There’s only one word that can adequately describe the 2011 CPEDV/CALCASA Legislative Action Day: SUCCESS!
The California Coalition Against Sexual Assault and the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence teamed up for the first time to organize the Legislative Action Day. Bringing together nearly 200 enthusiastic participants from domestic violence shelters, rape crisis centers, and youth leaders to converge on the State Capitol and raise awareness about policy and budget priorities. Legislators and staff were informed of the importance of Calworks, the Restitution Fund, rape kits, teen dating violence, and a host of other issues facing everyday Californians.
The on-the-ground messages and stories shared by advocates and youth educated legislators on the essential services provided to thousands of survivors of sexual and domestic violence.
And finally, we welcomed CALCASA’s new Executive Director Sandra Henriquez and recognized our 2011 Extraordinary Advocates in Senator Mark Leno and Ellen Corbett, and Assembly Member Anthony Portantino for their ongoing commitment to survivors.
Can you believe all of that activity occurred in only two days? Participants left with the knowledge that they too can make a difference in how policymakers view services in their local communities. Advocates and youth leaders returned to their homes having received training on how to take action on specific policies and having made valuable contact with legislators and staff.
It might be a little too early to say this, but we’re looking forward to 2012!