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To arrange a media interview with Ellie Smeal or other spokespersons at Feminist Majority Foundation, contact the FMF media department at 703-522-2214.


Date: June-01-96
Contact: Susie Gilligan
Phone: (213) 651-0495


Student Mobilization to Register and Alert Voters

WHAT: Press Conference

WHEN: Wednesday, June 5, 1996 at 10:00am

WHERE: Los Angeles: NCJW Auditorium
543 North Fairfax

WHO: Freedom Summer 96 Student Volunteers, Eleanor Smeal, President, Feminist Majority

Following in the historic footsteps of their parents generation, college students from more than 54 campuses nationwide and in California arrived June 1, 1996 for Freedom Summer 96 -- a massive grassroots voter education and registration campaign to defeat the deceptive California "Civil Rights" Initiative (CCRI).

This first wave of students will be followed July 1 by a second wave and August 15 by a third. The press conference follows a five-day intensive training of the students, before deployment statewide.

Editors Note: Freedom Summer 96 is a joint project of the Feminist Majority and the NO on CCRI Campaign. Interviews with Ms. Smeal and Freedom Summer 96 organizers and participants are available upon request.

24-year old Colgate graduate and Freedom Summer 96 Campaign Coordinator Justine Andronicci explained "The students will spend the summer alerting voters -- especially women -- to CCRIs sneak attack on Californias equal rights amendment. We intend to expose the deceipt of the California "Civil Rights" Initiative: when California voters learn its not about civil rights, but destroys sex discrimination laws and affirmative action programs for women and people of color, theyll vote against it."

"We are thrilled so many young women have decided to commit their summers to the fight to save womens rights and civil rights," said Eleanor Smeal, president of the Feminist Majority. "Women will not be cut out of Californias constitution or the debate over affirmative action."

With over seven hundred college students signed-up to participate throughout the summer, Freedom Summer 96 is the largest young feminist mobilization for womens rights in the history of the United States. Students will be trained in everything from grass roots organizing to voter registration to campaign basics to leadership techniques. Following the five-day training, student teams will be deployed in high priority areas throughout the state. Students will be joined throughout the training by 1964 Mississippi Freedom Summer participants.