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L’Italien Hosting Political Engagement Forum In Merrimack Valley With Statewide Advocacy Groups, Dem Party Chair

May 11, 2017 02:52PM ● By Theresa Gilman

State Sen. Barbara L'Italien is sworn in. (Barbara L'Italien Facebook page)

(Editor's Note: the following information was provided by the Office of State Senator Barbara L’Italien.)

LAWRENCE: State Senator Barbara L’Italien (D-Andover) is hosting a forum to bring together local and statewide advocacy groups with citizens looking to get better involved in local progressive and Democratic activism in the Merrimack Valley. The forum is titled “Let’s Get Organized! Building a Grassroots Coalition of Activists in the Merrimack Valley” and will be hosted from 9-12pm at the Reliefs In on Saturday, May 13th. This is the first in a series of “Let’s Get Organized!” events being hosted by Senator Barbara L’Italien.

“Since November, numerous constituents have reached out to share their concerns about the results of the 2016 national election and express interest in becoming more engaged in political activism and advocacy,” said L’Italien. “In order to address the concerns of these many progressive constituents, we’re bringing statewide advocacy organizations representing hot-button issues right to the Merrimack Valley. All are welcome.”

The program will include a welcome by Senator L’Italien and Massachusetts Democratic Party chair Gus Bickford, followed by breakout sessions that will explore important work going on in Massachusetts and the Merrimack Valley around specific subject areas. Participating organizations include: Planned Parenthood, Massachusetts Teachers Association, Environmental League of Massachusetts, Raise Up MA, and Mass Alliance. More groups are expected to address the opioid epidemic, LGBT issues, and others.  

“This is an exciting opportunity to jump in and join the surge of activism and political engagement we’ve seen since the election, become better connected to the work being done on various issues both locally and statewide, and network with other activists in the area” continued L’Italien. “This initial forum is just a starting point - our goal is to foster relationships that can continue this work. We’re trying to build a strong coalition of folks who are passionate about progressive causes, who are activated to work on these issues.”

Forum Details:
The event will begin with a brief speaking program followed by three half-hour breakout sessions.  During each breakout session, participants will have the choice of attending one of three different presentations from statewide organizations, covering nine topics total: Immigration, Combating the Opioid Epidemic, Labor/Economic Justice, Education, Environment, LGBTQ Rights, Running for Office, Women’s Empowerment, and Criminal Justice Reform.

Presenting organizations will moderate discussion and emphasize ways that attendees can take concrete actions to organize their own communities and volunteer in the Merrimack Valley to help further these causes.

Let’s Get Organized! Building a Grassroots Coalition of Activists in the Merrimack Valley
Saturday, May 13, 9:00am-12:30am
Relief’s In, 1 Market Street, Lawrence, MA
Breakfast provided

Contact: Emma Friend, Communications and Legislative Aide
(617) 722-1612 ext. 1671 or [email protected]

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