Board Meeting – Minutes February 2, 2014

Chippewa Valley Civil Liberties Union

Board Meeting Minutes for February 2, 2014

Herrick and Hart Law Office, 116 Grand Ave., Eau Claire

Present: Myron Buchholz, Shu Cheng, Ann Heywood (recording), Mildred Larson, David Rice, Sara Thielen, Stephanie Turner (presiding), Paul Wagner

Absent: Anna Lane, Alida Markgraf

  1. Stephanie called the meeting to order at 6:30.
  2. David reported no transactions since our last meeting.  A check sent for printing for the annual newsletter is still not cashed.  Our balance is $5.01 in savings and $1403.63 in checking.
  3. The minutes from the December 8 meeting were approved after noting several spelling changes and minor editing.
  4. Ann reported news from the February 1 state board meeting.  Chris Ahmuty gave a report on the coordination of National and Affiliate ACLU activity.  A written copy will be sent to all board members.  Chapter Guideline revisions have been finalized.  Every year the ACLU Executive Committee will review the activities of each chapter and report to the state board.  An award for chapter of the year will be granted.  An updated copy of the Chapter Guidelines will be sent to each board member.  Ann talked with Emilio de Torre about coming to Eau Claire to give presentations in the high schools and perhaps other public venues.   Emilio has done workshops on students’ “Bill of Rights” at various schools, and that format might work here too.  Ann will discuss the possibilities further with Emilio.  The CVCLU board is very interested in making this happen this spring.  A committee, including Myron, Chu, and Ann, will work on it when more information is available.  Ann updated news on the progress of the ACLU court case against the Wisconsin photo ID law, which has gone to trial and had post trial briefs.  Judge Adelman will issue a decision whenever he is ready.  Ann reported that there will be an important ACLU press conference on Monday.  Board members are encouraged to check the state website (aclu-wi.org), make sure they are signed up for state alerts, and use other ACLU social media contacts including Facebook.com/groups/ACLUSA.
  5. Stephanie has contacted Rep. Ron Kind’s office several times and by several methods to arrange a meeting between the CVCLU and Kind concerning the Electronic Communications Privacy Act and the USA Freedom Act.  A group of two or three board members will meet with Kind when the opportunity is settled.  Stephanie will forward background material to those who wish to study the issues.
  6. Discussion about high school outreach:  Sara talked with Cheryl Thiede about whether anti-LGBT issues exist at North High School.  Cheryl will look into the matter and get back to Sara.  Stephanie has talked to Chris Jorgenson about the UW-EC interns who will be working at North this semester and consider coordinating their efforts with our interest in a Bill of Rights or other rights-oriented student workshop as well as help us find a suitable student to serve on our CVCLU board next year.
  7. Old Business.  Stephanie asked Chris about the upcoming Fireball.  Stephanie has asked Sarah Karon, state Communications Director, to send out an email to our members about that event.

Paul asks that our meeting with Ron Kind include our concerns about NSA surveillance.

David will contact John Manydeeds and Virginia Wolf about the city’s Affirmative Action Committee, of which they are members, and ask them to attend our next meeting.  David added an aside that he noted one day recently he saw a large group of men applying for law officer positions:  all men, no people of color, no Hmong among them.

  1. New Business:  Mildred noted that Polk County is now among several other counties in Wisconsin that have gone “English only.”

Ann asked about investigating the participation and impact of voucher schools in our area.  Sara suggested a public schools promotional “fair” or other activity to help counter the voucher appeal.  Ann felt that activity is somewhat outside our civil liberties mission.

Stephanie reported on a request for help from a woman who felt she had been detained and searched inappropriately by police.  She referred the woman to David who discussed the problem with the woman.  No follow-up at this time.

Mildred brought up several cases from around the country about problems for transgender students.   Does Eau Claire have any policy to handle transgender students’ needs when that situation arises?

  1. The next regular meeting will be March 30 at 6:30 at the Herrick and Hart Law Office.  A special meeting to work out plans for an Emilio de Torre visit will be scheduled when appropriate.

10.  The meeting adjourned at 7:30.

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