Rita Haggardt Award for Region 6

2019 Rita Haggardt Award
Left to Right: IDWC Member Alan Humphries, Rita Haggardt, and IDWC Region 6 Director Linda Leeuwrik

The inaugural Rita Haggardt Award was presented on July 25, 2019, in Pocatello, Idaho at the joint Bannock County Democrats and IDWC summer picnic fundraiser. This award is presented to the woman who best embodies the Democratic values and ideals. It will be presented to a woman in Region 6 on a semi-annual basis.

This year’s award winner is the lovely Rita Haggardt herself, who is the perfect example of a servant’s heart regardless and a tireless volunteer for the overlooked members of our society. Rita is an amazing woman has set a very high bar for future awardees! She is a former school teacher who says that she was a Democrat at birth. Her volunteer efforts show that she is determined to improve her community one person at a time. For example, she volunteers with many organizations including the United Way, Rotary, Zonta, and My Brother’s Kitchen. She is one of the favorite members of the Idaho Democratic Women’s Caucus. 

BCD & IDWC Summer Picnic 2019

2019 picnic

Join the Bannock County Democrats and the Idaho Democratic Women’s Caucus for the 2019 annual joint fundraising summer picnic on Thursday, July 25th from 6 to 10 p.m. at Lower Ross Park in Pocatello. 

Dinner will be a smoked meat competition featuring local unions including the IBEW, Pocatello Firefighters, and the Building Trades/Ironworkers, and the fabulous Thanks a Brunch food truck. We are planning on having great live music from a terrific local performer. We will also have sides, and dessert plus beer will be available for purchase. Come support both local women candidates and your favorite Democratic county party as we prepare for the upcoming elections.

Tickets are $25/adults, $10/kids over six including students, and tickets are free for kids under six. Tickets can be purchased in person or at Eventbrite. Come have some fun at the picnic and help support the IDWC!

NFDW Action Alert on USWNST and Equal Pay

NFDW members are joining the celebration of the phenomenal fourth World Cup win by the United States Women’s National Soccer Team (USWNST) and their fight for equal pay.

            Previously, five players filed a wage-discrimination action against the U.S. Soccer Federation with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission because women soccer players are paid 89% of what the men receive. In April 2017, it was reported,  “a new collective bargaining agreement, or CBA, with the U.S. Soccer Federation had been made. The agreement stated that the players would have increased base pay and improved match bonuses. These changes could increase their previous pay from $200,000 to $300,000. This 2017 CBA, however, does not guarantee the women’s team equal pay with the men’s national team. The CBA’s five-year term, through 2021, ensured that the next negotiation would not become an issue for the team in its next major competitions.  Also, the U.S. Soccer Federation had agreed to pay the players for two years’ worth of unequal per-diem payments.

On March 8, 2019, all 28 members of the U.S. team filed a gender discrimination lawsuit against the United States Soccer Federation. The lawsuit, filed in the United States District Court in Los Angeles, accused the Federation of ‘institutional gender discrimination.’  The lawsuit claims that the discrimination affects not only the amount the players are paid, but also their playing, training, and travel conditions.”

This discrimination is reflective of unequal pay in the U.S. that continues to hold women, outside of soccer, who currently receive 80 cents on each dollar of what men are paid.  Women of color receive even less.  According to the U.S. Labor Department, at this rate, it will be 2059 before women reach pay parity.    

NFDW is calling on all members to join the fight of the USWNST and all women to receive equal pay for equal work.  When President Donald Trump signed an executive order to end President Barack Obama’s Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, all women were negatively impacted.  The women’s soccer team has re-ignited a challenge to this systemic problem of women not receiving equal pay.  NFDW is calling on Congress to end the arcane practice of women not being paid equally for the work that they perform.   

NFDW Action Alert on Border Crisis

National Federation of Democratic Women President Cindy Jenks has issued the following statement about the border crisis:

            “It is time for all citizens to hold Donald Trump and his administration accountable for the deplorable, inhumane, and dangerous conditions that have been inflicted on the children that are being held at the border.  President Trump has also contributed to the perilous situation of asylum seekers who left their countries crossing the U.S. Border that divides our country from Mexico.

            The press, child advocates, and members of Congress have reported seeing the children in squalid conditions, including wearing dirty clothes and without access to soap, toothbrushes, or toothpaste.  Young children were being given the responsibility of providing care for toddlers that have been brought into the complex.  The reports also say that the children look malnourished, and act depressed and traumatized. 

            Within this last year, seven children have died while in the custody of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.  No child deaths were reported during the previous decade.  Nurses have reported that border agents are ignoring when a child is sick.  

            The buck stops on President Trump’s desk and he should be held accountable for this unacceptable situation.  NFDW members should call their congressional representatives and their local media outlets to voice opposition to this situation.”