VOICES FROM THE 40th: Whatcom County Democratic Women

By Denise Marshall / Whatcom County Democratic Women Chair

I’m still fired up by our march on January 21 standing up for women’s rights and against Donald Trump’s damaging rhetoric and actions.  
Now we must take this energy and work every single day to wake up the consciousness of those around us to the serious threat that the GOP and Trump’s agenda poses to our country. Together, our voices are powerful! A single progressive voice that speaks to the truth that Women’s Rights Are Human Rights. That is who the Whatcom County Democratic Women are–we march, we fight, we stand up–not a single one of us can afford to sit on the sidelines.
You might be saying why belong to the Whatcom County Democratic Women? Although we are not nonpartisan, we welcome every voice that agrees that Women’s Rights Are Human Rights regardless of political affiliation. We may not always agree (heck we Democrats don’t even agree with each other), but there are so many issues that we can find common ground so we can work together.
Just like you, I am inundated with email and social media postings every day. It’s difficult to sort through all the calls to action–-Are they real? Are they based on fact? Where should I direct my energy that makes the most impact? That is where the Whatcom Democratic Women differ: We are focused on fact-based issues that affect our families–-our local economy, jobs, the environmentour candidates that run for office, immigration, women’s issues and health care. Our organization is set up to immediately respond to any issue, threat, or attack that the GOP or Trump perpetrates against our families and our progressive values. 
Our organization holds our general luncheon meeting once every quarter along with eight community-themed activism programs this year. Our focus is “My Family, Your Family, Our Family." Each program will also involve a call to action either locally, state, or nationally. An engaged community is a proactive community.
Besides our general meeting this month, we have two program events scheduled: February 23 we have the honor of having Linda McCarthy from Planned Parenthood speak to "Responding to the attacks on Women's Health Care." On February 25, we have the honor of having Former Seattle city councilmember Nick Licata speak to Becoming a Citizen through citizen empowerment gets organized, congregate power, and master the tactics for change.
We are currently working on our program for March. However, in addition to our March program,  we will be honoring International Women’s Day on March 8 with an evening showing of Equal Means Equal. We will also have a panel of speakers to Women’s Rights Are Human Rights. (Our programs are held either in the evening or on a weekend day).
On April 1, we will be holding a “Ready to Run: Whatcom & Skagit County” training to engage women, POC, LGBT, young people to consider running for office. We are also holding our annual brunch forum on April 8 (speaker TBD). These are just some highlights of things to come. Our goal is to get back to the grassroots activism that the Whatcom County Democratic Women was originally founded.  
Our next general meeting is 11:30 A.M. February 9 at NYP Grill on State Street (there is onsite parking).

Hope to see you there.

 In solidarity,

Denise Marshall