In this virtual topic meeting, Ruth Bourquin, Senior & Managing Attorney for the ACLU Massachusetts, reviews anti-LGBTQIA+ activities happening today both in Massachusetts and across the country, and offers talking points, action tips, and other ways to push back against this growing tide. She is introduced by Newton City Councilor Holly Ryan, who also moderates Q & A from the audience. Ms. Bourquin’s presentation is posted below the video.
In honor of Mental Health Awareness Month which has been observed in the U.S. since 1949., Marcia Johnson, League president, had a conversation about this very important subject. Many in Newton have experienced mental health challenges, whether it be themselves personally, a family member, friend or co-worker. This is the first of a two-part program where the League will familiarize you with some of the resources and services available to community residents. Marcia Johnson, has a conversation with:
- Suzi Newman, NAMI Newton/Wellesley, President
- Meghan Kennedy, Director of Social Services, Newton’s Health & Human Services Department
The focus of the conversation was youth/students, families, and seniors and the availability of resources from City Hall and non-profits, such as NAMI.
With the COVID-era boost in Federal Extra Pandemic Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits ending at the beginning of March, we thought it important to learn more about Newton’s food pantries. In this episode of The League Presents… Marcia Johnson talked with Sindy Wayne, Board Vice President of the Newton Food Pantry and Taylor Lies, Board President of the Centre Street Food Pantry.
It was fascinating to learn about these two very complex and impressive organizations that bring food and personal items to many residents of Newton and several neighboring communities. The conversation focused on the following topics:
- How the food pantries have adjusted to three years of Covid and the economic challenges of 2022-23.
- The people that they serve and how people in need may gain access to the food pantries.
- Where the food comes from.
- How the organizations fund and manage the operations.
- The role of volunteers. If you would like to be a volunteer, please use these links:
Watch this episode
On Monday, March 6, 2023, the League of Women Voters of Newton hosted the four members of Newton’s state legislative delegation – Sen. Cynthia Creem, Rep. Kay Khan, Rep. Ruth Balser, and Rep. John Lawn – to discuss their roles and responsibilities in the state legislature. Each official made an opening statement, sharing about legislation they are supporting, followed by a Q & A session with the audience.
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In this episode of The League Presents, Marcia Johnson spoke with Josh Morse, who is Newton’s Public Building Commissioner. Given that the LWVN recently endorsed passage of the three override questions, our conversation is aimed at helping the community to better understand how the override funds, should voters approve the questions, be spent on our school buildings.
On February 15, the League of Women Voters of Brookline, Newton, Needham, Sharon-Stoughton, and Wellesley hosted a Q & A conversation with Congressman Jake Auchincloss, of the Massachusetts 4th District. After brief introductory remarks, Congressman Auchincloss answered a question from each of the sponsoring Leagues, followed by questions from the audience.
Members who attended the February 7th member meeting on the 2023 override proposal voted unanimously in favor of supporting the 3 ballot question package.
Members heard from Christine Dutt, co-chair of Vote Yes for Newton, about the history of Prop 2 ½, how overrides are used in other municipalities and have been used in Newton in the past, and what the current proposal offers Newton residents. Leaders of No Override Newton were also invited to present, but the group did not participate. The address for the No Override Newton website, which had launched earlier in the day, was shared with the group, and some Newton Taxpayer Association videos expressing the “vote no” position had been shared prior to the meeting.
Following the Vote Yes for Newton presentation, LWVN president, Marcia Johnson, shared slides containing information compiled by LWVN member Jane Harper that outlined how each provision of the override package aligns with LWVN positions in the areas of Land Use, Human Services, Environmental Quality, and Transportation.
Debbie Winnick, of the LWV of Cape Cod, facilitated a question and answer period before the question of whether LWVN should “support the passage of Newton’s 2023 override proposal” was put to a vote. Attendance at the meeting exceeded the requirements for a quorum, and all 26 members attending voted in favor.