Notes from Reproductive Rights Committee - Shore Area NOW
Wednesday, February 22, 2017

1.     Abbie Spector, Chapter President presented an overview and guidelines from the National Office.  A handout was provided.  Of immediate importance to note:
•    If you are not already a member of the National Organization, you must join and pay the membership fees to sit on a Committee/Task force.
•    This is a link to do that.  There are even student and sliding scale options.  I think I paid $35?  And our Change to “please affiliate with our Chapter number is #0275
•    In public appearances, only elected leadership and/or previously agreed upon representatives may speak for the Chapter and/or NOW in public.  Anyone may answer questions and say they are a member of NOW but are asked to voice their statement as “THEIR” opinion unless otherwise advised.  This is for legal purposes.  I dont know if legal is the right term.  I would say, it's NOW policy.  

2.  In accordance with the duties the committee is tasked with, our group identified 3 issues/concerns that we would like to focus on for the next 6 months.  We have one each:  immediate, short and long term objectives.

Publicity for NOW and our Local Chapter:  Immediate
•    We will link up with NJ Citizens Action group and sponsor an evening of their already successful weekly ACA Vigils at the offices of Congress.  Specifically, our group discussed attending Smith’s in Freehold.  However, these are also held in other locations.
•    Tricia will coordinate with Ann at NJ Citizen Action and pick a date that will work( I will look to pick a date about two weeks after the next chapter meeting which will allow us to discuss in the group at large, generate energy and support and yet quick enough that those wanting to translate energy into action will feel mobilized.)
•    Vicky will search out sign slogan ideas/photos to inspire those of us who are able to attend
•    Robin suggested and the group agrees, we will pick one date and if the turn out is good and the group at large agrees we will look to sponsor more moving forward

Candidate Nights:  Short Term
•    The Committee would like to identify, vote on and endorse candidates who represent Reproductive Justice and Health Rights.  Additionally, we would hope to identify female candidates and support their efforts to seek office.
•    Abbie will contact the League of Women voters as a starting point to see if there are candidate forums already scheduled that we could link up with
•    Mariel will check Emily’s list for potential candidates we should be paying attention to and vetting
•    Tricia will get Abbie the contact information for various local groups that may also help by sharing what they have been doing (Such as Action Together Monmouth County and their already sponsored phone/web based meet the candidates).

Planned Parenthood Funding:  Long Term
•    This weekend Mariel and Tricia are attending a Planned Parenthood training.  They will report back with names of who, in state, are the legislators that might be on the fence.  The group would like to focus our time and attention on those who we might influence.
•    Mariel shared the process of testifying on Planned Parenthoods behalf.  She will announce the dates and process via email.  This seems like an excellent way to be heard by all representatives in one space.
•    Planned Parenthood does not sanction counter protests and specifically asks that we not do them.  We will continue to partner with them and look for additional ways to meet the needs of our members to get out and show support while respecting PP needs (such as the already planned vigils above)
•    This issue will be an ongoing issue.  We will continue to frame our ideas and put them into action

3.  Meetings going forward.  
Will be held at the Eatontown library.  Abbie will try to pick a Monday or Wednesday and keep it consistent