Secular Coalition for Virginia Monthly Conference Call

Location

Tuesday, September 4, 2012 - 13:00 - 13:30
Call In Details: 
Phone Number: 530-881-1400 Participant Code: 978895

Secular Coalition for America Virginia Chapter 

Conference Call Agenda

Call-in number: (530) 881-1400      Participant Access Code: 978895

Tuesday, September 4th at 1:00 pm ET 

 

 

Welcome message

Who is here and not here that needs to be here?

Agenda available at secular.org state page

Explanation of conference call style and recording

No one is required to speak up, but there will be opportunities to do so.

Thank you for joining us for the Secular Coalition for Virginia  monthly conference call!

Despite the fact that there are tens of millions of nontheistic Americans, we remain one of the most marginalized groups in the country. 

The Secular Coalition for America is the only 501(c)(4) representing secular and nontheistic Americans.

The Secular Coalition for America is working to make sure that we are heard on Capitol Hill. We fight in Washington DC against religious privileging on a federal level, yet some of the most egregious violations of separation of church and state are being promoted and passed at a state level.

The Secular Coalition for America is forming state chapters across the country.

Our chapters will bring together secular Americans in each state to lobby on secular issues.

State Government

Governor

Bob McDonnell

Republican elected in 2009, assumed office January 2010

Next election is November 2013

Bob McDonnell cannot run again in 2013 because the commonwealth's constitution prohibits governors from serving back-to-back terms

Virginia General Assembly

Out of session until January 2013

Virginia Seat in the U.S. Senate

Voting takes place on November 6

Current U.S. Senator from Virginia Jim Webb is retiring

Tim Kaine, Democrat, governor of Virginia before Bob McDonnell from 2006 to 2010

George Allen, Republican, governor of Virginia 1994 to 1998, Senator 2001-2007

Polling has them neck-and-neck

Overview of the State Chapter Model

A Secular Coalition for America state chapter is unlike any other nontheistic state organization-it brings together interested organization and individuals for the exclusive purpose of lobbying.

Relationship to the SCA

Chapters are part of the SCA

Don't need to file any tax documentation

Covered under our C4 tax exemption

Have C4 Lobbying privileges to educate and lobby on ballot initiatives, legislation, regulations, meet with policymakers, etc.

Cannot "electioneer" - endorse or speak out against specific candidates

Same Mission- to increase the visibility of and respect for nontheistic viewpoints in the United States, and to protect and strengthen the secular character of our government as the best guarantee of freedom for all.

Similar Purpose - accomplish its mission through cooperation between local groups and coordinated state lobbying activities.

Chapters are representatives of the SCA

As lobbyists we must be the diplomats of the secular movement

Nonpartisan, respectful, diplomatic

We believe secular values are American values

Fundraising

Fundraising challenges prevent chapter growth

SCA will do all the fundraising and provide all resources the chapter needs

Donations will go to the SCA for the benefit of the state chapters

Official Chapter Recognition

Once your state chapter is organized, the executive committee and a representative of the SCA will sign a memo of understanding officially recognizing the Secular Coalition for Virginia and giving the group access to our resources.

Membership/Leadership

Executive Committee

No set number of members or roles

Flexible to availability and strengths of individuals who want to get involved

Examples of Helpful Skills: leadership skills, familiarity with local groups, monitor legislation, conduct lobbying visits, mobilize grassroots, IT or website knowledge, social networking familiarity, comfortable speaking with press

Volunteer List

Those who do not wish to be on the Executive Committee, but still want to play an active role and help out once there is work to be done, please email me [email protected].

Database

Sign up to receive action alerts to be part of a grassroots campaign when particular issues arise. Sign up online here.

Secular Coalition for America's Support for the Chapters

Conference Calls

Initial organizing calls

Focus on setting up the structure, identifying leadership, discussing how the legislature in Virginia operates and the best ways to meet the needs of the Secular Coalition for Virginia

After Official recognition

Future monthly calls will become a way to educate and inform: track legislation, coordinate lobbying efforts and coordinate secular organizations.

Agendas available online

Call replays available online

Bill Tracking

Virginia has bill tracking but limits users to tracking 5 bills (registration required). Tracking any more than 5 bills requires a fee ($600).

http://www.virginia.gov/liab/cgi-bin/liab_signup.cgi

 CQ Statetrack

Full bill text and details

Committee hearings calendar

Customizable reports

Automatic web publishing

Website

Temporarily: Secular.org>States>Your State>Virginia

Conference Call dates, time, numbers

Call replays and Agendas

Sign up to receive alerts

VA.secular.org subdomain

Uses our template, but you will be able to update information

Technical set-up work is happening now!

Use of our logo and name Secular Coalition for Virginia

Email Address for Chair/Co-Chairs

Executive Committee Chair's name at secular.org

Gmail Group Mailing List

For leadership to discuss which issues they should address and to coordinate action

Facebook Page

Set up for each state

Will add leadership as admins

Can schedule events

Future Resources

Promotional resources- brochures, stickers, buttons, handouts

Informational resources - Research, fact sheets and policy papers

Trainings and Guides - media and lobby trainings and guides

National Resources

Powerpoints -available at secular.org/resources

National Secular Calendar - secular.org homepage

National Secular Update Weekly Conference Call

Thursdays at Noon 559-726-1300 Code 199568

Issues/Events

Any issues or events anyone would like to mention?

New Business

Executive Committee

We are currently working on getting all the resources in place

Interested Individuals

In anyone else has any interest in leadership please email me, [email protected]

Volunteers List

Those who do not wish to be on the Executive Committee, but still want to play an active role and help out once there is work to be done, please email me [email protected].

What the SCA is doing until the next call:

Building the website

Researching technologies to assist in chapter coordination

Identifying leadership and putting Executive Committee members in contact with each other

What you can do:

Email [email protected] if interested in leadership or volunteering

Sign up on our website to receive info and updates

Like the Facebook page

Check out Virginia's state chapters page for updates

Spread the word about the next conference call!

Next Conference Call Date and Time

October 2nd at 1pm

First Tuesday of the month

Same call in number and code

My contact information

Kelly Damerow

Research and Advocacy Manager, Secular Coalition for America

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 202-299-1091 ext. 204

Thank You!

 

 

 

 

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