Action Newsletter—30 March 2020

DEMOCRATIC EVENTS 1. SAD NEWSIt is with deep regret we advise that one of our Skagit County Democrats volunteers, Nikki Hamilton, was stricken by the COVID-19 virus and passed away Nikki was an active and enthusiastic member of our body and she will be sorely missed. Nikki’s sister, Janet, was interviewed by ABC News. You can Click Here to see the resulting article. It is well worth the read.2. NEWA message from Skagit County Democrats Chair Lynn Campbell “Dear Democrat friends,I, like you, grieve for our community as we are hit with COVID-19. We have lost a volunteer to the virus, and we all share in the grief of her loss. Our newsletter editor has included a newspaper article written from an interview with her sister. I have been in contact with her husband, Russ, who as you can imagine is suffering the loss of his wife, companion and friend. Nikki worked in our office on Wednesdays and she served on our essay committee. Nikki she was a force to be reckoned with and all who knew her never doubted her passion for the Democratic Party. Nikki had just returned from a visit with her kids in Texas. I feel heartened that she had that time with her family just prior to her illness. In accordance with Public Health’s recommendation and out of an abundance of caution (at that time) Skagit County Democrats closed the office on March 16. That does not mean we have stopped working. We have all been working remotely and continuing our work for you. While normal life isn’t in our game plan for the foreseeable future, we have been busy developing and implementing new technology in order to carry-on with business as usual. We have been holding our E-board meetings and committee meetings via tele video capabilities. We are currently using Zoom, and it has worked well. We continue to expand our efforts to reach all of you in our endeavors. Our Central Committee will be held by way of Zoom. Since our meetings are open to the public, please email us if you wish to attend so that we can send you a link. We currently have a technology team who are all generously donating their time and talent to meet the increasing needs of our organization. We are in need of any members who have technology experience/capability to assist our organization as we host Zoom meetings and transition to more on-line activities. Training will be provided. Please contact me at Staff@Skagitdemocrats.org if you are interested in helping out with this work. Good News: The turnout of Democratic voters for Presidential Primary had a substantial increase in the number of votes. Democrats had over 1.6 million votes cast in Washington State during this primary. In 2016 we had approximately 230k participation in state-wide caucuses. That is good news for our upcoming 2020 election! Although doorbelling cannot occur, efforts are underway for virtual phone banking. In addition, each candidate in Skagit County will be ramping up their efforts to reach voters through the use of technology. Skagit County Democrats will assist candidates by providing links to their events, as well as inviting them to speak at our April 11th virtual Central Committee meeting. (10:00am to noon). We will keep you posted on all upcoming events as they become available. IMPORTANT NOTE: Please stay healthy.
  • Drink lots of water
  • Talk with someone on the phone every day
  • Maintain social connections. Feel free to reach out to us
  • Laugh (humor heals)
  • Listen to music
  • Read a book
  • Exercise
  • Get plenty of rest.
We care about both the physical and mental health of all of you. We are here for you and support you. Warmly, Lynn Campbell, Chair” 3. The Skagit County Democrats Headquarters remains CLOSED until further notice Payments for membership or the Gala can be dropped through the mailbox in the door or sent to P.O. Box 761, Mount Vernon, WA 98273. Phone calls will continue to be monitored and returned. 4. NEWPlease join Representative Rick Larsen for a conference call this Tuesday, Mar 31, 5:30pm for an update on COVID-19 and Congress This conference call will focus on Democratic party members, PCO’s, activists, and leaders in Skagit County. We will host a similar call in each of the five counties of the 2nd Congressional District this week. You can join the conference call using this information to dial-in (please dial-in 5 minutes before the start of the call at 5:25 pm):
  • Dial-in number: 253-215-8782
  • Meeting ID: 198 781 479
In order to accommodate large groups and make sure everyone has a chance to participate, Rick will take questions live from Lynn Campbell, Chair of the Skagit County Democrats. Please send an email with your name and questions to Lynn at Campbelllynn87@gmail.com at least 3 hours before the start of the call, and we will get to as many questions as possible. If your question is not addressed live on the call, we will follow up after the call. We will also be recording the audio of the call to be shared after the call. We invite you to share any information from the call with your family, friends, and neighbors, as well as on social media. NOTE: This call was originally scheduled for Friday, Mar 27 but due to Rick’s need to return to the Capitol to vote on the economic relief package, it has been rescheduled. 5. State Convention Delegate Selection – DELEGATE CANDIDATES WANTED At this time, both our County Convention and In-Person Caucuses have been cancelled. The State Party is working on developing on-line capabilities for delegate selection to the State Convention (Jun 12 – 14). If you wish to be a delegate, please take the following steps:
  • Register on-line by Apr 24 at https://wademscaucus2020.azurewebsites.net/. (The website will be down from Mar 22 – Mar 26 for updates.)
  • If you already pre-registered for the caucuses you should receive an email asking you to update your registration
  • Precinct Committee Officer (PCO) Voting – PCOs will vote between Apr 22 and May 3
  • Delegates Notified – Selectees will be notified if they are a delegate for the State convention by May 5
  • Further resoures and information are available at https://www.waelectioncenter.com/
6. Warren G. Magnuson Awards Dinner, Saturday, May 9, 5:00pm, Washington State Convention Center, 705 Pike Street, Seattle Click Here for more information. Please note the date may change due to the on-going coronavirus crisis. 7. UPDATEDThe 2020 Skagit County Democrats Gala may be rescheduled or managed differently The Gala is currently scheduled for Saturday, Jun 6, Swinomish Casino and Lodge, 12885 Casino Drive, Anacortes. The Gala Committee continues to meet and is considering all options. We will advise further as soon as a plan is developed. 8. Census – You Count! Be Counted! With all the attention to the Coronavirus pandemic, we should not lose sight of the census. It is extremely important that we all get counted! Most of us can complete the census on-line with a computer or smartphone. Here is a link if you need more information or have had problems completing the census. Here is another link with information that includes how to recognize a real census worker (bottom of the page). 9. National 2020 Caucus/Primary and Debate Schedule
  • April 4 – Alaska, Hawaii and Louisiana primaries; Wyoming caucuses
  • April 7 – Wisconsin primary
  • April 28 – Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island primaries
  • May 2 – Kansas primary; Guam caucuses
  • May 5 – Indiana primary
  • May 12 – Nebraska and West Virginia primaries
  • May 19 – Kentucky and Oregon primaries
  • June 2 – District of Columbia, Montana, New Jersey, New Mexico and South Dakota primaries
  • June 6 – U.S. Virgin Islands caucuses
  • July 13-16 – 2020 Democratic National Convention, Milwaukee
  • August 24-27 – 2020 Republican National Convention, Charlotte, NC
  • September 29 – First presidential debate, South Bend, IN
  • October 7 – Vice presidential debate, Salt Lake City, UT
  • October 15 – Second presidential debate, Ann Arbor, MI
  • October 22 – Third presidential debate, Nashville, TN
  • November 3 – Presidential election
10. Teleconference Tips Since we are using teleconference options for meetings more frequently, here are some tips for participants
  • Take a bathroom break before the meeting starts
  • Familiarize yourself with meeting materials (agenda, minutes, etc.) in advance
  • Join the meeting on time
  • Let the meeting host run the meeting
  • Mute your microphone unless speaking
  • Use the “raise hand” feature for recognition from the meeting host
  • Say your name before speaking
  • Use the “chat” or “text” feature for side comments
  • Direct questions to a specific person instead of posing them to the group at large
  • Stay positive and be patient
11. NEWLinks of the Week The Link of the Week provides in-depth pieces the Editor has found to be relevant, insightful, and thorough on important issues of the day.
 
COMMUNITY EVENTS 1. Resources For Worker Assistance Our thanks to Janet McKinney who shared this list of resources from the Washington State Labor Council. Other resources can be found at https://www.wslc.org/covid-19/.
  • EDS Paid Family Medical Leave visit https://paidleave.wa.gov/
  • Unemployment Benefits – https://esd.wa.gov/, if denied contact Unemployment Law Project at http://unemploymentlawproject.org/ (Waiting a week has been waived for WA State)
  • Washington Apple Health Special Enrollment Period is now available through April 8th at https://www.wahealthplanfinder.org
  • Apply for Washington Apple Health Medicaid through https://www.hca.wa.gov/
  • Financial Assistance through Foundation for Working Families https://www.wslc.org/
  • Financial Help through Department of Financial Institutions https://dfi.wa.gov/
  • Small Business assistance at http://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/
  • Insurance question contact https://www.insurance.wa.gov/
  • Emergency Assistance Program through Economic Services Administration at https://www.dshs.wa.gov/ – This can cover rent including back rent, deposits for rent or utilities, home repairs, basic local telephone services, utilities and short term lodging such as motels
  • United Way Resources – dial 211
  • Governor Inslee has instituted statewide moratorium on evictions of residential tenants for the next 30 days. Law Enforcement will not enforce eviction orders based solely on non-payment of rent.
  • Federal Housing Finance Agency directed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to suspend foreclosures and eviction for at least 60 days.
2. Planned Parenthood picketing/rallying has been suspended A recent note from Mary Deaton includes. . . “It is most important to keep devoted PP supporters healthy and well. When the governor says it is okay to go out once again, we’ll get back to protecting a woman’s right to choose.” 3. NEW –  The Skagit Valley Tulip Festival is suspended Click Here for more information. 4. Alliance for Gun Responsibility‘s 8th Annual Luncheon, Monday, Jun 1, 12:00pm, The Westin Seattle, 1900 5th Avenue, Seattle Click Here to RSVP. This is a free event, but a donation will be requested during the program. Questions? – Contact Shelby at shelby@wagunresponsibility.org or 206-328-2969. “Safe and Sane Skagit will have a table at the luncheon and would love it if people could sign up here and list Diane Studley as their table captain.”
 
ANNOUNCEMENTS 1. Listen to We Do the Work, Tuesdays, 5:00pm, and Sundays, 5:30pm at KSVR, 91.7 FM or KSVU, 90.1 FM A weekly local worker radio program that features news, interviews, music, and comments, “We Do the Work” believes American workers are at the heart of our economy and culture, deserving dignity, respect, and a decent family wage. To hear our other shows, go to We Do The Work Archives. Questions about interviews? Email – ksvrwedothework@gmail.com.NEW – We Do The Work’s program for Tuesday, Mar 31, 5:00pm and Sunday, Apr 7, 5:30pm – Marcus Courtney, Founder of Washington Alliance of Technology Workers/TNG-CWA Local 37083 & Conor Casey, Labor Archivist for the Labor Archives of Washington Interview by Mike Dumovich: Mike continues his special segment of We Do The Work called ‘Learn Yourself” that explores labor history hoping listeners will learn more about the fight for justice by workers. This show has Marcus Courtney and Conor Casey talking about the history of organizing tech workers.We Do The Work Comment: Some funny definitions of politics are recited. 2. Listen to Speak Up! Speak Out! Radio Listen to Speak Up! Speak Out! – a half hour weekly radio show committed to community, peace, justice, and non-violence issues. The show airs on Community Radio stations (times subject to change) – KSVR 91.7 FM (Skagit Valley College), Wednesdays 5:00pm, rebroadcast Sundays 8:00pm; KSVU 90.1 FM, Hamilton, Sundays 8:00pm and Thursdays 8:00am; KMRE 102.3 FM, Bellingham, Sundays 11:00am and Wednesdays 7:30am. Our shows are available online. Stream or download a show at http://speakupspeakoutradio.org/ anytime. SUSO staff have been unable to access KSVR on the Skagit Valley College campus “Please encourage folk to look at our archives and listen to past shows. We’ll be back on the air as soon as we can.” The archive for past shows is available through the link above. 3. UPDATEDCoffee ‘n Cards – Going on-line Via ZOOM meeting, Coffee ‘n Cards will meet on Mondays from 10:00AM – 10:30am. The “At Home Edition” (takes on new meaning now!) will be published weekly. Add your name to the email list by contacting hostess Carol Sullivan at carolosully@yahoo.com. The email will contain the weekly meeting ID number and the usual action list. You can participate in the ZOOM meeting via phone or computer, and can choose to be viewed or not. Send your mailing/physical address if you’d like a supply of cards or stamps delivered to your door. While attention is focused on the national emergency we find ourselves coping with, there are people to thank and issues to support or oppose. Just as in legislative offices, our cards, phone calls and emails will be tallied weekly. Send Carol your total. 2020 tally: 996, Grand total: 9,229. To join the Zoom meeting, go to https://zoom.us/join, enter the “Meeting ID” contained in the email invitation, and then follow the prompts to join the meeting. There is no charge. Brew your own coffee! Stay Safe, Stay Home! 4. Anacortes Weekly Demonstrations Do you have a cause or a candidate that you are passionate about? If yes, join us at the “protest corner” in Anacortes, 12th Street and Commercial Avenue (the Safeway Corner) EVERY Sunday from 12:00pm – 1:00pm – wet or sunny, hot or cold, all year around. Bring your own signs or use one of our extras.