The Clemson Area
The Clemson Area
The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages the informed and active participation of citizens in government, and influences public policy through education and advocacy.
LWV of the Clemson Area is an organization fully committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in principle and in practice. There shall be no barriers to full participation in this organization on the basis of gender, gender identity, ethnicity, race, age, education, sexual orientation, culture, religion, political perspective, and/or any other characteristic that can be identified as recognizing or illustrating diversity.
We commit to making deliberate efforts to ensure LWV Clemson Area is a place where differences are welcomed, different perspectives are respectfully heard, and every individual feels a sense of belonging and inclusion. We commit to working actively to challenge and respond to bias, harassment, and discrimination.
NEWS RELEASE MARCH 5, 2020
Actions of the League of Women Voters
Making Democracy Work is the mission of the League of Women Voters of the Clemson Area (LWVCA). League members met at OLLI in Clemson February 29 to consider changes to its national and local priorities and policy positions for 2020-2022 that would further the organization's mission. These proposed changes will be voted on this spring at the National Convention of the League of Women Voters US (LWVUS) and the Annual Meeting of our Clemson Area League.
The first policy position recommended for adoption at the LWVUS convention is to "Support electoral systems at each level of government that encourage participation, are verifiable and auditable and enhance representation for all voters." This proposal supports electoral methods that encourage those with minority opinions to participate, including under-represented communities and that require the winner to receive the majority of votes for executive and single-seat offices.
Local League members also endorsed an addition to the Arms Control section of International Relations relating to cyberwar which will be considered at the National Convention. After the current phrase "the US government shall give the highest level of importance to arms control efforts that ..." the following be added:
.....provide international agreement on limits to the use of cyber weapons to attack critical infrastructure (including electrical grids, water supplies and other essential services).
Along with this addition, Clemson Area members agreed that the LWVUS Convention be asked to approve a study of cyber weapons and cyberwar, including artificial intelligence, to better educate League members and the public on this poorly understood reality and threat.
Other priorities approved for consideration at the National Convention include greater LWVUS action on environmental issues and universal health care.
All policy positions approved at the National Convention are automatically accepted as positions of state and local Leagues. State and local Leagues decide the extent to which they work on issues, with guidance from the National League.
Clemson Area members also recommended a policy relating to the size of the Pickens County Council for acceptance at its May Annual Meeting. It states that Council membership be increased to seven members, elected from the same single-member districts as School Board members. Having fewer ballot types results in an election that is easier to administer. Simplification of the election process should save election costs.
The League of Women Voters promotes political responsibility through informed and active participation in government. It does not support or oppose any political party or candidate. Its strength is in its diversity, welcoming all people regardless of gender, race or creed.
GENERAL MEETING MARCH 24 -- WILL BE RESCHEDULED
Ensuring the availability of healthy, affordable food is an essential component of a community's quality of life. While food security rate>>s have improved since the 2008 recession, food insecurity remains a concern among certain subpopulations and in some areas of the country.
To better understand the extent and character of food insecurity and hunger in Pickens County, SC, the research team conducted a mixed-method study of these issues in Summer 2019. The study was commissioned by the United Way of Pickens County as a follow-up to an earlier study conducted in 2011. This study aimed to:
1) Assess state of food insecurity in Pickens County in 2019 and the community assets available to address the issue; 2) Document, through maps and a transportation study, the extent of the needs and gaps in services; and 3) Recommend steps for harnessing community assets to address the needs individuals facing hunger and food insecurity.
The research team's presentation will focus on the initial study results, focusing on the survey results and a model for addressing the broaders systemic causes of hunger and food insecurity in the county and beyond.
Catherine Mobley is a Professor of Sociology at Clemson University. She has extensive experience in community-based research and program evaluation, addressing a variety of issues, including, STEM education, environmental sustainability, and hunger and food insecurity. She has been involved in several community organizations, including serving on the boards of the LWVCA, the United Way of Pickens County, and the Upstate Homeless Coalition.
Cassius Hossfeld is an MS degree candidate in the Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Criminal Justice at Clemson University. He holds a BA degree with Honors in Sociology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Hossfeld has experience with diverse qualitative and quantitative research methods, including surveys, in-depth interviews and focus groups. He will apply these skills to a broader study of food access, to be conducted in Summer 2020.
Michelle Eichinger is a PhD candidate in Planning, Design and Built Environment at Clemson University. She has over 15 years of experience in public health programs development and management; and policy analysis related to chronic disease prevention and health promotion, with a focus on equity, food security, and active living in the built environment.
Leslie Hossfeld is the Dean of the College of Behavioral, Social and Health Sciences at Clemson University. As a rural sociologist, she focuses on multi-disciplinary strategies and collaborative partnerships to understand and alleviate persistent poverty in the Southeast, particularly around local food systems development, food access and food insecurity. She works to link U.S. local food systems research and initiatives to nutrition, malnutrition (obesity), and health outcomes and health disparities to develop policy coherence linking health and agriculture policy.
The public is invited. See the calendar for more information.
VOTE411 -- THE ONLINE CANDIDATE FORUMS
Alice Flower (Anderson County), Kathy Bargeron (Oconee County) and Eleanor Hare (Pickens County) are collecting candidate information and entering it in the computer. Invitations to participate are being sent to candidates by email. Letters will be mailed to those who do not reply.
We need volunteers in two areas: (1) to phone candidates who do not reply and (2) to take Vote411 flyers and business cards to each council having an election.
This outreach, to the edges of our three counties, is a huge task, but it is a major benefit to voters. If we can reach all these elections, candidate participation in future candidate forums should increase. Contact any of the county co-ordinators if you can help.