Making Democracy Work

Previous Positions Studies

2015 LWV Indiana Concurrence (Education)

Concurrence Meeting: December 3, 2015 in the evening
Please check back for time and location.

At this meeting, LWV South Bend will participate in the 2015 portion of the LWV Indiana Education Study by discussing whether it will concur with this 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.

In 2016, there will be a consensus study, with reporting at the start of 2017.

Visit http://www.lwvin.org for suggested reading materials.

LWVUS Constitututional Amendment Study - 2015

Consensus Meeting: November 18 in the evening
Please check back for time and location.
The deadline for reporting our local results is December 1.

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.

Resources and consensus questions are here.

LWVUS Money in Politics Review - 2016

Consensus Meeting will be held in January, with local report due by February 1. Please check back for time and location.

This study will 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.

The purpose of the update of the League's position on campaign finance is to address 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 and consensus questions are here

Agriculture Study - 2013

Consensus Questions with Key to Articles that Pertain to Each Question

What We Are Doing

Here in South Bend, we will participate by 1) studying the articles that have been gathered by the national Agriculture Update Committee, and then 2) participating in a series of four meetings at which we will discuss the issues and work toward the building of consensus on a series of questions developed by the national committee. For each question, those attending the meeting will determine a "Yes" or "No" response. If there is no consensus, that will be our response. Once the meetings are complete, we will submit our responses and a national position will be developed.

Study Materials

You will find the Consensus Questions above. The national committee has posted about 2/3 of the Study Articles, and we have posted PDFs on this site. You will find links to the article PDFs in the section below.

You can visit the national site for some additional materials and may also want to consider joining the Forum dedicated to the study. You will need to log in to the national site and subscribe to the forum.

National Ag Update Page

Agriculture Update Forum

More Info - What's it About

The Agricultural Update is organized into five subject areas:

  • Economic Health takes its principal focus the Farm Bill and other fiscal authorizing statutes in support of agriculture. Where should governmental fiscal support for agriculture be directed? What changes should government make regarding direct payment programs to farm operators? Should the government revise current regulations to enhance competitive markets or focus on promoting alternative marketing systems?

  • Animal Management is all about the approaches to animal management that the government should achieve, with special attention to animal waste management.

  • Research & Development (R&D) includes attention to the various approaches to R&D the government should fund: basic research; independent research; assessment of the impact of new technologies; research that advances diversified and sustainable agricultural systems; the development of new practices and technologies to promote conservation for all types of farms, among others.

  • Food Safety considers several approaches to food safety that the government may take, including the timing and its involvement in the development and implementation of new technologies; the requirements on the transparent disclosure of safety assessments; promotion of crop management practices that decrease dependency on added chemicals; limit use of antibiotics in animal management; conduct risk assessments of exposures from foods on human health and the environment.

  • Food Labeling centers on outcomes to be achieved through marketing and ingredient claims on food labels, and, for foods developed through new technologies, what generalized information relating to how products or components are developed be presented on food labels

Consensus Meeting Schedule

All meetings 5:30-7:30pm
St. Joseph County Public Library (room noted below)
304 S. Main Street - South Bend

February 19 - Food Safety and Labeling - Elizabeth Bennion, Facilitator (Dickinson Room)

March 19 - Animal Managment - Amanda Ceravolo, Facilitator (Dickinson Room)

April 2 - Economics of Agriculture - John Hagen, Facilitator (Pokagon Room)

April 9 - Research and Development - Lisa Plencner, Facilitator (Dickinson Room)

Study Articles

For convenience,we have posted PDFs of the study articles published at the National site. The headings are meant to be helpful and you may find some readings apply to more than one topic.

You can also access the articles and other materials at the Agriculture Update page at the national site.

G1 - Agriculture Update Acronyms

G2 - Agriculture Update Glossary - List of Items Provided by Committee

Economic Health of Agricultural Sector

A0 - Overview of Key Agencies Supporting and Regulating Food and Agriculture

A1 - United States Department of Agriculture

A8 - Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)

A9 - Antitrust Enforcement Agencies and Legislation

F1 - Overview of Agricultural Subsidy

F2 - Overview of Crop Insurance

A3 - Environmental Protection Agency - EPA

Research and Development

T0 - Introduction to Agriculture Technology

T1 - Overview of Farm Management

T2 - Overview of Plant Breeding, Seed Industry, and Biodiversity

T3 - Genetic Engineering and Genetically Modified Organisms in the Food System

T4 - Overview of Pesticide Management

T5 - Overview of Soil Management

T6 - Overview of Water Management

T8 - Overview of Nanotechnology and Other Technology

Animal Management

T7 Overview of Animal Management

Food Labeling and Food Safety
LWVSBA will address these separate topics in one consensus meeting.

A5 - Food Labeling - FDA and USDA

A2 - USDA's Role in American Nutrition

A4 - Food and Drug Administration - FDA

A6 - Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and National Institutes of Health

A7 - Interaction of Federal Agencies with Food Safety Missions