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Feminist Majority Foundation/

Ms. Magazine

Summer 2006 West Coast Interns

 

Conference

CA Labor Federation Biennial Conference- Day 1

 

The California Labor Federation held its Biennial Conference at the end of July, where attending unions and members were to vote on endorsements of propositions and candidates for the upcoming November elections.  FMF board member and prominent labor leader Dolores Huerta asked FMF interns to join her in lobbying the delegates to recommend a “No vote” on Proposition 85 - a anti-abortion parental notification initiative set to appear on the California ballot in November.  We passed out flyers with information about the dangers of the proposition, and spoke to union members about our cause.  The executive council had voted to make no recommendation on Prop 85 saying the issue was unrelated to labor and too controversial.  As the delegation prepared to vote on the recommendation, many delegates approached the microphones, creating long lines of people down the isles of the conference room.  Every single delegate that spoke advocated overturning the Council’s “No Recommendation” and taking an official stance on the proposition. 

 

Many women and men participated in the discussion, speaking of their own personal experiences, those of their students and young daughters.  They insisted parental notification was, in fact, a labor issue; that young women represent a large constituency of labor unions.  Many echoed the idea that Proposition 85 was a wedge issue, attempting to divide and conquer progressive solidarity.  The deliberations were cut short because it was obvious to the Council that there was a clear challenge to their initial stance.  The “No recommendation” was overturned and the committee officially endorsed a “Vote no” on Prop 85 recommendation instead.

As Feminist Majority Foundation interns proudly wearing our feminist tee-shirts, we were very visible at the conference.  People surrounded us after the vote asking about our cause and  where they too could purchase feminist merchandise.  Several women approached, teary-eyed, to thank us for being at the conference and congratulating us on “our” victory.  We were told that our presence put a face on the cause, and allowed the voters/union members to visualize the issue.  It was a truly gratifying experience.

Interns with Delores Huerta- Day 2

 

 

HER Clinic Visit

HER Clinic is a women’s health facility and abortion clinic in downtown Los Angeles.  Visiting HER Clinic was one of the most integral and eye-opening experiences during the summer internship. Because pushing for abortion rights and freedom for women’s health choices are a forefront in feminist agendas, getting an inside look at a facility that works for this purpose was inspiring. Speaking with the coordinator of HER clinic gave us great insight into what the job entails and the conflicts that opposing views may bring.  I think I speak for all the interns when I say that the visit deepened our appreciation of the tireless work that women (and men) do for other women.

-Diana Tsuchida

 

March for Farm Workers

A few summer interns had the opportunity to support farm workers in a march for fair wages organized by Feminist Majority Foundation board member Dolores Huerta. Despite the long drive and the desert heat, the interns joined hundreds of laborers and supporters in Lamont, CA to speak out against the unfair wages being paid to the local farmers. The protestors marched 3 miles around the community, while protesting in Spanish: Si, se puede! Que queremos? Sueldos justos! Cuando? Ahora! The march attracted much of the local media due to their large presence, and fellow Feminist Majority Foundation intern Brielle Schaeffer was interviewed by Univision.

-Kira Levy

 

Campus Visits

UCLA

The Promenade

Santa Monica College

Santa Monica College

 

Out of the Office

At the Tonight Show with Jay Leno

Lunchtime in LA!