Secular Coalition for Oregon Monthly Conference Call

Location

Tuesday, September 11, 2012 - 16:00 - 16:30
Call In Details: 
Phone Number: 530-881-1400 Participant Code: 978895

Secular Coalition for America Oregon Chapter

Initial Organizing Conference Call Agenda

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

Tuesday, September 11th at 4:00 pm ET/ 1:00 pm PT

 

 

Welcome message

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

Explanation of conference call style and recording

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

Agenda available at secular.org state page.

Thank you for joining us for this historic event. The inaugural Secular Coalition for Oregon 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

Capital city is Salem

Governor

John Kitzhaber, Democrat elected in 2010

Was governor of Oregon from 1995 to 2003

Oregon governors are restricted to 8 years in office during any 12 year period

Oregon Legislative Assembly

Currently adjourned

2012 session ran February 1st through March 6th

Oregon State Senate has 30 members which serve 4 year terms, Democratically controlled with 16 Democrats and 14 Republicans

Oregon House of Representatives has 60 members who serve 2 year terms, Split control with 30 Democrats and 30 Republicans

14 Senate seats and all 60 House seats up for election in November 2012.

Church/State Violations

A few example of previous or current laws, general practice, or religiously-inspired legislation seen in Oregon that fall within the Secular Coalition for America's scope as an organization are:

OR HB 3609 - Would put the personal religious practices of an individual above any neutral state or local laws, including civil rights laws, if the person asserted that the law infringed on his or her religious beliefs.

Until 2011, Oregon had very strong "faith healing" protection, which resulted in several infant deaths and trials.

National issues sweeping the states

Reframing discrimination as "religious freedom" or "religious liberty"

Similar authorization of discrimination, this time by medical professionals with "Rights of Conscience" bills

Does anyone know any legislation or regulation in Oregon we should be watching?

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 Oregon 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

Oregon Lobbying Rules:

Lobbying Registration Information: Registration is required when lobbying activity exceeds one of the following thresholds:

1. You have engaged in lobbying activities for 24 hours in one calendar quarter.

2. You have spent $100 on lobbying activities in one calendar quarter.

Cost: Free (must register every other year)

Online Link: http://licenseinfo.oregon.gov/index.cfm?fuseaction=license_seng&link_item_id=14817

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 Kelly@secular.org.

Database

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

SCA's Support for the Chapters

Conference Calls

Initial organizing calls

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

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

The Oregon Legislature offers bill searching http://gov.oregonlive.com/bill/

CQ Statetrack

Full bill text and details

Committee hearings calendar

Customizable reports

Automatic web publishing

Website

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

Conference Call dates, time, numbers

Call replays and Agendas

Sign up to receive alerts

OR.secular.org subdomain

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

Technical set-up work still needs to be done, hope to have up soon

Use of our logo and name Secular Coalition for Oregon

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

What the SCA is doing until the next call:

Coordinating the lobbying needs of Oregon with best practices in organizational development and lobbying to create the best structure for Oregon

Identifying leadership

What you can do:

Contact us if interested in leadership

Sign up on our website to receive info and updates

Like the facebook page

Check out your state chapters page for updates

Spread the word about the next conference call!

Next Conference Call Date and Time

Tuesday, October 9th at 4pm ET/ 1pm PT

Second Tuesday of the Month

same call in number and code

My contact information

Kelly Damerow

Research and Advocacy Manager, Secular Coalition for America

Email: kelly@secular.org

Phone: 202-299-1091 ext. 204

Thank You!

 

 

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