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.
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Lunch with the League - November 13, 2015 at noon.

Dr. Ron Barker will be speaking about our environment with his talk, "Climate Change - Is It Really a Threat, and if so, What Should We Do?" A second speaker, Dr. Phil Sakimoto, from Notre Dame University, may be joining us as well. Dr. Barker was an optometrist for 38 years, retiring in 2012. When he retired he was invited to certify as a presenter for the Climate Reality Project, a global effort headed by Al Gore to disseminate accurate and up-to-date information about our climate.

With growing scientific evidence of global changes, Dr. Barker believes there needs to be a greater public appreciation of the scientific knowledge now available. He states he gives talks to reduce misunderstanding of the issue and build public support for appropriate responses.

South Bend Chocolate Cafe - 122 S. Michigan Street, South Bend, IN

Speaker begins at noon. Come as early as 11:30 AM to purchase lunch.

This event is free and open to the public.

Positions Studies!

Positions Studies. Our positions studies chairs are preparing to moderate our upcoming discussions, and I hope that you will take the opportunity to participate in these meetings. Our League Positions (local, State and National) form the basis of all League advocacy work and their developmen -- from the local level -- is what makes us a true grassroots organization.

What do you need to do? Simply read the materials that are provided (see below), familiarize yourself with the concurrence or consensus questions, and come to the meetings for discussion.

All of the materials are available online. Start here:

Please participate -- it's what makes the League your League! RSVP today to

November 18 at 5:30 pm Constitutional Amendment Study Meeting

Dickinson Room, Main Library, 304 S. Main, South Bend. Moderated by Robin Forsythe.
December 3 at 5:30 pm - Indiana Education Question Consensus Meeting
Dickinson Room, Main Library, 304 S. Main, South Bend. Moderated by Anne Montgomery and Linda Wolfson.
January 11 at 5:30pm - Money in Politics Study Meeting
Dickinson Room, Main Library, 304 S. Main, South Bend. Moderated by Amanda Ceravolo.

Holiday Gathering

Please join us for a casual dinner December 9 at 6:00 p.m. at La Esperanza, 1636 N. Ironwood.

Our holiday charity will be El Campito Day Care. Optional donations will be accepted that evening. Their Mission is: "Ensuring that every child in St. Joseph County has the opportunity to receive a high quality early childhood education."

A list of needs will be available closer to the event.

RSVP please to

Redistricting Reform - Time to Take Back Elections

In 2014, 44 out of 100 candidates for the Indiana House and 10 of 25 candidates for the Indiana Senate had no opponents.

Why? Because the General Assembly draws the district maps every 10 years after the federal census and legislatures draw maps for political advantage -- creating unfair electoral advantage for the majority party. The result? No competition and dismal voter turnout.

It's time to fix this sick system and put elections back in the hand of the voters.

The Indiana General Assembly has created a Special Study Committee on Redistricting that will work until December 2016 to create a reform recommendation for the legislature. We have a real opportunity to effect redistricting reform in our State but we must act now to educate and advocate for an independent redistricting process.

Join the Indiana Coalition for Independent Redistricting email alerts by sending an email to

More resources on the Redistricting Reform Page

Below you will find a link to the Special Committee's webpage and other to LWV resources.

Redistricting resources from LWVUS

Volunteers Needed!

Youth Voter Registration will gear up after the first of the year and additional volunteers are always needed. Both classroom presenters and support team members are needed. Training will be provided. Volunteers are notified of scheduled presentations and can sign up for those that work with their schedules. Please consider participating in this fun and rewarding program. For more information or to volunteer, please contact either of the co-chairs:

Susan Fischbach ( - 574-273-3866 Nancy Johnson ( - 574-273-5071

Citizen's Guide to Representative Government -- If you have an eye and passion for detail, your help is needed as we get ready to update the Citizen's Guide after the 2015 Election. With each update, we review all information in the Guide to ensure accuracy. Our Guide has the reputation of being the most comprehensive and accurate source of government information and contact information for elected officials. Help is needed for this important work!

Little Taste of Peace

Mark your calendars for the evening of January 16. As always, the League is a co-sponsor and it would be great to have many League members attend.

Details available soon!

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.