Events for December 2022

Advocacy update October 11, 2022

Advocacy update October 11, 2022 150 150 Episcopalians in Connection
Voter registration deadline today

Oct. 11 Is the deadline for registering or updating your registration as an Ohio voter. You can do it online if you have an Ohio ID and social security number.  If you don’t have the required IDs, you can download a paper form and take it your county board of election by 9 pm tonight. Early voting begins tomorrow.

Ohio has a Safe at Home confidential voter registration program for victims of domestic violence, stalking, human trafficking, rape, or sexual battery. Early in-person voting begins tomorrow at Ohio’s county Boards of Election.

Training for Poll and Social Media Monitors

The Ohio Voter Rights Coalition asks your help in recruiting volunteers for the Ohio Election Protection Program, a non-partisan initiative to tackle problems like misinformation and voter intimidation. Read the Volunteer Opportunities descriptions found on the website or contact courtney@ohvoice.org. The Voter Protection Program has a hotline you can use to report any concerns about voting conditions during early voting or Election Day: 866-Our Vote.

“They have a good relationship with the Ohio Secretary of State’s office, and have attorneys available if needed,” notes Cathedral parishioner Elizabeth Brown, a past president of the League of Women Voters of the Cincinnati Area.

Here are registration links for OVRC’s upcoming training sessions:

  • Election Day Poll Monitor Training – October 27 at 6 pm. RSVP
  • Social Media Monitor Training – Wednesdays and Thursdays at 7 pm. RSVP
Baldwin Wallace releases Pulse Poll of Ohio voters’ views

Professor Lauren Copeland conducted a survey of registered voters to see if bills passing or advancing in the Ohio Legislature fit voters’ views. The Ohio Legislature has passed or is considering a number of bills on gun rights, how the history of race should be taught in our schools, abortion, and energy policy that oppose what the survey says the majority of Ohio voters want. Here are some of the overall findings.

  • 75.9% support teaching about the history of race and racism in the US (p. 26)
  • 59.1% support amending our constitution to make abortion a fundamental right in Ohio (p. 36), but there’s a wide variation in views on how this right should be limited.
  • 60.7% agree that restricting abortion is a form of discrimination against women (p. 37)
  • 59.6% oppose permitless conceal-carry for gun owners over 21 (p. 38)
  • 78.8% support raising the minimum age to buy an AR-15 semi-automatic weapon to 21 (p. 39)
  • 62.3% support limiting magazine capacity (p.42)
  • 75.3% support red flag laws (p. 43)
  • 75.5% support expanding background checks for gun purchasers aged 18-21 (p. 41)
  • 52.8% support allowing teachers to carry guns in schools (p. 44), which the legislature made far easier this year.
  • 65.3% think human activity including burning fossil fuels contributes to climate change (p.46)
  • 68% support a tax on corporations’ carbon emissions (p. 48)
  • 71.1% support tougher restrictions on power plant emissions (p. 50)

You can also read how views vary by party, gender, age, race, gun ownership, ideology, and residence in urban, suburban, or rural areas. For example, 56.4% of rural voters support a constitutional right to abortion in Ohio. The survey also includes voter opinions of Ohio’s gubernatorial and senate candidates Mike DeWine, Nan Whaley, J.D. Vance, and Tim Ryan.

EPPN urges advocacy for DACA recipients

On Oct. 5, a federal circuit court ruled the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy unlawful, though it allowed current DACA recipients to keep their status. The decision  referred the case back to the district court. The Episcopal Public Policy Network offers a link to ask your members of Congress to provide permanent protections for DACA recipients. It also published the Episcopal Church statement on the 5th Circuit ruling on DACA , citing the Church’s longstanding call for pathway to citizenship for all undocumented people who came to the United States as children.

Funding Appalachia’s future

If you live in Appalachian Ohio, advocate for guidelines to ensure new Ohio and federal grants work together to build a fair and sustainable economy for the region. The Ohio Legislature passed HB 377 to create the Appalachian Community Grant program to allocate $500 million of federal American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) dollars to support “sustainable, transformative” projects across Ohio’s 32 Appalachian counties. The state will prioritize infrastructure such as main street revitalization, workforce training, and community-based health care including tackling the opioid crisis.

Amanda Woodrum of Policy Matters Ohio just published a blog post recommending that we advocate with the Ohio Department of Development for funding criteria that match and leverage other major federal grants and incentives under the Infrastructure Bill and Inflation Reduction Act “to build a 21st century sustainable Appalachia and shared prosperity in the region,” including good jobs that don’t depend on fossil fuels.

“Using state grants to help draw down federal funds can help make a project ‘economically sustainable,’” Woodrum writes. “Encouraging projects that promote good-paying jobs while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and building career pathways for residents living in high-poverty areas can help make a project ‘transformative.’

“Another ‘transformative’ priority for the program would be to encourage the redevelopment of shuttered coal plants and former steel facilities into environmentally friendly industrial parks making the sustainable products of the future—such as battery technology for electric vehicles and renewable energy storage, bio-based alternatives for single-use plastics, and eco-bricks for green building purposes made from the fly ash in coal waste fields. Doing so would help create jobs equivalent to those lost from the decline in the coal industry while promoting local wealth creation within the region rather than reliance on absentee corporations in the extractive industries.

“I suspect Gov. DeWine’s Ohio Department of Development is now mulling over similar program requirements and scoring criteria. Let’s let them know that the people of Ohio want them,” she concludes.

Email me if you’d like to help form a faith-based task force to work on this.

Advocacy briefings are compiled by Ariel Miller, a longtime community advocate and member of Ascension & Holy Trinity, Wyoming. Connect with her at arielmillerwriter@gmail.com