or Regina Williams-Preston 514-9327.

LWV Indiana 95th Anniversary Celebration - September 26, 2015

LWVIN invites us to attend this celebration, which includes an address by Professor Sheila Seuss Kennedy, recognition of LWV Indiana Lifetime Members, commemorative displays, League stories, review of League work.

Time: Noon - 2:30 p.m. Location: The Athenaeum in Indianapolis

Register before September 18! (contact Geri Pawelski for registration form:

Cost: $26 includes buffet meal and parking in Anthenaeum lot.

If you are interested in a carpooling to Indianapolis for this special event, please contact Lisa Plencner (

LWV Indiana Education Study

In 2015 local Leagues will participate in the LWV Indiana Education study by considering concurrence with the single position statement:

League of Women Voters of Indiana supports a free, publicly-funded, non-sectarian system of schools serving all the state's children from pre-school through 12th grade.

LWV South Bend Area will complete its discussion in time to meet a January 2016 deadline. Following that, there will be a consensus study for 2016, with reporting at the start of 2017.

Visit for suggested reading materials. If you would be willing to moderate a local discussion, please write to

National Studies on Constitutional Amendments and Money in Politics

The two-year LWVUS program adopted in 2014 includes two studies, one on Constitutional Amendments (a new study) and one on Money in Politics (a review of the existing position).

A brief description of of each study appears below, along with links to resources that you can use right now to begin your personal reading.

Constitutional Amendment Study

During 2015, the LWVUS Constitutional Amendment Committee will conduct a study and member agreement process on amending our nation's Constitution. In addition to other topics, our League study will explore what constitutes an appropriate and well-crafted amendment.

Consensus questions and reading materials are located here. LWV South Bend will conduct consensus discussions this fall to meet a December 1 deadline.

Money In Politics

The Money in Politics Committee will conduct an update of the League's position on campaign finance for the purpose of addressing the lack of member understanding and agreement as to whether financing a political campaign is protected speech under the First Amendment. The campaign finance position will be updated through a study and consensus process to consider: (1) the rights of individuals and organizations, under the First Amendment, to express their political views through independent expenditures and the finance of election campaign activities; and (2) how those rights, if any, should be protected and reconciled with the interests set out in the current position.

Resources are here and LWV South Bend will hold consensus discussions in early 2016.

New Half-Price Student Membership

Join the League! LWV South Bend Area now offers a student membership rate of $25.00! A student is defined as an individual who is enrolled either full or part-time in an accredited institution.

Consider a gift student membership - you will be opening the door to lifetime of Making Democracy Work.

Did you know . . . The LWV South Bend Area

★ Visits area high schools to register voters - 1077 in 2012!
★ Registers new voters at local events - at least 40 events since 2008
★ Sponsors candidate debates and forums before every election
★ Organized and cosponsored B Green to Save Green, an environmental education program for low-income families
★ Hosts Lunch with the League, a monthly public event featuring a talk by local leaders, followed by discussion
★ Provides voter information at the community events such as the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day celebration and Michiana Monologues
★ Hosts Evening with the League, a monthly gathering of members and friends
★ Sponsors public forums on topics of community interest such as the Property Tax Cap Constitutional Amendment, Redistricting, and Economic Development in our area

Want to learn more? Contact us at today.

Meetings are held on the first Wednesday of each month at 5:30 pm at St Joseph County Public Library, Main Street, Downtown South Bend. Free Parking. Guests are welcome.