Minutes of the Steering Committee 12.5.17

Equal Rights Maine Steering Committee Minutes, December 5, 2017


Nancy Murdock, Sherry Streeter, Susan Snider, Robin Lincoln, Jean Fogelberg, Sally Stone, Leda Beth Gray, Lyn Mayewski

Networking & Contact Data Base (Susan & Robin)

Lyn sent out a letter to friends and got a good response with email addresses which Susan and Robin added to the Contact Data Base.

Contact supporters list is approximately 130+. Our goal is to have 200+ by mid-winter.

Facebook page has 181 “likes.” Jean will add a request on the Facebook page for people to sign up on our website.

Nancy will let Susan and Robin know how to access mail in the inbox on the website.

Susan asked to have members add comments to the Log.

Network Building (Posie, Sherry, Linda, Susan)

The committee met recently.

Sherry talked to someone on MDI who suggested Reel Pizza for a showing of Equal Means Equal. AAUW (Marie Saucier) might blend into a Reel Pizza showing. Sherry will make contact to set this up, probably mid-winter.

Our first Newsletter is now planned to go out January.

Jean and Nancy are working on the online version.

Sherry will work on a hard copy version.

Advocacy with Legislators (Sally, Linda, Leda Beth)

Collins (Robin)

King (Sherry, Nancy)

Pingree (Nancy, Sherry)

Poliquin (Susan)

Maine: Langley & Chapman

Candidates: Governor, Legislators, etc.

Pingree: Nancy met in Portland with Chellie Pingree’s constituent representative, Skeek Frazee, in an encouraging, informative exchange. (See Networking Log for detail) Skeek encouraged us to pressure our other three U.S. legislators to sponsor the current ERA bills, as Pingree has done. She also offered to help with contacts for a Portland area group of ERA advocates. We discussed a springtime gathering of key figures in advance of a larger public event in Portland. There is a Women’s Justice lecture series sponsored by USM Law, (Dean Danielle Conway is one of our new contacts), which we may find an interested party to an ERA lecture. There is a developing group of recent law school graduates interested in women’s legal issues. And then there is the USM Women’s Studies program. Portland is an exciting and vibrant advocacy area for ERMaine. More to come on that front..

Sherry reminded us that Marion Morris would be able to help with an event in Portland with connections through her daughter.

Collins (Robin)

Robin reported that friend and contact, attorney Betsy McCandless, has found that Collins feels that ERA bills have no chance in this Congress (not news) and she is preoccupied with the tax bill struggle.

We discussed the need to make contact with key Collins staff, to make our ERA work known, to lay the groundwork, undeterred by Collins’ political battles now.

Poliquin (Susan)

Sally suggested calling Poliquin’s office to thank him for standing up for women regarding sexual harassment in the Congressional workplace (co-sponsoring with Jackie Speier). Susan’s persistence with that office is working – there is a meeting with the Congressman planned.

King (Sherry, Nancy)

Sherry will call King’s office, again, regarding scheduling a meeting with him (probably after the Tax Bill is concluded). As with Collins, a first meeting with key staff is well worthwhile and could happen this winter. We need to get pressure coming from within staff and an awareness of ERA interest in the state.


Sally and Sherry are going to a candidates’ forum on Thursday in Orland. (Later report: our fearless members asked candidates about the ERA and heard calls of approval from the crowd!)

Calls to Action (Leda Beth)

Nothing right now.

Publicity (Robin, Lyn, Nancy)

Newsletter due to be issued in January.

Upcoming article: How would an ERA help women fight sexual harassment and assault.

Facebook & Website (Nancy, Sherry, Jean)

See above in earlier discussion.

Education and Research (Susan, Nancy, Leda Beth)

Nancy and Susan reported on the recent “Beyond Labels” group discussion. As our first PowerPoint presentation, we learned a lot and will be making improvements but, in general, felt the visual aids were helpful. Major lessons: keep it simpler, shorter and more personal. As an example: questions leading into detail about ‘economic advantages to an ERA’ can be handled more easily than by showing statistics – by asking why should equality be an economics issue?

We discussed how we can present facts, and also give stories (the emotional side) to show the unfairness of sex discrimination. Jean is looking into finding more stories and how an ERA would affect these situations. Sally met a woman from Families First who might be able to connect us to some stories.

Next meeting:

Normally the first Tuesday of the month, but January’s meeting will be on:

Jan. 9 – 10:00-12:00 – Howard Room (Lyn reserved the room)

February will move back to the 1st Tuesday:

Feb. 6 – 10:00-12:00 – Howard Room (Lyn reserved the room)

Thanks to Lyn Mayewski for these Minutes!

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