TPP – Trans Pacific Partnership and What It Means To You
Speakers: Roya Pelican and Cilia Raughley
If you are new to the TPP concept, you missed an opportunity to learn about a very important trade agreement that is being worked without the general populations knowledge. TPP creates a backdoor to give corporations more of what they want – profits. And less to the American population – lower wages, lower food standards, fewer rights, fewer environmental regulations. Now is the time to learn all you can about TPP and stand against this threat to the American population. Here’s what you can do now.
How The Use of Antibiotics On Factory Farms is Hurting You
Speaker: Hannah Adams, Representative from Food & Water Watch.
Right now, factory farms use antibiotics to help animals grow at faster rates and to compensate for filthy living conditions. This abuse of life-saving drugs has led to the explosion of antibiotic resistant bacteria that have made their way into our food, directly compromising our health. Just one strand of this bacterium, MRSA, cased 19,000 deaths last year alone. Learn more at www.foodandwaterwatch.org
What an October! If you missed our meeting this month, you missed out on two great speakers who provided us with a lot of interesting content.
Why Courts Matter
Peg Perl, Staff Counsel to Colorado Ethics Watch
Laura Reinsch, Political and Organizing Director of NARAL Pro-Choice Colorado
The federal courts have a great effect on public policy and a direct impact on people’s lives. Federal judges receive lifetime appointments, yet the system for appointing federal judges, and the vacancy crisis in the federal courts, do not get the attention they deserve in Colorado. Federal courts around the country are gripped by a vacancy crisis which has left important seats open, both because President Obama has in many cases failed to nominate a replacement judge and because the judges he does select are subject to delay and filibuster during the Senate confirmation process. Women, people of color and LGBT citizens are still vastly underrepresented in the ranks of Federal judges, but the President’s nominations have been the most diverse in history.
The Problem With Private Prisons
Christie Donner, Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition
Did you know there is no correlation between crime and those incarcerated?
Did you know 25 percent of all persons released from prisons are immediately homeless because they can’t get jobs in our community, and often can’t return home to family because of the neighborhoods they live in?
Did you know education continually is defunded to allow more money into the for profit prison system?
Considering most people in prison today are in there because of mental disease, drugs or immigration problems, to say our prison system needs a complete overhaul is an understatement.
To learn even more, visit the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition.
Speaker: Andrew Romanoff
Title: A Blueprint for The Future
Andrew Romanoff is running for a seat in the US House of Representatives in the 6th Congressional District, and joined us in September for a lively discussion about everything relevant to today’s Colorado women. Andrew won election to four terms in the Colorado House of Representatives, including two terms as Speaker of the House. He earned national acclaim as one of the most effective legislative leaders in America.
Andrew led the fight to pass an Economic Recovery Plan and steer Colorado out of a deep recession. He brought Democrats and Republicans together to repair our state’s crumbling schools. He authored laws to protect the victims of domestic violence, provide treatment for mental illness, expand the supply of affordable housing, and shield children and seniors from neglect and abuse.
More than 50 state and national organizations have recognized Andrew’s leadership. The Council of State Governments, the National Conference of State Legislatures, and the State Legislative Leaders Foundation present the William Bulger Award to the “legislative leader who has worked to preserve and build public trust in the institution of the state legislature and whose career embodies the highest principles of leadership — integrity, compassion, vision and courage.” In 2006, Andrew became the award’s youngest recipient. Two years later, Governing Magazine named him as a “Public Official of the Year.”
Progressive Women of Colorado also hosted two charity drives during our September meeting.
We brought pet food - from Eileen at Colorado Pet Pantry: “Thanks SO Much for the food drive. Progressive Women donated over 200 pounds of food plus pet supplies! That’s awesome!”.
And we also worked with FreeTheGirls.org with their donate a bra campaign. from Sara with Free the Girls Organization: “How wonderful the women of PWC are! You donated 44 bras. You rock! Thank you so much.”
Speaker:Tara Trujillo, Outreach and Strategy Director for Mark Udall
Tara Trujillo conducted a 1 hour investigative Round Table session to compile your opinions on what you consider the most important issues for Senator Udall to move forward with in the coming year. We covered the topics of Education, Healthcare, Outdoors, Quality of Life and more.
Speaker: Emily Lafferrandre from Prax(us)
Emily Lafferrandre from Prax(us) who will be speaking about first hand accounts of being on the front lines of human trafficking. Prax(us) is dedicated to ending human trafficking and addresses the root causes of exploitation by creating systemic change. For more information http://www.praxus.org
Speaker: Denise Maes
Privacy, The Patriot Act, and Government Drones.
Progressive Women welcomed Denise Maes, the policy Director for the ACLU. She is an expert on the Patriot Act and has worked for the White House. She is currently working on three bills in the legislature; one on social networking privacy, one on drone, and one on the intersection of personal privacy and law enforcement.
Throughout our meeting, we held a lively discussing on privacy and how its impacting our lives today – very timely with the recent scandal between the NSA and whistleblower Edward Snowden. We discussed everything from drone usage and why it can affect your security right in your own community, DNA storage and the ethics of taking and storing it indefinitely in all kinds of situations, and the impact the Patriot Act is having on our freedoms – and ultimately what we can do to reverse direction of some of these latest tactics.
Above all contact your congressional leaders and let them know your opionions.
Also visit sites like StopSpyDrones.com to learn more.
Speaker: John Fielder
PWC welcomed John Fielder, whose photography and environmental work is legendary.
John Fielder has worked tirelessly to promote the protection of Colorado’s ranches, open spaces, and wildlands during his 30-year career as a nature photographer. His photography has influenced people and legislation, earning him recognition including the Sierra Club’s Ansel Adams Award in 1993 and, in 2011, the Aldo Leopold Foundation’s first Achievement Award given to an individual. Over 40 books have been published depicting his Colorado photography. He lives in Summit County, Colorado, and operates a fine art gallery, John Fielder’s Colorado, in Denver’s Art District on Santa Fe. He teaches photography workshops to adults and children. Information about John and his work can be found at johnfielder.com.
Women In Media with Gloria Neal
Gloria Neal, Talk Show Host from 760AM, spoke about The Power of Women in Media and Politics. Gloria is a no nonsense progressive woman of the air waves, and spoke about how she entered this career and how the game is being played in today’s environment.
Climate Change – Facts & Solutions
Paddy McClelland provided us with an informative presentation on global warming and how it affects us all. As a representative for the Climate Project, an organization run by former Vice President Al Gore, she shared with us facts and figures on where we stand today, and gave us talking points on how to deal with family and friends that don’t believe. Did you know:
- If you are 28 or under, you’ve never lived through a colder than average month.
- In the last 30 years, water vapor has increased by 4% as water evaporates into the clouds. We will continue to have more violent storms because there is more water to pick up and dump back to earth.
- 1452 counties across the US were declared natural disaster areas last year because of violent storms.
- All of the National Academy of Science associations across the globe are unanimous in their belief that global warming is caused by man.
How to Create Wealth in 2013 and Follow Your Values
Jina Penn-Tracy, Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor (CRPC), spoke to us on the differences between Green Investing and Socially Responsible Investing, and how we can use these ideas as we invest in our own futures in 2013 and beyond. Watch her video here.
Plus Kael Robinson with Live Worldly spoke with us about discovering how you can make a difference in the world we live it – just like her cause, Brazilets, has done as it donates $1 from each sale to Plant a Billion Trees.
Now that the election is behind us, what does that mean for our future?
Where do we stand with both sides of Congress?
What does that mean for our future, both here in Colorado and across America?
Re-elected Senator Morgan Carroll gave us an insiders look at the election results and and what it means to our future.
We also heard from Elizabeth Arenales, Director for Colorado Center on Law and Policy, as she spoke on the future of the Affordable Care Act of Colorado and how it will impact our health care and insurance programs in the coming years.
Our October meeting was filled with learning and sharing how we can help move the country forward in a positive way.
We began with an informative presentation by Joanne Schwartz Executive Director from ProgressNow Colorado. She passed on a lot of information to help us stay informed and what we can do to help the election process coming up in a few weeks. For more information, start with the ProgressNow Colorado website. Then take a look at some of the other’s mentioned in Joanne’s presentation – all will help you get a better viewpoint of what’s truly happening out there:
GesslerWatch, to help you understand the true way the vote is being handled here in Colorado
ThanksObamacare, to give you talking points when speaking with friends and family
TrueTheVote, to provide guidance into what is true voter fraud, and what isn’t
CommonCause, to ensure every eligible American has the right to vote
Colorado Ethics Watch, holding public officials and organizations accountable for unethical activities
After Joanne’s informative presentation, we heard from a panel on some of today’s hottest issues. Panelists included:
Senator Pat Steadman
Representative Angela Williams District 7
Representative Beth McCann District 8
Representative Candidate Mary Parker District 22
Questions ranged from “What does it take to get things done in a gridlock atmosphere?” to “What direction will Colorado’s jobs and economy go following this year’s elections?” and “How will women’s rights and seniors be affected?”
What a night!
We started out with an update from the homefront on the Obama campaign from Quincy Smith and Mary Wood. Women are going to determine this election, so let your voices be heard. The undecided and unregistered will be the primary focus. If you want to get involved, you can go to http://co.barackobama.com or head to their South Denver office at 2200 S Monaco Pkwy.
Next we heard from Leslie Oliver from Colorado Rep. Ed Perlmutter’s office and what he is doing to ban assault weapons. He is pushing for an assault weapons ban, creating more regulations to keep assault weapons out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill, banning high capacity magazines, and limiting the online purchase of ammunition.
Finally, we heard Tom Mauser. Tom’s 15 year old son Daniel was murdered in the Columbine High School massacre. He has been an activist for responsible gun laws ever since, such as,
closing the Gun Show loophole (Amendment 22), and keeping our elected officials accountable for how they vote on gun laws. The takeaways from Tom’s presentation were many:
- The power of the NRA
- Military bases do not allow concealed weapons, yet college campuses do
- The Brady Bill expired in 2004 and we have yet to get an assault weapons ban back on the books
- What makes assault weapons deadly is high capacity magazines – 100 rounds in the recent Aurora shooting
And of lot more. If you are ready to take action, head to Colorado Ceasefire and stay informed. You can also purchase Tom’s book, Walking In Daniel’s Shoes.
Read here for more ways to make your voices heard.
Speaker: Abraham Lincoln and Mary Todd Lincoln
Presented by, and benefiting Progressive Women of Colorado (PWC) and Colorado Progressive Coalition (CPC)
Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln led a discussion of civil rights and history and gave us insight on how one of our most popular presidents lived and thought. Abraham Lincoln was amazingly lifelike, with props and scene setters that made you feel like you stepped back in time. After a round of questions and answers, it was a fun way of entering our new election season with new ideas and hopes for our own future!
1) Human Trafficking is a crime involving the severe control of one person over another where the controller profits from the victim’s labor or sexual service. Often coined as modern-day slavery, it is not institutionalized as it is illegal and it cuts across traditional race, class and gender lines.
2) Human Trafficking is considered the fastest growing and second largest criminal industry in the world, subsequent to the illegal drug trade.
3) Human Trafficking in Colorado affects men, women, children, adults, foreign nationals and Americans. Victims of trafficking have been exploited in a variety of settings including agriculture, construction, domestic work, day labor, restaurant and hotel work, forced prostitution and other commercial sex work, servile marriage, the tourism industry and others.
We learned a lot of valuable information about the supplement industry and GMOs (genetically modified foods) with our two speakers this month.
Gerri Kier, Complete Nutrition Alliance, spoke on The Globalism of Farming and what is really happening to our food supply? Watch her short wrap up video for insight into this worrisome trend and what we can do now.
Lani Jacobs-Banner, nutrition educator for Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage shared what the New Dietary Ingredients guidance is, why it was drafted, and how it poses a threat to our access to safe dietary supplements. View her wrap up video here.
Our speaker in April was Congresswoman Diana DeGette, and after 8 terms in office, she had a lot to share with us.
How is it that there is still a war on women’s health and choices? Why do the Republicans use this as a main platform for their attacks and agenda? Is it working? Are women buying into this message? And is there a disappearance of the American Dream of “upward mobility” for the average American? We discussed all of this and more.
Our goal for 2012: Take back the house. Last term we lost 67 seats. In November we need to take back 25 seats for democrats to take back the majority.
If you want to get involved this year, your best use of time and funds is to help elect a democrat to office within your district. Get involved. Or join Emily’s List. Every little bit helps.
At our March meeting, we enjoyed a lively discussion on
Take Back Your Government… the power of grassroots activism and how to stay positive and optimist in today’s political climate.
One of the most volatile topics in America today is health care – Obamacare – and what is best for the American population. February’s meeting met it head on as we discussed what the Affordable Care Act does for you, and what the status is of Health Care Exchanges in our state. Denise (DeDe) de Percin, Executive Director of the Colorado Consumer Health Initiative discussed these important issues and gave us a variety of ideas to help impact our future in a variety of ways. You can view a quick tip from DeDe here.
Additionally Amy Pitlik with Planned Parenthood discussed the implications of the Political climate of the past, present and future and its impacts on Women’s rights and health.
Welcome to 2012 – what a year its going to be. We started off the new year by learning more about the growing problem of Fracking.
If you are new to the Fracking issue, we have many ways for you to learn more.
Our speaker Sonja Scrima gave a lively talk on what Fracking means to us as Americans and how we are being impacted right here in our local community. Start by watching her summary video, then consider taking the next step and getting involved.
Then watch the movie that was featured in this month’s film club – Gasland. It will open your eyes to what has already happened and what the future holds if we don’t take action now.
2nd Annual Holiday Happy Hour -
Hacienda Colorado on Colorado Blvd
2012 is just about over – time to celebrate! At our 2nd annual party, we loved watching the Singing Troupe the Raging Grannies. If you missed out on the fun, you can catch a glimpse through our YouTube videos.
See you in January!
In November we welcomed former First Lady Dottie Lamm with a lively discussion on the Ironies and Contradictions of the Modern Women’s Movement.
Most younger women today lead the “feminist lives” we oldies only dreamed of and then fought for. Yet many will not identify themselves as feminists, and others feel all those battles have been won. The battle is definitely not over as many women have unique challenges in modern society: balancing paid work with domestic work and not taking on the superwoman role are only two of these dilemmas.
We took away hope for our future as we move into a New Year.
It seems like everyone is talking about today’s education system. Too much testing, problems with teachers, wrong teaching methods – everyone has an opinion. But there is one thing we can all agree on – today’s schools are facing severe funding cuts, and we have to concentrate on getting them more so they can do more for the next generation. Carol Hedges led a lively discussion on education, proposition 103, and what we can do here in Colorado to make our school systems one of the best in the nation. Be sure to watch her short clip highlighting what we can do for education.
At our September meeting, we started out with a bang by having lively discussions on today’s current topics. Then we continued with a dynamic presentation on Women in Media today, and what it means to our future, led by Judy Taylor.
Missed the meeting? Be sure to watch our quick YouTube clip and see what Judy has to say on the Power of Women in Media.
Also presenting was Ian Silverii, Deputy Communications Director for Colorado House Democrats, continuing the discussion on women in media, and what we can do as we move into the 2012 election year. Watch his video as well to gain a quick tip on what you can do now.
June 14, 2011
At our June meeting, our table discussions covered a variety of current topics, from the recent mayoral campaign, to debt reduction.
Ken Gordon, former Colorado Senator, then provided us with a look at Preserving Democracy in an Era of Money Politics. This lively discussion provided much insight to the problem that is currently facing our deomocracy, and how we can move forward from here.
“There are two kinds of power in politics; people power and money power,” Gordon said. “Because of two Supreme Court decisions and the general cost of media, money has gained the upper hand in recent decades.”
If you would like to listen to Ken’s presentation, we have it in full here on our YouTube channel.
Then we heard from Steve Justino with Colorado Move to Amend, a call to action committee working together to abolish Corporate Personhood and regain control of government of, for, and by The People. Listen to his quick tip here.
May 10, 2011
New for May – we held table discussions on a variety of topics, including the current mayoral candidates, and what is the number one issue facing women today. Everyone enjoyed getting to know one another, and sharing opinions and ideas.
Then we heard from two Colorado leaders, Melissa Hart, JD, Professor at CU Boulder and ran for CU Regent, and Cary Kennedy, former Colorado State Treasurer 2007-2011, as they presented a lively discussion on taxes, education, and the impact the Tea Party is having on our constitution and our lives.
If you would like a quick tip from Melissa and Cary, please view their short videos on our YouTube channel.
April 12, 2011
Paul Harstad, JD, of Harstad Research Group, pollster for U.S. Senators Mark Udall and Michael Bennet, as well as Barack Obama from 2002 to the present, gave us a presenting a lively discussion on polling trends, Obama’s successes, and how we move forward from here. He discussed the latest polling data and how to use it as insight into the changing political tides in America. In addition, he explored where President Obama sits today in the eyes of Americans, and predictions for the future and coming elections.
If you would like a quick tip from Paul, please view their short videos on our YouTube channel.
March 8, 2011
In honor of Women’s History Month, our speakers took us on a jouney of the women’s movement…
Where have we been, where are we today and where are we going?
Marcia Goldstein, Historian, and Ellie Greenberg Ed.D will reflect back on the suffrage movement and the feminist movement. Our youngest state senator, Cristana Duran, will discuss what progress we’re making now, and what the future holds.
Recommendation: In celebration of Women’s History Month, why not be inspired by what women have accomplished?
Watch the movie Ironed Jaw Angels which is a very accurate historical overview of the suffrage movement
If you would like a quick tip from Marcia, Ellie and Cristana, please view their short videos on our YouTube channel.
February 8, 2011
Jos Linn, Domestic Director for RESULTS and Carol Hedges, the Director of the Colorado Fiscal Policy Institute (both non-partisan organizations) provided a lively discussion on the history and current state of taxes in America and Colorado, and their predictions for the future.
Both Jos and Carol provided a lot of information on the current status of taxes, how we got where we are today, and what is at risk in the future if we don’t start making changes today.
If you would like a quick tip from both Jos and Carol, please view their short videos on our YouTube channel.
January 18, 2011
We welcomed Denver Mayor Candidates:
(1) City Councilman Doug Linkhart
(2) James Mejia, CEO of Denver Preschool Program
(3) Thomas A Wolf
(4) City Councilwoman Carol Boigon
(5) City Councilman Michael Hancock
(6) Danny Lopez
We also welcomed Representative Jeanne Labuda and Laura Hoeppner, Program Director for the Colorado Legislative Women’s Caucus.
For more information on the Denver Mayoral Race, visit Denver Elections Division
We had a fabulous time at Abruscis in Cherry Creek North celebrating the holidays and mixing and mingling.