We are excited to announce our 2019 workshop offerings!

Download a copy of the entire NH Progressive Summit 2019 Program

Our expert presenters explore not just the what, where, and why of each issue, but how to create real change. Your challenge is simply choosing among such a terrific array of sessions! Scroll below to see this year’s NH Progressive Summit offerings.


11:00 A.M. – Noon

We Are Indivisible
Inspired by the 2017 publication of the landmark activist guide on how to resist the Trump agenda, Indivisible groups across the country are building power and generating hundreds local “mini-movements” by engaging in elections, holding leaders accountable and strategic grassroots organizing. Join leaders from Northern New England Indivisible groups for a presentation and discussion on the goals of the Indivisible movement, different strategies and structures local groups use to do the work and what’s in store for Indivisible in 2020 and 2021. Presenters: Jayne Ashworth, Steering Committee, Indivisible MDI, Mount Desert Island, ME; David Holt, Co-leader, Occupy New Hampshire Seacoast, Somersworth, NH; Judy Stadtman, Indivisible Senior Regional Organizer for ME-NH-VT, Portsmouth NH

How to Make the (New) Redistricting Commission Work for You
Ahead of the 2020 census urgent action is needed to ensure fair maps. Come learn about efforts at the State House and actions at the local level to ensure adequate representation. We will look at the key role gerrymandering plays in denying many voters fair representation. We will examine the potential impact of these laws as we move toward key elections and discuss how best organize toward fair maps, including an in-depth look at the potential non-partisan redistricting commission advancing at the state level and how to serve on the commission or successfully advocate around it. With the census and redistricting on the table in 2020, we must act now to ensure that electoral maps are drawn to benefit citizens, not politicians. Presenters: Rep. Dave Doherty; Rep. Dianne Schuett; Kyri Claflin, Kent Street Coalition; and Olivia Zink, Executive Director, Open Democracy

Education Funding 101
How we fund our public schools affects the quality of our schools and the fairness with which we fund them impacts children, taxpayers, and businesses throughout our state. Public education is a key component of an inclusive economy. A fairly funded public education is a right protected by the state constitution as described in the Claremont cases and we should continue to protect and advance this right. Come learn how New Hampshire’s education funding system works and the core issues underlying New Hampshire’s struggles with equitable education funding, and what you can do about it. Presenter: Executive Councilor Andru Volinsky, Lead Counsel for Claremont School Funding cases & Dover School District funding case

Youth Agenda
New Hampshire organizations organizing and mobilizing Granite State youth, high school thru young adult, have been busy the past year recruiting and electing young progressives to office, then supporting them with a strong Youth Agenda at the State House and in municipalities across the state. Come hear from leaders of the youth movement about the newly formed youth table, the formal youth agenda announced at the start of session, how they are organizing in communities across the state, and the important victories they are winning for students, young families, and all Granite Staters. While many politicians focus on baby boomers, the reality is the youth vote is where it is at — if only we organize and speak to the issues facing this generation. Presenters: Lucas Meyer, President, NH Young Democrats; Dylan Carney, NH Youth Movement; Brian Rogers, NextGen New Hampshire

The Power of Modern Families: Knocking Down Barriers and Smashing Inequity!
Our families are as diverse and unique as each one of us. In most families both parents work, we live where we choose and with whom we call family. Additionally, we are facing new challenges – lack of affordable childcare, the impacts opioid crisis and the increasing need for caregiving across the spectrum. Public policy is not always in lock-step with the changing world. We will look at the range of policies that make a difference for families – an interconnected set of solutions – at the local, state and federal level to meet modern needs and challenges. By discussing policy options that lift up all families, we will explore what we can and plan to do in NH and what we should be asking of those working at the federal level. This is an opportunity to not only listen, but to be heard, and come together in action. Presenters: Christina D’Allesandro, State Director, MomsRising; and Rebecca Woitkowski, Esq., Early Childhood Policy Coordinator, New Futures Kids Count

Digital and Social Media for the Reluctant User
Digital and social media are major sources of information and communication used effectively by progressives everywhere. This round-table discussion will be an open forum for reluctant users and those who don’t know much about using social media to discuss their concerns and get some of their questions answered. If you are not using social media in your organization or in your personal political advocacy, or are leery of using it for whatever reason, this is workshop is a must attend for you. We’ll discuss some of the concerns along with some strategies for beginners who might want to start using social media. This will be an informal conversation about the benefits of using social media, not necessarily a tutorial on how to use it. There will be resources for your reference and contacts to help you make forward progress in the digital age. Presenter: Stan Freeda, NH Progressive Activist and Educational Technology and Online Learning Specialist

The Case for Reproductive Justice in 2020
Upset over recent attacks on reproductive justice in Alabama, Georgia, Missouri, and elsewhere? Learn the lay of the land on abortion rights in New Hampshire and nationally, and then participate in a strategy discussion on options for pro-active policy advancements, narrative shift, and public education to strengthen support for reproductive and economic justice for all Granite Staters. Our session will include messaging guidance and local actions underway to make reproductive rights without shame, stigma, or barriers a reality for all. Presenters: Jen Ferris, National Advocacy Director, ProgressNow; Josie Pinto, Reproductive Rights Activist; Amy McCall, State Director, #Fight4HER


1:45 P.M. – 3:15 P.M.

Active Bystander Training
In a time when people are quicker to express anger and more likely to be angry at people “not like them”, many of us are seeking tools to respond effectively to such biased anger. This training will prepare participants to recognize harmdoing, know better how to interrupt it, and decide in advance to act when they can. Presenters: Aron DiBacco & Tate Greco, Granite State Organizing Project

Our Plan for State House Accountability in 2019
Governors can single-handedly veto legislation. State legislatures determine who can vote and who controls Congress for the next decade. State Houses impact everything from health care to wages to climate to reproductive rights and more, but we don’t spend enough time talking about them. Meanwhile, right-wing special interests have been focusing on state houses for decades. Now more than ever, we need strong, coordinated State House accountability – starting in 2019 not 2020 – to secure the advancements we all seek. Come learn about resources and opportunities to take action right now to build toward progressive policy wins in the future. Presenters: Zandra Rice Hawkins, Executive Director, Granite State Progress; Rob Claflin, Swing Blue Working Group, Kent Street Coalition; Louise Spencer, Co-Founder, Kent Street Coalition

Fighting “Ableism:” What Is It & Why We Need to Dismantle It
Ableism is discrimination based on ability/disability. Like its ugly siblings, sexism and racism, it is a system of cultural messages that places people with different abilities at the bottom of the social hierarchy of human worth. Ableism creates barriers for people with disabilities to have equal access to: education, healthcare, employment, recreation, housing, etc. This interactive workshop will help participants to identify when it happens, how to creatively respond, provide resources & tools for changing discriminatory attitudes, practices and structures. Presenter: Lisa Beaudoin, Executive Director, ABLE NH

A #FossilFree603 for Environmental Justice
From the Kinder Morgan NED to Granite Bridge, so-called renewable gas, leaks and the costs to ratepayers. How and why are utilities pushing gas, calling it a climate solution? How can ratepayers and communities get the attention of the PUC? How can citizens move their legislators to stop supporting fossil fuel expansion and create a #FossilFree603? Join us for an overview of what’s happening in NH and nationwide and how together, we can create change in the 2020 election. Presenters: Stephanie Scherr, Founder, ECHO Action; Sue Durling, ECHO Action’s Health Impacts and Emissions Coordinator; Pat Martin, ECHO Action’s Energy Policy and Public Utilities Lead Coordinator

Let’s Get Money Out of Politics
Voters across the political spectrum overwhelmingly agree that the system is broken and needs to be fixed, so that citizens’ voices can be heard. Come learn about the legislation that would allow political candidates to opt-out of “the Money Primary” and instead fund their campaigns with small-dollar contributions from constituents supplemented with “Voter Dollars” . Under the current system, power rests in the hands of those with the most money and influence. It is time to stop the big money politics by working toward Voter-Owned Elections. Presenter: Olivia Zink, Executive Director, Open Democracy Action

Dynamic & Authentic Public Speaking
Whether you are speaking to inform or inspire, this workshop will explore the most effective way to present a speech to accomplish your aim. Learn how to connect with your audience, how to hold the audience’s attention, how to use pace, rhythm and pausing to good effect, and how to present your body language so you appear confident and trustworthy. Presenter: Linda Carmichael, Public Speaking Trainer for Rights & Democracy NH

How NH is Moving Forward with Improvements in Children’s Behavioral Health & Other Efforts to Improve Mental Health Access in Our State
Come learn about the New Hampshire Children’s Behavioral Health Collaborative, NH’s emerging System of Care for children, and recent policy initiatives from this legislative session. The New Hampshire Children’s Behavioral Health Collaborative is a diverse network of individuals and organizations who work in partnership to transform the way we support children with behavioral health needs. The Collaborative supports state-level policy changes to transform New Hampshire’s children’s mental health and substance use disorder system into an integrated, comprehensive System of Care that is youth and family driven, community-based, and culturally and linguistically competent. In 2016, New Hampshire passed a System of Care law for children’s behavioral health. The law (RSA 135-F) requires the State to develop and maintain an integrated and comprehensive service delivery system for children with behavioral health needs. This legislative session, the Collaborative successfully led the effort to pass Senate Bill 14, a bill that takes a systemic approach to child welfare reform and ensures children and youth get the appropriate support services where and when they need them, using a System of Care framework. SB 14 takes a step forward by further integrating the child welfare system with the children’s behavioral health System of Care, as recommended in the 2018 DCYF Adequacy and Enhancement Assessment. This conversation will also include other recent overall landscape developments for mental health, including the status of the much-discussed movement of the secure psychiatric unit from behind prison walls to a more appropriate health care setting. For decades in New Hampshire, patients who need secure treatment but have committed no crime have inappropriately been sent behind prison walls for the care they need, leading to further trauma for patients and families. Presenters: Becky Whitley and Dellie Champagne, New Hampshire Children’s Behavioral Health Collaborative, New Futures; Rep. Renny Cushing


3:30 P.M. – 5:00 P.M.

Birddogging Tactics for Changing the Political Debate
Given New Hampshire traditions of participatory democracy and the special role of the nation’s first Presidential Primary election, New Hampshire voters have an unusual opportunity to interact directly with people who seek public office on the local, state and federal level. With good preparation, we can use those interactions not only to find out where candidates stand on crucial issues but also to drive the political discourse in the direction of more justice, more peace, and more democracy. “Birddogging” is a term that describes techniques to get public officials or candidates to address issues out in the open, for all to see and hear. This workshop shows participants how birddogging works and how to do it so that you feel more comfortable when practicing this tool (less anxiety, trepidation, or fear). Come and hone your birddogging skills while learning about local campaigns that will utilize the tactic over the coming year. In New Hampshire an election is always just around the corner; it’s time to get ready! Presenters: Olivia Zink, Executive Director, Open Democracy; Isaac Grimm, Organizing Director, Rights & Democracy NH

Creating Universal Medicare for All
“Medicare for All” is at the confluence of currents running through our nation. Consciousness is rising that we can enjoy the automatic, universal and high quality care that is taken for granted in all other modern nations, at half the price of our current system. We marvel at marble hospital atriums, even as grade schools cannot afford insurance premiums for teachers. This unprecedented disparity, in which zip code determines life expectancy, occurs while family savings are diverted into profit for America’ss Health Insurance Plans and Pharma. As we mark wondrous technical achievements of modern medicine, we newly witness an undertow of “diseases of despair. ” We will discuss how to bring home true health system reform from a PNHP perspective. Presenter: Dr Ken Dolkart MD FACP, Steering Committee, Granite State Physicians for a National Health Program

Climate Change Activism in NH – We’re Done Being Polite
Do your wrists hurt from all those polite emails and postcards you’ve writing to legislators asking them to vote for good energy bills ? Join progressive activists Victoria Parmele and Kimberly Rawson for a blunt and informative overview of energy policy and politics in New Hampshire. And join us to learn about effective actions you/we all can take to create an amazing renewable energy future for our state. Climate change is blowing down our doors. Now is the time for us to be bold and take action as a team of united citizens. Presenters: Victoria Parmele, 350NH and Strafford Regional Planning Commission; Kimberly Rawson; Agrarian Trust, Science Educator

Immigration Policy in the USA – How We Got Here and What We Can Do to Lead to Meaningful Change
With immigration increasingly at the top of our news broadcasts, you may be asking yourself what can be done and equally importantly – how did we get here? This session will look at the issue of immigration in the US over the past century and examine the policy decisions that got us to where we are today. We will answer your questions, and propose concrete actions that we can all take to ensure that this key issues is not forgotten. Presenters: Eva Castillo, New Hampshire Alliance for Immigrants and Refugees; Christina D’Allesandro, State Director, MomsRising

The Epidemic of “Deaths of Despair” in New Hampshire and What It Means for Our Politics
Despite wide-spread recognition of the opioid crisis raging through New Hampshire and other US states, there remains little awareness of a much greater health crisis underway in our communities: the overwhelming number of deaths due not only to opioids but also to alcohol and suicide. New Hampshire is among the worst states affected by this very different, but deadly, epidemic. These “deaths of despair” have already begun to reverse nearly a century of steady increases in life expectancy in the United States and, coupled with the effects of chronic diseases, could lead to significant reversals in American society. This talk will outline the dynamics of this epidemic and suggest some initial thoughts about the political and policy changes needed to address this complex issue. Presenter: Peter Glenshaw, Community Advocate

That concludes the approved 2019 workshop offerings to date! Good luck choosing!

See examples of previous NH Progressive Summit workshops below:

Words That Work: Communicating on Gun Violence Prevention in the Granite State

Rep. Rogers & Zandra, GSPHow do we most effectively communicate on the need for action that helps keep guns out of the wrong hands and save lives? Drawing on national public opinion research – including among Granite Staters – this presentation and Q&A with the team at Americans for Responsible Solutions – the organization founded by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords – will provide advocates and allies with more tools to discuss critical gun violence prevention policies like background checks, child access prevention laws, and extreme risk protection orders. Presenter: Mark Prentice, Americans for Responsible Solutions

 Organizing to Win Transgender Non-Discrimination Protections

This workshop is a primer on the most persuasive ways to talk about transgender non-discrimination, and the campaign tactics the Freedom New Hampshire coalition is utilizing to advance a transgender non-discrimination bill the next time it is introduced, including house parties, business endorsements, and schools organizing. Presenters: Linds Jakows, Campaign Manager, Freedom New Hampshire; Alexis Payne, Rights & Democracy New Hampshire’s Transgender Organizing and Leadership Development (TOLD) Team

Steps to Media Success: How to Work with the Media

You’re doing important work and it needs to be amplified – which means you’re going to need to be comfortable working with the media. Learn the four steps to media success: research, messaging, delivery, and control, plus how to use visual cues to enhance your impact. This workshop is strongly encouraged for New Wave Leaders working with the media. Presenters: Lauren Smith, Communications Director, SEA/SEIU Local 1984; Molly Cowan, Communications Manager, Planned Parenthood NH Action Fund; Sarah Palermo, Communications and Outreach Manager, New Hampshire Legal Assistance

Digital and Social Media for the Reluctant User

Digital and social media are major sources of information and communication used effectively by progressives everywhere.  This round-table discussion will be an open forum for reluctant users and those who don’t know much about using social media to discuss their concerns and get some of their questions answered. If you are not using social media in your organization or in your personal political advocacy, or are leery of using it for whatever reason, this is workshop is a must attend for you. We’ll discuss some of the concerns along with some strategies for beginners who might want to start using social media. This will be an informal conversation about the benefits of using social media, not necessarily a tutorial on how to use it.  There will be resources for your reference and contacts to help you make forward progress in the digital age. Presenter: Stan Freeda, Progressive Website Developer and IT Specialist

Positive Policy – Layering Advocacy for Maximum Impact

Advocacy can come in many forms, shapes and colors – effective advocacy often involves multiple tactics of layers which ensure your message is heard. We will discuss the layers of the MomsRising advocacy cake and explore successful multilayer approaches to advocacy. We will discuss the value of the positive organizing alongside other tactics, and brainstorm approaches to your advocacy challenges. This is a highly interactive workshop. Presenters: Christina DAllesandro, NH Director, MomsRising; Sarah Sadowski, Organizer, Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy

From a Moment to a Movement

As members of the resistance, we’ve all had that moment when we knew something had to be done. Maybe it’s an issue you feel passionate about, or maybe it’s a particular situation you want to change. This workshop will give you the skills necessary to take that moment and turn it into a movement. You’ll gain skills from using a strategy chart, to stakeholder mapping, to building your brand, and more! After this workshop you’ll leave feeling fired up and ready to go! It doesn’t matter if you’re a seasoned activist or a newcomer, this discussion-based workshop is certain to give you a new perspective into building a movement. Presenter: Matthew J. Mooshian, Community Organizer from the Upper Valley region. Co-Founder and Chair of TLC Family Resource Center’s Rural Outright program, and Upper Valley Outreach Lead for Save the Children Action Network

Local Democracy: Empowering Economic, Social & Environmental Justice

In this workshop we take a look at how political and legal structures have been set up to protect the interests of an elite wealthy minority, at the expense of the majority of people and natural environments. We’ll look at how corporations have elevated rights and protections over real people and ecosystems living in communities and we’ll look at how a growing number of New Hampshire communities have pushed back against these oppressive power structures to reclaim local democracy for economic, social and environmental justice at both the local and state level. Presenters: Michelle Sanborn, Co-Founder of Citizens of Alexandria Rights Effort (C.A.R.E.) Group and President of NH Community Rights Network, State Representative Ellen Read, and Monica Christofili, Co-Founder of Alliance for Newmarket Citizens & Ecosystem Rights (A.N.C.E.R.)

Climate Change and Drinking Water Protection: National Security and Social and Economic Injustice

The Trump Administration cannot remove climate change data from the EPA websites and make it go away. We will discuss how Trump Administration policies and the refusal to sign the Paris Accord will impact international and national communities, and how the influence of lobbyists and science and climate change deniers at the federal and state level affects the ability to pass sound policy that protects public health.  In particular, we will focus on how race, gender, and class issues intersect with climate change, creating greater harm and economic challenges for women and women of color, in particular, during climate-related disasters and changes. We will discuss how climate change and drinking water protection are the top two threats to our national security. Climate change is the backdrop for conflicts around the world and will only become a greater threat. Presenter: State Rep. Mindi Messmer, Environmental Scientist, Member of Governor’s Task Force on the Seacoast Cancer Cluster Investigation, and New Hampshire Safe Water Alliance

20 Years After Claremont: The Case for Fair Public School Funding

How we fund our public schools remains a strong concern in New Hampshire because the quality of our schools and the fairness with which we fund them impacts children, taxpayers and businesses throughout our state. Public education is a key component of an inclusive economy.  The gaps in school funding are real and are current as evidenced by the Dover School Funding suit and the failure of the state to fund special education costs (called “Cat Aid”), vocational/tech tuitions and transportation costs, and building aid.  A fairly funded public education is a right protected by the state constitution as described in the Claremont cases and we should continue to protect and advance this right. Learn the history of education funding in New Hampshire and where we go from here. Presenter: Executive Councilor Andru Volinsky, Lead Counsel for Claremont School Funding cases &  Dover School District funding case

Building an Intersectional Movement for Social Change

The term “intersectionality” is finally making its way into everyday language in social justice organizing, but there are a lot of misunderstandings about the term that eat away at the transformative potential for intersectional justice organizing.  Emerging relatively recently in the 1990s out of black feminist scholarship, intersectionality confronts that all forms of oppression are interwoven in the lived experience of each individual and community. Our freedom will be hard fought and we need good strategies to win. First we need to know what we’re fighting against, starting within ourselves and our communities. This workshop will help us to do that. Further, intersectional theory can provide the analytical tools–the thought leadership–for self-awareness and movement-building strategy that will help us understand the problems that we face in growing a movement that will help us fight together toward our collective liberation. Presenters: Kate Logan, RAD Bi-State Director of Programming and Policy, Isaac Grimm, RAD NH Organizing Director

Changing the Political Debate: Birddogging Tactics

Given New Hampshire traditions of participatory democracy and the special role of the nation’s first Presidential Primary election, New Hampshire voters have an unusual opportunity to interact directly with people who seek public office on the local, state and federal level. With good preparation, we can use those interactions not only to find out where candidates stand on crucial issues but also to drive the political discourse in the direction of more justice, more peace, and more democracy. “Birddogging” is a term that describes techniques to get public officials or candidates to address issues out in the open, for all to see and hear. This workshop shows participants how birddogging works and how to do it so that you feel more comfortable when practicing this tool (less anxiety, trepidation, or fear).  Come and hone your birddogging skills while learning about local campaigns that will utilize the tactic over the coming year. In New Hampshire an election is always just around the corner; it’s time to get ready! Presenters: Olivia Zink, Executive Director, Open Democracy; Arnie Alpert, American Friends Service Committee

Digital Organizing Training         

As organizations and candidates look to harness the power of digital platforms in a smarter, more efficient way for the 2018 elections and beyond, questions have arisen regarding how best to use these various platforms for Digital Organizing. But what is digital organizing, and who is a Digital Organizer? Join Lockwood Strategy as we review digital organizing best practices and how to reach your audience online in order to engage them offline on the issues and campaigns you care about. Whether you’re using social media to organize for the first time as a resistance leader or a veteran of digital campaigns, hear our take on the importance of combining your online and offline strategies into one cohesive campaign plan. Presenter: Andrea Ramos, Training Manager, Lockwood Strategy

How to Stop Nuclear Weapons & Militarization

Almost three decades after the Cold War ended, the world still has 15,000 nuclear weapons, missiles remain on hair-trigger alert, and international tensions have again raised fears of nuclear war. Fortunately, the rebirth of nuclear abolition activism in the United States and other countries offers reason for hope. Come to this workshop to learn about the current situation and discuss proposals to reduce nuclear tensions and move toward abolition. Presenter: Judy Elliott, N.H. Nuclear Weapons Working Group of NH Peace Action and the American Friends Service Committee – New Hampshire

The Fossil Fuel Industry’s Latest Attack on Our State and Our Climate: People Power and the Granite Bridge Pipeline

It is no secret that the fossil fuel industry has bought Governor Sununu’s support.  Liberty Utilities proposes to build a 27 mile fracked gas pipeline between Manchester and Stratham, running through Exeter, Epping, Brentwood, Candia, Auburn and Raymond.  To increase profit, they will also build a two billion cubic foot tank to store compressed methane gas in Epping.  Pipelines are a poor economic investment, they threaten our health and safety, and burning fracked methane gas causes global climate change. Join 350 New Hampshire for a closer look at the proposal, and to find out what you can do to make sure NH builds the renewable energy future that we need. Presenter: Griffin Sinclair-Wingate, 350NH

*** NH Progressive Summit Planning Committee: NH Building Trades Council and Senators from both sides of the aisle have endorsed this plan. 350NH, and a number of grassroots community groups and environmental organizations are in opposition. We encourage people to learn more about the proposal and attend upcoming public hearings to hear both sides and take action! ***

Resisting the Corporate Gun Lobby: Working Across Political Divides to Pass Common Sense Gun Violence Prevention Legislation

Most policies that reduce gun violence are overwhelmingly popular. Even among conservative leaning voters, Republicans, gun owners and National Rifle Association (NRA) members, policies like background checks for all gun sales enjoy majority support. In fact, just next door Vermont Governor Phil Scott (R) recently signed into law a package of bills including universal background checks, Red Flag orders, steps to protect domestic violence survivors from gun violence, a prohibition of the sale of high capacity magazines and bump stocks, and an increase in the minimum age to purchase all firearms in the state to 21.  Our panel will include first-hand accounts from the Vermont legislative campaign, then talk about organizing efforts in New Hampshire from the State Senate and House Gun Violence Prevention Caucus, to the student organizing effort, to broader efforts related to domestic violence, suicide, and mental health. Participants will learn how to get more involved in these efforts, including the NH Gun Violence Prevention Coalition which has coordinated legislative strategy and public education around firearms legislation for the last 5 years. Presenters: Clai Lasher-Sommers, Executive Director, VT GunSense and Steering Committee, NH Gun Violence Prevention Coalition; Rep. Katherine Rogers, Co-Chair, Senate and House Gun Violence Prevention Caucus; Jennifer White, Social Justice League (Student GVP Network) Leader and Granite State Progress High School Intern; and Dr. David R. Coursin, Retired Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth; Moderated by Grace Mattern, Former Executive Director of the NH Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence

Protecting and Advancing Health Care: Medicare for All Campaign

Astronomical healthcare costs and lack of access continue to drive individuals, families and businesses past their breaking point while insurance companies continue to soak-up billions of healthcare dollars as millions of children’s basic needs go unmet. There is growing support for a Medicare for all healthcare system that requires each participating state to set up and administer comprehensive healthcare services as an entitlement for all, through a progressively financed, single-payer system, administered by the states. Medicare has provided guaranteed healthcare for millions of American seniors for more than 51 years. It’s time we have a Medicare for all, single-payer healthcare system that would end health disparities, effectively control costs, and assure that everyone has equal access to an excellent standard of care. Learn how to get involved in the New Hampshire and national campaign to make it a reality, and what we  must do to protect current health care programs along the way . Presenters: Emily Ricards, National Nurses United; Dr. Ahmed Kutty, Granite State Physicians for a National Health Plan

From the State House to The Ballot Box: Gerrymandering, Voter Suppression and Democracy
This past term, the NH Legislature passed several bills restricting voting rights while it simultaneously refused to adopt measures that would ensure fairer elections and more equal access to the ballot box.  This is a pattern being played out in state legislatures across the country, driven by a long-term political strategy on the right.  We will examine the potential impact of these laws as we move toward key elections in 2018 and 2020 and discuss how best to counter the negative effects.  We will look at the key role gerrymandering plays in denying many voters fair representation, both here in New Hampshire and throughout the United States.  We will give an overview of several important cases currently working their way through the courts and talk about bi-partisan efforts at redistricting reform.  With the census and redistricting on the table in 2020, we must act now to ensure that electoral maps are drawn to benefit citizens, not politicians. Presenters: Olivia Zink, Executive Director, Open Democracy; Lucas Meyer, President, New Hampshire Young Democrats; Louise Spencer, Co-Founder, Kent Street Coalition; Michael O’Brien, Political Director, America Votes – New Hampshire

People-Powered Resistance: Using Nonviolent Direct Action to Force Social Change

Significant social change rarely starts with elections or legislation. Often, it takes campaigns involving nonviolent direct action, including mass civil disobedience, to force the political system to respond to people clamoring for more democracy, protection of human rights, economic justice, and a more peaceful world. Using examples including New Hampshire’s homegrown “No Nukes” movement and the current Poor People’s Campaign, Arnie Alpert will use stories of “people power” to spark discussion of strategies outside the realm of politics-as-usual. Presenter: Arnie Alpert, Co-Director, American Friends Service Committee NH and Non-Violence Direct Action Trainer for last 40 years

The Path to Progressive Power: Electoral Landscape & Democracy Reform in the Granite State

This session is designed to look back at trends from 2014 through present day and plans being made incrementally for electoral gains in 2018 and 2020. Democracy reforms like voting rights and nonpartisan redistricting will be critical as NH prepares for the reapportionment of Congressional and State Legislative maps. This session will dive into the data behind 2014, 2016 and what it tells us heading into 2018.  The session will also highlight why election modernization and the fight to protect voting rights is critically tied to maintaining progressive power. Presenters: Paula Hodges, America Votes-NH State Director, Mike O’Brien, America Votes -NH Political & Field Director; Zach Jonas, America Votes -NH Data Manager

Nuclear Weapons in the Trump Era

With the end of the Cold War, attention has waned concerning the dangers of nuclear war.  Yet these dangers are in some ways greater than ever.  Progressives need to rebuild the movement against nuclear weapons and nuclear war. Presenter: Dr. Curtis C. Smith, Chair, New Hampshire Peace Action

Actor, Ally, or Accomplice?

Many progressives do not get involved with causes outside of their comfort zones or areas of expertise because they do not feel “qualified” or are “afraid to say the wrong things.” While these are certainly valid fears, they are also hindrances to our Progressive movement overall, as they stop us from taking necessary actions to right a wrong for fear of being wrong. This session will help people understand their place in movements they are not centered in, and will help them build the confidence and skills necessary to advocate for changes needed to help marginalized groups seeking justice. We will leave this workshop with a greater understanding of the difference between an ally and accomplice, and a renewed ability to hold ourselves accountable for being accomplices, especially as being allies for the cause is easier, and being actors in the oppression is the natural makeup of our society. Presenter: Felicia Teter, Recent Dartmouth College Graduate & Tribal Member, Yakama Nation in Washington State

Education Vouchers:  Choice for Whom?

The privatization of public education is proceeding rapidly across the United States and has spread to New Hampshire. Whether it be the broad-based voucher bill currently in the Legislature (SB193) or the so-called Croydon bill (SB8) permitting local districts to use public funds to send students to private schools, public education is under assault in New Hampshire. Moreover, these attacks are aided and abetted by our Commissioner of Education, Frank Edelblut, who has been active in supporting these policy initiatives despite his disclaimer at his confirmation hearing that he would be a mere administrator and not a policymaker. Advocates of these initiatives repeatedly claim it is all about “choice” especially “choice” for parents and children to seek out the best educational opportunities. This workshop aims to examine this claim and look at how this policy is not equitable or available to all. Therefore, by using public funds, we privilege and subsidize certain groups at the expense of a public education system that is open to all and is a key institution for promoting democracy in our society. In fact, by using public funds to subsidize private education, we starve the public sector, making it even more difficult to meet the heavy demands of a diverse population and the multitude of required programs, facilities, and personnel mandated by regulators and by the needs of a diverse student body. Hopefully, by the end of this workshop you will comprehend the basics of vouchers as they stand in New Hampshire, the role of our Commissioner of Education, and be ready and able to respond to those who tout vouchers as merely facilitating “choice.” Presenters: State Rep. Douglas Ley, President, American Federation of Teachers-New Hampshire; Jasmine D. Oke, Senior Associate for Educational Issues, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO (AFT) – Washington, DC

Teamwork Makes the Dream Work: Long Term Activism, Organizational Structure, and Self-Care

After the events of the 2016 election, grassroots organizations around the county have been stepping up to organize in their communities. As volunteer organizers, it takes a lot of hard work to balance careers, life, and activism, especially during this heightened time of anxiety. There are many ways to combat disenchantment, foster the momentum, and organize for the long term. In this workshop, we will dive deep into organizational structure, leadership ladders, self-care, and knowing our limits. Join the discussion and pave the way to a sustainable future; for yourself and for your organization. Presenters: Jillian Matson, Northeast Regional Director, Progressive Turnout Project; Sara Pereschino, Campaign & Communications Consultant; Dan Weeks, Chair of Open Democracy and Director of Market Development for ReVision Energy

Workshop: Bird-dog Training

Given New Hampshire traditions of participatory democracy and the special role of the nation’s first Presidential Primary election, New Hampshire voters have an unusual opportunity to interact directly with people who seek public office on the local, state and federal level. With good preparation, we can use those interactions not only to find out where candidates stand on crucial issues but also to drive the political discourse in the direction of more justice, more peace, and more democracy. “Birddogging” is a term that describes techniques to get public officials or candidates to address issues out in the open, for all to see and hear. This workshop shows participants how birddogging works and how to do it so that you feel more comfortable when practicing this tool (less anxiety, trepidation, or fear).  Come and hone your birddogging skills while learning about local campaigns that will utilize the tactic over the coming year. In New Hampshire an election is always just around the corner; it’s time to get ready! Presenters: Olivia Zink, Executive Director, Open Democracy; Melissa Bernardin, Facilitator

Voicing Our Values – Message Framing for Progressive Elected Officials and Advocates

Message framing is not a silver bullet; it’s just one political tool among many. But with so many close campaign battles, a little better messaging could make a big difference in our fight for economic and social justice. It’s the same reason why right wing groups spend millions of dollars on message framing and persistently repeat that language. Voicing Our Values is a highly interactive workshop on research-based language that progressives should use to address a wide range of domestic issues, including highly-controversial matters like abortion, immigration, health care, gun violence prevention, and voter ID. This training is appropriate for both progressive elected officials and advocates and includes ideas for how to incorporate your own experiences and voice on the policies and campaigns you seek to impact. Participants will also receive information on how to download the messaging book “Voicing Our Values” which includes further practical messaging on many specific issue areas (e.g. budget and taxes, education, environment). Presenter: Gloria Totten, Found and President, Public Leadership Institute and Co-Author of “Voicing Our Values”

A Just Society Demands a Just Government

This workshop seeks to define the attributes of a just society and how government, at all levels, either positively or negatively impacts such a society.  While conservatives and progressives would likely define “just” from different perspectives, on one thing both sides can agree and that is, government has a role.  As an arbiter of resource allocation through taxation and distribution, as a consumer of goods and services, as an employer of human resources, and as a rule-maker of economic activity, the governing body establishes the climate for society, thereby either nourishing or starving its potential to thrive. The Economic Justice Caucus, a Democratic group of lawmakers in the NH House, is dedicated to enhancing economic opportunity for every New Hampshire citizen. With a commitment to a shared economy that lifts up our working men and women and their families the EJC, through its legislative agenda and leadership capacity, seeks to ensure a just economy in our state. Presenters: Rep. Jackie Cilley, Chair, Economic Justice Caucus; Rep. Kermit Williams, Vice-Chair, Economic Justice Caucs; and various Economic Justice Caucus members

Protecting the Affordable Care Act — and Then Moving Forward on Health Reform

Governor Sununu celebrated the passage of Trumpcare 2.0, which takes health care away from 23 million Americans, slashes Medicaid, sends premiums through the roof, promotes barebones coverage, and puts people with pre-existing conditions back at the mercy of the private insurance companies. All this just to give huge tax breaks to the wealthy and to maximize profits for drug and insurance corporations. But we say resist! And if Obamacare is repealed (or even if it’s not), let’s replace it with single payer! Join us for a health care campaign strategy discussion about how Granite Staters can impact federal health policy discussions by putting pressure on Governor Sununu and others to protect health care in our state. Our discussion will be part ACA protection, part strengthening the ACA, and part moving beyond it to truly have health care for all. Presenter: David Meuse, Indivisible Portsmouth; Dr. Ahmed Kutty, Granite State Physicians for a National Health Plan; Dr. Donald Kollisch, Granite State Physicians for a National Health Plan

Ready for 100% Renewable Energy: Campaign Planning Workshop

The Sierra Club’s Ready for 100 campaign is a nationwide effort to influence towns, cities, regions, and states to commit to 100% of their energy coming from renewable sources by 2050. On May 9th, 2017 Hanover residents voted during their town meeting to commit to a goal of 100% renewable electricity by 2030 and 100% renewable heating and transportation by 2050. Hanover is the 28th town in the country to commit to this goal, and the first in New Hampshire. This workshop is designed to give an overview of the national Ready for 100 campaign and our work in Hanover and surrounding Upper Valley towns. We will also be speaking about our campaign strategy in Hanover and working with participants to develop a similar plan to help get their towns/cities to commit to being powered by 100% renewable energy. Hanover’s commitment is just the first step – we’re ready to mobilize towns across New Hampshire to be 100% renewable! Presenters: Allyson Samuell, Associate Organizing Representative, Sierra Club’s Ready for 100 Campaign; Judith Colla, Co-Chair, Sierra Club Upper Valley Group’s Executive Committee

Addressing Structural Racism and Oppression

Structural racism is about power in our society. It is the total of cultural norms, institutionalized inequality and individual attitudes, acting on each one of us  at all times. It is one of the core root causes of every problem in our communities, and no significant change can happen locally or nationally without addressing structural racism. Like creating social change more broadly, taking on structural racism requires responsibility and risk, conflict and controversy, personal reflection and public action. This workshop will establish a framework of analysis on structural racism, and begin to use that analysis to understand other forms of oppression, and offer participants action steps to continue the work of addressing structural racism. Presenter: Maria Fitzsimmons, Organizing Director, Rights and Democracy

Reframing the Debate on Job Creation: Fight for $15

This workshop will share research about income inequality and why income inequality has been growing over the last 4 decades; then pivot to how raising the minimum wage will result in higher income for lower and middle class families, grow jobs, and reduce income inequality.  This interactive session is filled with anecdotes and real-world examples to help people retain and share facts around the minimum wage. Presenter: Jeremy Dupuis, Co-Chair, New Hampshire Fight for $15 Committee

New Wave Leaders Caucus

New Wave Groups are the face of the resistance and the leaders paving the way forward community by community. But being a leader is tough work, especially when you’re an all-volunteer organization in the Trump era of daily scandals and attacks on our basic rights. Join together with other New Wave Leaders for a straight-forward conversation on where you are in your organization, where you want to be, and how to get there. This New Wave Leaders Caucus is geared towards leaders of new and emerging grassroots organizations and will include short tutorials on How to Sustain a Grassroots Organization and How to Manage Facebook Support, followed by facilitated discussion and networking. Presenters: Moderated by Paula Hodges, America Votes with tutorials by Dave Holt, Seacoast Occupy; Molly Campbell,

 Taking Effective Non-Violent Direct Action

“Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue.” Dr. King,  Letter from a Birmingham Jail. People in power make decisions about our lives every day. We can confront them through the ballot box,  but we can also confront then directly to win the specific changes we seek.  If our decision makers won’t negotiate with them then we have the tool of nonviolent direct action to create the situation we need to level three playing field.  This workshop with review the basics of nonviolent direct action and specific strategies and tactics to use going forward. Presenter: Maria Fitzsimmons, Organizing Director, Rights and Democracy

Get the Words You Need to Heal the World You Love: Copywriting for Social Change

Your mission is vital. But to succeed, you need power. You need influence. You need other people to care as much as you do. Powerful copywriting is how you get what you need. Copywriting sound like a technical thing, but really, it’s just the words and stories in your brochures, your press releases, your websites, your social media, your presentations that ignite other people’s passion. Extraordinary copywriting makes people care and act. This practical, tip-rich workshop trains you to write copy that connects and converts, so you can achieve the progressive change we desperately need. Presenters: Becky Karush, BeckyK Creative Marking; Terri Trespicio, New York-based Writer, Branding Consultant, and Co-Creator of Lights Camera Expert

How to Use Social Media to Push Your Message

Whether you are a candidate, a single-issue campaign organization, or a broad progressive coalition, using Facebook and other social media platforms is an absolute must.  Learn how to use Facebook and Twitter like a pro and give your message a boost. Some of the topics we will discuss: managing multiple Facebook pages, creating engaging Facebook posts, creating a Meme, topics to avoid, online trolls (the pros and cons), creating powerful tweets and other twitter basics, and the importance of reaching out to local bloggers to spread your message.  Presenter: Matt Murray, Creator, NH Labor News

Lobbying 101

This workshop will be about what lobbying means, and how you can use your activism to influence decision makers. We’ll go over the basic of how to lobby along with developing your story, best practices, and potential challenges (geographical, social anxiety, etc). We will also highlight lobbying meetings with a specific ask versus building relationships with lawmakers. Finally, we’ll cover how to use the General Court website to track bills, votes, and view the calendar. Presenter: Kayla Montgomery, Director of Advocacy and Organizing, Planned Parenthood New Hampshire Action Fund; Jessica McGondel, Planned Parenthood NH Action Team Volunteer

Take Back the Map: Redistricting Reform & Voting Rights

Should politicians pick voters or should voters pick politicians? The first section of this workshop will contextualize the redistricting process in New Hampshire and the 2020 census and redistricting that is just around the corner. Along with analyzing the current district lines, we will address legislative solutions to put the power of redistricting back into the hands of the people.  The second section of the workshop will address the radical anti-democracy campaign to roll back voting rights and campaign finance regulation, where it stands in New Hampshire and nationally, and how we can work together to stop it. Presenters: Olivia Zink, Executive Director, Open Democracy; Paul Twomey, Elections Law Attorney & Advocate; Brendan Summers, Campaign Director, Let America Vote

What’s in My Water and What Can I Do About It?

This workshop will get attendees up to speed on some of the threats you face when you turn on the tap in our state.  Why do I keep hearing about PFCs and what are they?  How big is the problem? What kinds of problem can be caused by drinking contaminated water?  Why is EverSource buying our water systems?  Citizen advocacy has been extremely effective in driving real change through legislation and regulatory oversight in our state.  Attendees will hear about how an advocacy group was founded and how everyone can help advocate for clean, safe drinking water across the state. Presenters: New Hampshire Safe Water Alliance members State Rep. Mindi Messmer, Scientist, Member of Governor’s Task Force on the Seacoast Cancer Cluster Investigation; State Rep. Renny Cushing, Co-Founder, Clamshell Alliance; Lisa Moll, Author of “Rye’s Battle of the Century: Saving the New Hampshire Seacoast from Olympic Oil”

Reparationists Are the New Abolitionists

Colonial and post-colonial American society and economy were built on the dehumanization of the African personality in the European imagination. The benefits to and involvement of all of American society (both North and South) is undeniable and indisputable based on the pervasiveness and persistence of the economic, social and political institutions and practices that continue even today. In the past, those who objected to and opposed the degradation of chattel slavery based on the impact of the enslaved and the degenerative impact on the moral character and human decency of the enslaver answered the clarion call of the abolitionist. Today, those who object to and oppose the vestiges of this crime against humanity join the call to repair the injuries caused to individuals by African chattel slavery and to rehabilitate the institutions used to carry out the injustices answer the call for reparations! Presenter: Brenda Lett, National Secretary for the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America (N’COBRRA) and Co-Author of “Race Between Us”; Facilitator, Emotional Emancipation Circles

SEA World Café

Come join us in conversation to explore challenges and opportunities, and discover the collective wisdom and possibilities that will help us build stronger connections.  Though we come with individual backgrounds, our community is one living system; if one part is not well, the whole system is impacted. What could a committed group of citizens with a shared intention of strengthening our connections accomplish? What else might happen if multiple groups from across our state, with the same intention could talk to each other? Join us on the cutting edge of 10,000-year old technology – conversation! What patterns will we begin to notice? What power would be created in learning this together? Presenters: Joe Cicirelli, Organizing Administrator, SEA/SEIU Local 1984; David Holt, Lead External Organizer, SEA/SEIU Local 1984

Understanding Conflict, Culture and Cross-Cultural Conflict in an Unequal, Globalized World

Most of us avoid it, but conflict can be a positive force for change and progress – if it’s managed well.  In today’s globalized world, and even here in New Hampshire, we live and work and interact across an increasing diversity of cultures.  These two aspects of the human experience – conflict and culture – can combine in very positive, and in quite challenging ways. In this workshop we will share insights into conflict, culture, and how we can best manage their interplay.  It will combine a conceptual overview of the concepts, some small-group discussion, and an exercise or two to deepen understanding and have a bit of fun. Presenter: Mark McPeak, former Executive Director of UUSC Just Democracy, PeaceCorps Member, and Graduate, Advanced Studies in Dispute Resolution at the Law School of the University of New South Wales

The Transpeople in Bathroom Issue

Rachael Booth is a 9-year Navy veteran of the Vietnam War who spent 30 years as a senior computer scientist programming and designing Shipboard Weapons and Missile systems for the US Navy.  She will share her experiences as a 64 year old transgender woman who has lectured on the transgender “experience” in universities and colleges since 1992 and authored the book “Wishing on a Star – My Journey Across the Gender Divide.’’ The session will focus on personal stories and the current political frenzy around bathrooms. Presenter: Rachael Booth, Author of “Wishing on a Star – My Journey Across the Gender Divide”

Addressing Racism: Reflection and Action

The goal of this workshop is to assist participants in understanding why it is worth it for them to address race and structural racism in their work, no matter what issue or action they are working on, to be clear what is at stake for them personally and for their success if they do not, and finally, how to do it effectively and build a practice of reflecting on race and racism in all the justice work they do. In this session we will reflect on our own experiences with race and racism, unpack how racism operates as a root cause of injustice and an obstacle to building an equitable society locally and internationally, and practice race analysis across issue work in the progressive movement.  Structural racism is one of the root causes of injustice in our world. The modern social structures that perpetuate injustice were built before people of color were considered human beings, and were established to benefit landowning white men. If we are to build a more just, human society grounded in the worth of all human beings we must address structural racism in all that we do. Presenters: Maria Fitzsimmons, Senior Trainer, National People’s Action

Workshop: Food Insecurity: Building Support for the Programs That Are Defeating Hunger in NH

LeticiaA look at hunger in our state and the Federal, State and Local programs that are in place to help end it. We’ll review legislation that helps and hinders the movement to end food insecurity. Knowing what the problem is and exchanging ideas that help end it are key to ensuring that NH citizens have what they need to live healthy, safe, and productive lives. Public policy and perception play a key role in strengthening those programs and initiatives. Presenter: MaryLou Beaver – State Director of Every Child Matters in NH and the Chair of the NH Family Assistance Advisory Council

Workshop: Voting Rights Matter:  The Landscape & Need to Create a System That Works for All

America Votes-New Hampshire, along with Rep. Marcia Moody, will discuss voting rights and election administration landscape nationally and a path to creating a more inclusive system in New Hampshire.  This session will examine recent trends in state based rollbacks and important court precedent, and then move into case studies of other states that have moved progressive election reform packages. There are many stakeholders in this work including the state legislature, secretary of state, town clerks and moderators who need to be engaged around a long term plan for change.  The session will wrap up with specific steps activists and allied organizations can take to help develop and promote this work at home and in Concord. Presenters: Paula Hodges, State Director of America Votes; Michael O’Brien, Political and Field Director of America Votes; Hon. Marcia Moody

Workshop: Looking Back, Looking Forward: A Review of the FY 2016-2017 Budget Debate

This session aims to improve attendees understanding of the key details and themes of the FY 2016-2017 budget, the problems it fails to address and the new ones it creates, and longer-term policies designed to strengthen New Hampshire’s ability to invest in vital public services. New Hampshire’s budget is among the most critical pieces of legislation considered each session, allocating billions of dollars to public priorities such as health care and education and touching the life of every Granite Stater in some fashion. “Looking Back, Looking Forward” will examine the key elements of the FY 2016-2017 budget, its potential consequences, and the root cause of New Hampshire’s ongoing fiscal troubles. Presenter: Jeff McLynch, Executive Director of the New Hampshire Fiscal Policy Institute (NHFPI)

Workshop: Creating Legislative Report Cards

This workshop will help to build the progressive movement by focusing on the performance of NH legislators by the only tool that counts: their voting records. Report cards were invaluable during the 2014 election. This is a great opportunity to involve more progressive people in this project. Presenter: Bill Duncan, founder of Advancing New Hampshire Public Education

Workshop: Using Social Media To Push Your Message

Matt Murray, TrainerDo you use social media but want to take it to the next level? Join two of New Hampshire’s premier progressive bloggers as they teach you how to optimize your website, Facebook page, Twitter account, Tumblr, and more to reach a larger audience and drive a progressive narrative. This workshop will include real-life examples of how NH social media users have repeatedly created national news stories to highlight progressive wins and expose right-wing rhetoric, and how you can do the same. Everything from how to create popular images to pushing a specific meme will be covered, with audience questions in between. Presenters: Matt Murray, NH Labor News @NhlaborNews; Susan Bruce, Susan the Bruce Blogspot @Susanthe

Workshop: Holding Conservative Electeds & Candidates Accountable at the Federal Level (We’re Looking at You, Senator Ayotte and GOP Presidential Field!)

This interactive workshop introduces attendees to accountability actions and the importance of calling out conservative elected officials for not standing with the progressive values and priorities of voters. Learn what People for the American Way and other groups are doing to hold conservative electeds and candidates like U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte and the GOP Presidential field accountable, among other things. Attendees will have the opportunity to take part in a brief accountability action at the end of the session. Presenter: Lindsay Jakows, Political Campaign Consultant for People for the American Way

Workshop: Bird-dog Training

Given New Hampshire traditions of participatory democracy and the special role of the nation’s first Presidential Primary election, New Hampshire voters have an unusual opportunity to interact directly with people who seek public office on the state and federal level. With good preparation, we can use those interactions not only to find out where candidates stand on crucial issues but also to drive the political discourse in the direction of more justice, more peace, and more democracy. “Bird Dogging” is a term that describes techniques to get public officials or candidates to address issues out in the open, for all to see and hear. The purpose of this workshop is to help you hone your birddogging skills while learning about local campaigns that will utilize the tactic over the coming year. In New Hampshire an election is always just around the corner; it’s time to get ready! Presenters: Olivia Zink, Grassroots Engagement Coordinator of American Friends Service Committee’s Governing Under the Influence project; Eric Zulaski, Grassroots Education Coordinator of American Friends Service Committee’s Governing Under the Influence project

Workshop: Fight for $15 Economics Workshop

This 90 minute interactive workshop expands the Fight for $15 frame beyond fast food workers and connects the Fight for $15 to our broader work as a union. We’ll discuss how the economy doesn’t work for us or our communities, gain a shared understanding of how jobs in our country are becoming increasingly low wage and part time, and that to turn the economy around we must lift standards and wages, and discuss how to expand the Fight for $15 beyond fast food worker strikes, to include airport workers, hospital workers, homecare workers, citizens, and demonstrate how it impacts most workers in the country. Presenters: Jeremy Dupuis, State Employee, Fight for $15.00 Committee, and Steward, State Employees Association (SEA, SEIU Local 1984); Judith Brideau, State Employee, Fight for $15.00 Committee, and Board Member, SEA 1984

Workshop: Measuring Democracy: Hard Facts about the State of Representation in New Hampshire

No matter what progressive issue you most care about, you cannot expect to create reform without a responsive government. Right now, candidates have to turn constantly to the same tiny fraction of a percentage of the population for campaign donations. They need that money to exist politically, but it doesn’t come from the population at large. Candidates become completely dependent on these funders, and their decision-making becomes conditioned to please their funders, not their constituents. As long as every politician participates in this same system, becoming indebted to an elite funder class, they will not implement true progressive reforms. What percentage of the population would need to vote for a country to truly be a democracy? Would it take 100%, or is the estimated 15% who voted in New Hampshire’s 2013 local elections sufficient? If only a few thousand donors buy into funding campaigns, whom do those candidates speak for? Over the last several months, Open Democracy has carefully assembled a comprehensive measure of New Hampshire’s civic health in the first-ever Open Democracy Index. The forthcoming Index addresses key progressive issues like voting rights, gender equity, and economic justice by comprehensively examining six dimensions of democratic practice: voting, civic participation, election funding, lobbying, electoral competition, and diversity of representation. To truly invest in a progressive future, we have to first build a government that’s responsive to the all Americans, not just wealthy individuals and corporations. Presenters: Dan Weeks, Executive Director of Open Democracy and Xanni Brown, Communications and Outreach Manager of Open Democracy

Workshop: A Pizza Legislation: Public Engagement and Issue Advocacy

Laurel ReddenOur advocacy workshop will have the group engage in “A Pizza Legislation.” This activity will center around a piece of legislation that has been submitted by a state representative as House Bill 12345. The legislation calls for all providers in the state who serve meals to their clients, to serve pizza 3 days a week for lunch. The group will be split into 6 groups – 3 groups supporting the legislation and 3 groups opposing the legislation. Each group will have a particular task that they must undertake as they advocate for or against the bill: Writing a Letter to the Editor, Visiting their Legislator, Forming a grassroots group of community members. Developing and framing their message, engaging others, including research and data will all be requirements to completing their task. Presenters: MaryLou Beaver, State Director for Every Child Matters in NH, MacKenzie Flessas, Field Director for Every Child Matters in NH

Workshop: Crafting Progressive Messaging for Successful Electoral Campaigns


Several co-facilitators will provide a framework and invite full participation in this Roundtable Discussion designed to shift Electoral Priorities to focus “from the bottom of the ticket up” and to craft succinct messages that Progressive Candidates can utilize to achieve success in their campaigns. Based on our belief that NH voters and their families are more directly affected by who they elect to the State House in Concord than who they send to Washington, we seek to build and strengthen the network of Progressive Candidates who will in turn work to increase the influence of Progressives in NH politics and policies. Presenters: Hon. Sylvia Gale, Hon. Jan Schmidt

Workshop: Move The Money: THIS IS WHY WE CAN’T HAVE NICE THINGS!!!

The United States spends about 45% of the world’s military dollars, and spends more than four times what the next largest spender does on our military.  Pentagon contractors spend big bucks lobbying and funding elections to ensure their contracts; sometimes that means that equipment the Pentagon doesn’t even want get funded to the tune of tens of billions of dollars.  Come learn just how much fat there is to trim from the pentagon budget, and what we could do if we weren’t wasting our tax dollars on pentagon projects that don’t contribute to our safety and security. Advocates working in infrastructure, homelessness, children, poverty, workers rights, social programs, and education all fight for federal dollars; becoming conversant in Pentagon waste helps us all advocate for the big piece of the pie to become more reasonable, leading to the world we are trying to build! Presenter: Will Hopkins, Executive Director for NH Peace Action Education Fund

Workshop: Changing the Political Debate: Bird Dog Tactics in Action

Workshop, OliviaBird dogs with AFSC’s Governing Under the Influence project (GUI) bring the issue of corporate domination over our political process directly to presidential candidates. GUI activists have persistently called out the profit motive of Pentagon contractors and the private prison industry that drives war and incarceration policies. What has this effort accomplished so far? Is bird-dogging an effective tactic in political change? How can we refine our approach in the 6 months remaining before the primary? This presentation will highlight some key encounters with presidential candidates this election cycle and demonstrate how we are changing the way candidates talk about peace and justice. Presenters: Olivia Zink, Grassroots Engagement Coordinator of American Friends Service Committee’s Governing Under the Influence project; Eric Zulaski, Grassroots Education Coordinator of American Friends Service Committee’s Governing Under the Influence project

Workshop: Building a Safe and Sustainable Power System with Offshore Wind

Despite its tiny coastline, NH is in a unique place (both geographically and politically) to take a leadership role in the development of floating offshore wind power in the Gulf of Maine. Thousands of megawatts of power (more than the whole state uses) is available off our shores, and it is more reliable, efficient and environmentally sound than onshore sources. This would involve the construction of hundreds of huge floating wind turbine platforms, towed out to appropriate sites far offshore, moored to the ocean bottom and connected by undersea cables to bring the power onshore. This may sound like science fiction, but the future is now – there are full-scale prototype turbines operating off European shores, and most recently off Fukushima, Japan. A recent NH Legislature study committee concluded that this concept is worth pursuing further, and recommended that Gov. Hassan request a state/federal Task Force as a necessary first step in designating suitable offshore sites, as a dozen other states have already done. A petition to the governor to implement this task force is being circulated around the state, to initiate this multi-year process. This presentation will cover the rationale and basics of offshore wind development, its place in the context of overall NH energy policy and economic development, as well as its potential role in a transition away from our state’s dependence on the military-industrial complex. Presenters: Doug Bogen, Director of the Seacoast Anti-Pollution League

Jackie Cilley

Jackie Cilley

Workshop: A $15 Liveable Wage in NH

A $15 liveable wage in NH – dispelling myths by reviewing the impact of the $15 per hour around the country. An overview of the real impacts that significant increases in minimum wages have had on place like Seattle, WA, a discussion of Rep. Cilley’s proposal this session to increase the minimum wage and competing proposals, and a discussion of strategy going forward. Presenter: State Rep. Jackie Cilley

Workshop: Talk Poverty to Fight Poverty: How to Speak Powerfully on Big Issues AND Causes, Consequences and Solutions to Poverty in NH –Findings from 2014 public opinion research

What is advocacy, why do we do it, and HOW do we do it? Can we really change things? YES! We’ll talk about the landscape of advocacy, explore effective tools and tactics, learn about poverty in the United States, and develop a customizable “laser talk”- a short and compelling talk that can be used in a variety of scenarios, to motivate and educate an audience in less than two minutes. We’ll also learn how to put it all into practice, moving from passive bystanders to change makers. There will be plenty of opportunities to share, role play, and inspire. We have to talk poverty to fight poverty; creating the political will to end poverty. This session will also include a briefing on public opinion research on poverty in New Hampshire. The Investing in Communities Initiative conducted research on public and legislator perception of the level of poverty, as well as causes of poverty and ways to reduce poverty in New Hampshire.  The research was conducted to benefit public policy advocacy groups serving low income and vulnerable people. Presenters: Kristy Martino, U.S. Poverty Grassroots Organizer at RESULTS; Melissa Bernardin, Director of the Investing in Communities Initiative

Workshop: Stand with Women for Better NH Legislation – Civil Rights as it Relates to Pregnancy and Breastfeeding and the Intersection of Transgender and Racial Discrimination

This interactive, fun and hands-on workshop will introduce the Stand with Women platform. NH’s Pregnancy and Breastfeeding proposed legislation, authored and submitted by the presenters, will be examined. Two Federal bills, the Pregnant Worker’s Fairness Act and Support Working Mother’s Act, will also be discussed along with several Sex Discrimination Lawsuits such as the recently won pregnancy discrimination suit at SCOTUS, Young V UPS. Breastfeeding rights and enforcement via the EEOC will be highlighted. Relevant questions will be asked such as: Is it really true, such as it is in the IOWA courts, that since men can breastfeed too, lactation discrimination is not sex discrimination? How does this relate to the transgender lactating community? Why are Black and Latina women breastfeeding at much lower rates than White women in the US? Articles such as, “Why Ferguson Has Everything to Do with Black Breastfeeding Week,” and “Dear White Women, Top 5 Reasons We Need a Black Breastfeeding Week will be discussed. Will the NH government apply for the $250,000 grant to research paid family leave? Lastly, Kate Frederick’s own experiences with sex discrimination and ensuing backlash will be briefly summarized. Presenter: Kate Frederick, Founder of The Rustik Baby Project

Workshop: Why Youth? By Youth

This workshop intended to help older, more experienced community organizers engage with youth organizers effectively. Based on our experiences organizing at the high school and college levels, we will demonstrate how to build solidarity with young people who are already taking action on progressive issues. We will present techniques to approach groups and create lasting, working relationships and also share what issues young people care about currently. This is a dynamic workshop that will incorporate elements of storytelling, role-playing, and more structured presenting. Presenters: Lisa Demaine, Caitlin Lasher, Kelsey Lozier, and Laura Xiao, Fellows with NextGen Climate

Workshop: REAL Retirement Security NOW!

2015 marks the 80th anniversary of Social Security and the 50th anniversaries of Medicare and Medicaid as well as the decennial White House Conference on Aging (WHCOA). This forum and discussion will focus on what real retirement security means to you and how you can help to make sure the President and the White House protect Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and Pensions and ensure ALL Americans enjoy a secure retirement. Presentation to be followed by discussion, and will include how to ask candidates in 2016 the right questions about this issue. Presenters: Lucy Edwards, President of the NH Alliance for Retired Americans; and Jennifer Kenny, Senior Field Organizer for New England for the national Alliance for Retired Americans

Breaking through the Silence Door: The State of Domestic and Sexual Violence in Our Country

YWCA NH is one of 13 crisis services programs in New Hampshire providing crisis service programs in one of the state’s largest and diverse urban areas. Join us for a thought provoking discussion about the troubling trends in domestic and sexual violence in our country and how silence about violence against women, children and men keeps the number of intimate partner and stranger violence on the rise in our nation. This session will think about progressive strategies to address violence in your community and build capacity among survivors and victims to break the cycle of abuse, all amidst a culture that embraces violence both institutionally and structurally. Presenters: Jessica Sugrue, President & CEO, YWCA Manchester; Mariah Cahill, Community Education Advocate, YWCA Manchester

Long Game Planning: The Progressive Roadmap through 2020

This session will review critical steps leading up to the 2020 elections and subsequent census and redistricting process.  Planning incrementally for elections in 2016, 2018 and 2020 will be critical as we prepare for the reapportionment of Congressional and State Legislative maps.   This session will review what we’ve seen in past redistricting attempts, what we should expect in 2020 and how to consider nonpartisan reforms to ensure competitive maps in the future.   The session will also highlight why election modernization and the fight to protect voting rights is critically tied to maintaining progressive power.  Presenters: Mike O’Brien, AV-NH Political & Field Director and Zach Jonas, AV-NH Data Manager

Why We Still Need to Abolish Nuclear Weapons

Think the danger of nuclear war is past?   Think again.  Twenty-five years after the end of the Cold War, the US and Russia still deploy enough nuclear weapons to wreak horrifying damage on humans and nature. Disarmament is stalled and the US and Russia are undertaking massive upgrades to their arsenals. But a new movement to abolish nuclear weapons is fighting worldwide to confront this menace. This workshop is a primer for people who never knew much about nuclear weapons, as well as an update for those whose knowledge is rusty.  We’ll focus on the US and Russia but also look quickly at other nuclear weapons states and possible terrorism by non-state actors. The workshop will conclude with a discussion of local and global organizing for nuclear weapons abolition, drawing links to movements confronting climate change and corporate political power.  You will leave with information about how to get involved. Presenter: Judy Elliott, Lead Volunteer, American Friends Service Committee and NH Peace Action

The State of Our State: How We Can Save the American Dream for New Hampshire’s Working Families

PS 2012New Hampshire families have been working harder and putting in longer hours, yet they are still struggling to make ends meet. While wages are flat, costs have continued to climb, stretching family budgets too thin. With all eyes on the Granite State this election cycle, we need to show the nation that our state puts working families first. The Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy is fighting for smart policies that create an economy that works for New Hampshire’s working families. When families are able to provide for themselves and trust that their children are well cared for, they are more likely to stay in the workforce, are more productive in their jobs, and more loyal to their employer. We are partnering with organizations, business owners and hard working families across the state to encourage our elected officials to support policies that will build a family-friendly economy.  Learn compelling data and testimonials from real Granite Staters on how our current system isn’t working, as well as our vision to create a family-friendly future. Presenter: Dustin Branch & Sarah Sadowski, NH Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy; Sen. Dan Feltes (D-Concord)

Raise the Wage: Fight for $15

Find out what is happening with the Fight for $15 in New Hampshire.  Presentation will include an overview of wages in New Hampshire, including data on who in our state earns less than $15 per hour.  Hear from Manchester and Nashua Fast Food workers involved in the Fight for 15 and a Union who have gone out on strike for higher wages. Find out how you can get involved in supporting low wage workers and the campaign to raise the state’s minimum wage. Presenters: Sarah Jane Knoy, Executive Director Granite State Organizing Project; Wesley McEnany, Lead Organizer Fight For $15; Local Leaders from the Fight for $15 Campaign

A Deeper Look At the Islamic State

There seems to be a severe lack of significant thought by federal politicians around what our response to the Islamic State should be; in particular from the Presidential Primary candidates who were vying to be the decision-maker who will have to see us through this crisis.  Here in New Hampshire we heard a uniform message, “As President, I will crush ISIS!” This conclusion about how to deal with ISIS would perhaps begin to shift if we asked a few pointed questions. Iraq War Veteran and Director of NH Peace Action Will Hopkins will ask those questions in this workshop and suggest a more complex and nuanced approach to dealing with the Islamic State.  Hopkins bases his work on the work of Phyllis Bennis, Generals David Patreaus and James Amos, and Win Without War. Presenter: Will Hopkins, Executive Director, NH Peace Action

Leverage Point: How State, County, and Local Budgets Form

Public budgets are where we fund some of our most important shared priorities. In New Hampshire, like many other places, advocacy around those priorities needs to start long before the final roll call vote. Learn the ins and outs of the New Hampshire state, county, and local budget processes and the influence points where you can help shape what our budgets look like here in New Hampshire. Presenters: Jeff McLynch, Executive Director, NH Fiscal Policy Institute; Brian Hawkins, Government Relations Coordinator, State Employees Association, SEIU Local 1984; Sara Pereschino, Hopkinton Selectwoman

Advancing Health & Equity in NH

Health inequities – the difference in health status, outcomes, and care services for various population groups in our state – are unnecessary, avoidable, and unjust.  Come discuss healthy inequity in New Hampshire, followed by a dive into how health is produced in our communities.  We will discuss the impact of health inequities on all of us, including: evidence of health inequities in New Hampshire; how health disparities impact Granite Staters; how health is produced in our communities; and what we can do to advance health equity by making changes to policies, systems and environments. We will specifically look at state-level bills that went before our legislature this year, viewing them from an equity frame. Presenters: Rebecca Sky, Health & Equity Partnership Project Director, Foundation for Healthy Communities; Dottie Morris, Chief Officer of Diversity and Multiculturalism, Keene State College

Economic Security – A Discussion of Current Legislation & How It Impacts Granite State Families

Child poverty in the Granite State increased by 75% between 2007 and 2013. Too many New Hampshire families are struggling to meet their basic needs. Two study committees will be meeting this summer in Concord that will directly impact children and their families. And in Washington, legislation to increase the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour could raise workers in New Hampshire out of poverty but this legislation has stalled. Join us for information and a discussion about Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards, car title loans, and living on the minimum wage. Presenters: MaryLou Beaver, New England Director, Every Child Matters in NH; MacKenzie Flessas, Field Director, Every Child Matters in NH; Sarah Mattson, Policy Director, NH Legal Assistance

Workshop: LGBT Community – Where We Stand and How to Move Forward
States across the country are recognizing marriage equality. Communities in New Hampshire and elsewhere are advancing equal rights for transgender people. This workshop will outline the current status of the LGBT community in New Hampshire and the nation and the work that lies ahead. Presenters: Honorable Mo Baxley, former Executive Director of N.H. Freedom to Marry; Jamie Capach, former Steering Committee member of TransGender New Hampshire

The Future of Energy and Our Environment

This workshop will focus on what we can do to support a clean energy future for New Hampshire by highlighting three major campaigns underway. The first section will focus on the newly presented carbon rules for existing power plants from the Environmental Protection Agency, outlining what the reductions nationwide will do and expectations for climate action at the existing power plants in NH. The second section will highlight the IBEW clean energy apprenticeship program that is training workers in green energy technology and partnering with environmentalists to build a workforce for the 21st century. The third section will provide an update on wind energy in New Hampshire and nationally. Presenters: Cathy Corkery, State Club Director, NH Sierra Club; Huck Montgomery, Special Projects for IBEW Local 490; Moderator: Karen Kelly, NH Citizens Alliance and former Environmental Organizer

“Who Am I Going To Be?” African Youth Building New Lives in NH

What challenges do you think you would face if you suddenly found yourself starting over in a new culture?  What in your cultural heritage could you draw on for strength in challenging circumstances? The film “Who Am I Going To Be?” explores the constellation of challenges that African youth face as they build new lives in New Hampshire.  Learning to navigate school and community expectations, adjusting to shifting family roles, and coping with the aftermath of conflict and trauma are parts of their path.  They are made to feel “other” at school. They naturally learn English faster than their parents, ushering in issues of respect, relationship, and family authority. This film, produced in 2014 in New Hampshire, explores the formation of identity and belonging among teens who have immigrated to New Hampshire, and asks viewers to think about their own cultural identities, perspectives, and prerogatives. Presenter: Lynn Clowes, Community Advocate and Cultural Competencies Trainer

The High Cost of Privatization

Join us for an in-depth presentation and robust discussion on the broad implications of privatizing public services in New Hampshire and the United States. From the impact on worker protections and benefits, to lessened transparency and accountability for government funds, we will discuss the short and long term implications for the progressive movement in the age of privatization. Presenters: Diana Lacey, President, State Employees Association, SEIU Local 1984; Janice Kelble, Legislative Director, NH Postal Workers Union

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