Minnesota Feminists Speak Out!

The unofficial blog of Minnesota NOW


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Looking for a few good interns!

Are you a college student looking to fight the War on Women AND earn credit at the same time?  Then Minnesota NOW is looking for YOU!

Sisterhood not required: brothers and others are welcome, too!

Minnesota NOW Internship Job Description

Minnesota NOW offers volunteer, unpaid internship opportunities, both full and part time, throughout the year.

Prospective interns should be hard working, enthusiastic and flexible individuals who possess or seek a working knowledge of women’s issues and feminist organizing.  Interns should also be committed to continuing to struggle for equality and justice once they leave the internship program and return to their campuses and communities.

Interns will work in the following areas depending on interest and organizational need:

Government Relations/Public Policy: Characterized by lobbying, legislative research and writing, and political campaign work.  Work with legislators to pass feminist legislation in Minnesota.

Field Organizing: Get involved in the nuts and bolts of grassroots organizing for NOW’s broad range of priority issues.  Work on pickets, campaigns, conferences/summits, speaking tours and materials development.

Membership: Excellent opportunity in information science, using large membership database and meeting information needs of our members and leadership.  Work with state and chapter leadership to increase Minnesota NOW’s membership.

Fundraising:  If you’re interested in working in the nonprofit world, an internship with fundraising experience will provide you with highly marketable skills.  Learn the secrets of writing copy, sending direct mail appeals, and organizing special fundraising events.  Explore grant writing and corporate fundraising opportunities.

Communications: Research and write articles for the Minnesota NOW Times, assist in maintaining press clips, draft press releases and field press calls.  Desktop publishing experience may be provided.

Web:  Help maintain Minnesota NOW’s web site.  Research, write and edit stories about women’s issues, design graphics and build web pages.  Contribute to/organize Minnesota NOW’s Weblog.

Political Action Committee: Assist with Minnesota NOW/PAC organizing, including screening candidates, processing endorsement requests, and managing campaign finance board materials.

Projects and assignments in these areas vary based on the changing political and social climate in Minnesota and the nation.

Contact our office here: http://www.mnnow.org/contact_us.htm

LET’S GET TO WORK!

 

 


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Voting our principles

 

In our last blog post, we reminded voters in Minnesota’s 8th Congressional District that the candidate in the DFL Primary endorsed by the National NOW Political Action Committee was former state senator Tarryl Clark.  This announcement got a bit of attention on our Facebook page, where a few commenters noted (more than once) that they would be voting for the candidate endorsed by the DFL Party instead.  This post is not to pick a fight with someone else’s heartfelt opinion; rather, it is meant to remind our membership and the community just what an endorsement from NOW, either at the state or national level, really means.

Our chapter Vice President, though she is deeply involved in party politics,  likes to wear a button that reads “Women are not born Democrat, Republican, or yesterday.”  We at NOW feel strongly that women’s issues are non-partisan.  There should be an across-the-board consensus that violence against women is a bad thing, right?  RIGHT?!

Even highly charged social issues were once outside the purview of partisan politics.  The Republican Party was the first to put support for the Equal Rights Amendment in its platform, and former First Lady Betty Ford was an ardent supporter–while her husband was in office!

Minnesota NOW’s care values haven’t changed since Mrs. Ford wore this button.  They are:

  1. Constitutional equality (that means both a state and federal ERA!)
  2. Reproductive rights, including repeal of all laws restricting abortion access
  3. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender rights
  4. Eliminating racism
  5. Freedom from violence
  6. Economic justice, including opposition to punitive welfare reform

If today there is a perception that NOW is too closely aligned with one party over another, that fault can only lie with the parties themselves.  Our values have remained consistent–have theirs?

It’s also very important to remember is that while one party might appear to have the edge with NOW, said party members never get a free pass.  The aforementioned primary involved the seat in Congress once occupied by Democrat  Jim Oberstar, one of the architects of the horrific Hyde Amendment, which has banned federal funding for abortion services since 1977.  It’s argued that Hyde has done more to restrict abortion access in this country than any other piece of legislation (a piece by Dr. LeRoy Carhart for RH Reality Check on being a witness to the harmful effects of Hyde can be read here).  Did NOW ever endorse Rep. Oberstar?  What do YOU think?

And lest we forget, Minnesota NOW also endorses third-party candidates, like Green candidate Farheen Hakeem.  Any candidate from any party is invited to submit a completed candidate questionnaire to our Political Action Committee.  ANY candidate, ANY party.

But be warned: we’re very picky.  And while we may compromise on where we hold meetings and whose turn it is to bring donuts, we NEVER compromise our principles.

NEVER!


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Minnesota NOW celebrates Tarryl Clark!

Tarryl Clark poses with current and former officers of Minnesota NOW at our State Conference, April 2012.   

The Minnesota chapter of the National Organization for Women (Minnesota NOW) is thrilled that former President Bill Clinton has endorsed Tarryl Clark for the 8th Congressional district. “President Clinton sees in Tarryl Clark what we see,” says Minnesota NOW President Sarah Jane Johnston, “a proven leader who will be a true champion for women and families in Congress.”

Clark was endorsed by the National NOW Political Action Committee this spring.  As a special guest at our 2012 Minnesota State & Prairie States Regional Conference in April, Clark made clear that she will fight to stop the ongoing War on Women, including the onslaught of attacks against women’s right to reproductive health care.

Clark was also endorsed by the StarTribune, Minnesota’s largest newspaper, on August 4th.   “Of the three [candidates in the DFL primary], Clark alone has shown that she can operate effectively in today’s rough-and-tumble partisan lawmaking environment,” the editorial board wrote.

The incumbent, Chip Cravaack, is an unabashed supporter of the draconian Paul Ryan budget, which would devastate Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, and many other programs that are a lifeline for tens of millions of low- and middle-income women and their children.  “We can’t afford to play politics with women’s lives,” says Minnesota NOW Vice President Barbra Peterson.  “President Clinton knows that.  Tarryl Clark is in the best position to beat Chip Cravaack in November, and we need a fighter like her in Congress.”