High school student essay contest to attend March for Our Lives in Washington, DC


Thanks to the generous support of community members and members of El Dorado Progressives there is now an opportunity for El Dorado County high school students who are committed to the cause of ending gun violence and mass shooting in our schools to attend the 3/24 March for our Lives in Washington, DC.

To be considered for this trip, students must complete and return this application and submit a 300-word essay no later than March 16, 2018. This contest is open to high school students of Union Mine, El Dorado, Ponderosa, Oak Ridge, Virtual Academy, and High School aged students of El Dorado County Charter Schools (CCP, CUP, and CCA).  The selection committee will select the best essays and will notify qualifying students on 3/19/18 if they have been selected.

The application form can be found HERE.  

All essays and applications must be sent to: eldoradoprogressives@gmail.com with the subject line “March for Our Lives.”

All donations to EDP though March 19 will support the students' trip. To donate for the trip, click here

EDP General Meeting: Party Politics and Democracy in the Age of Money

At the March 11 meeting, we'll delve into the political process with presentations from political insiders and experts!

Have you ever wondered how the local and state Democratic Party works? Want to learn about delegates, clubs, and candidates? Michael Saunders will give us a quick view into the inner workings of one of the political parties.

And if you ever wondered what we can do to get money out of politics, in the second half of our meeting Move to Amend's Dawn Wolfson (Sacramento Affiliate) and Keyan Bliss (National Leadership Team) will show us the way.  


From Move to Amend: As Progressives, we are all aware of the corrupting influence of large amounts of money on our political process. Move to Amend is the only organization that is fighting this corruption on two fronts. Our proposed Constitutional amendment will not only eliminate the legal fiction that money is equivalent to first amendment protected free speech, but also the absurd notion that corporations are entitled to the same constitutional rights as human beings. We will be talking about how these things came to be, and how they have been used to subvert the democratic process and promote a corporate agenda over the needs of the majority of the people here in the United States.

Lakota Waldorf School Support Workgroup


Members of EDP who were inspired by the events of Standing Rock in 2016-2017 have begun work on a project to help students at the Lakota Waldorf School in South Dakota connect with their culture through participation in PowWow events. The school has a strong commitment to teaching the native language and culture to their students and has been bringing the students, grade 1 through 6, to local powwows. Many of the students do not have appropriate dance regalia and this project, begun by Heidi Mayerhofer and now supported by James Marquez and the Foothill Native Community, will be creating regalia for 12 students. We have raised approximately $2,400 towards our goal of $3,000. We thank the Shingle Springs Rancheria for their generous $1,000 donation as well as the many other people who have made heartfelt and generous donations. If you wish to contribute, please make checks payable to the Foothill Indian Education Alliance and mail to P.O. Box 1418, El Dorado, CA 95623. If you are a seamstress and would like to participate in the creation of the regalia, please call 530-417-2965.

Heidi Mayerhofer 

Health Care and Birth Control Workgroup

Health Care

The last EDP General Meeting topic was on "Health Care at the Tipping Point" and it received positive feedback from those attending. Our feedback survey found that 25% of people completing the survey had changed their minds from unsure about single payer to supporting single payer.

We are planning more presentations and are recruiting people to sponsor house parties in order to stimulate more community conversations about health care as a right and single payer as the best option to reduce costs and improve outcomes. We know this is a marathon and not a sprint. Hope you can join with us this year to help educate our community about our wasteful health care system and the special interests that are preventing reform.

Please let us know if there are any community groups that you are part of that could have our presentation and/or if you would be willing to sponsor a house party program with family, friends and neighbors.

We have a presentation scheduled for June 15th with the Sierra Renaissance Society. At House Parties we will provide a short film and provide someone to summarize what is going on in California and answer questions. Email Maureen Dion-Perry if you can help us schedule events - dionperry@att.net.

And how will we pay for Health Care for All in California, you may ask? The short answer is "It's complicated." The details are still being worked out, but it could be something like the following two strategies: 

  • a 6.5% Employer Payroll Tax for those with receipts over $2 million (so it would exclude small businesses). In exchange, business would no longer have to provide health insurance to employees.
  • an Individual Health Care Premium Tax of 2.4% on Non-Essential purchases (excluding housing, utilities, food, and probably other things). 

Under this plan, individuals would no longer have to pay health insurance premiums, deductibles, and co-pays and everyone would receive comprehensive health care, dental and vision benefits.

The next meeting of the Health Care Work Group will be on April 9, 2017, from 6 - 8:30 pm. The first half hour is socializing and potluck snacks, with the meeting from 6:30 - 8:30.

We will be meeting at EDCOE, El Dorado County Office of Education, at the intersection of Missouri Flat and Green Valley Rds, Building B. Come join a fun and committed group of health care advocates.

Maureen Dion-Perry

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Birth Control Information and Resources

Our Birth Control Information and Resources Wallet Card, born out of a request from a teen group - for more information on access to local reproductive health, is now on its third iteration.

We created this handy tri-fold card that can be carried in a wallet, with important local contacts and mobile phone apps. Although we chose to make the card attractive to teens with their Internet phones, the information is valuable to parents and educators as well. 

To date, we have distributed over 3,000 of the original English-language version to more than 30 agencies and organizations on the "Western Slopes".

The second edition—in Spanish—is complete and at the printers.


Most recently, we have collaborated with a South Lake Tahoe community group of service providers, to put together a version of the Wallet Card spotlighting the birth control resources in their area. This "Lake Tahoe" version is in final stages of production.

Our thanks to Marshall Hospital and Barton Hospital for their support in providing FamilyPACT services to teens and low-income adults, and to the El Dorado County Public Health Nursing for their collaboration on this project.

Visit www.edphealthcare.org/wallet-card and www.edphealthcare.org/tarjeta-de-cartera to see pictures of the Wallet Cards and read our guide to the online resources listed on the card. There is great information on sexuality and reproductive health for parents, teens, and educators. 

Margaret Madams 

VoteSmart Workgroup

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The VoteSmart workgroup is going to be focusing on Voter Registration in March. We are partnering with the United Democrats in Placerville in an effort to get all eligible voters in California Congressional District 4 registered and out to vote. 

There will be a Voter Registration Training and meeting on Tuesday, March 6, at 5:30 at Raley’s Event Center (located behind the dairy case). The short instructional training will be conducted by Pat Wendt of Sierra Forward (the umbrella group coordinating the “Retire McClintock” campaign). Future trainings will be held in March and April, dates TBD. 

Mary Elliott-Klemm, John Savage, and Marian Washburn will be there to coordinate future dates and locations for participants.

Not only is voter registration a necessity to defeat McClintock, but it is a very affirming activity. It is even more enjoyable if people work in pairs. So, come to the workshop, bring a friend, and meet the public as an important first step to debating Tom McClintock.

South County Citizens for Public Lands

The South County Citizens for Public Lands group is meeting regularly and working on content for our webpage. We plan to have sections on information, actions we can take, and a “good news” section. We will focus on mostly local matters with some broader issues included. We are inviting folks to join a small, dedicated group of fellow progressives who care about our environment. 

Patty Wilson


Social Organizing Workgroup


This spring the Social Organizing Workgroup is working on informal, purely social and highly localized gatherings for EDP members and prospective members get to know each other on a personal level. We hope these gatherings will help reduce feelings of isolation for progressives living in these highly “red” communities, acquaint neighbors and friends with the progressive viewpoint and identify shared concerns, and promote progressives as a positive, friendly, and helpful presence in the community. 

We are currently seeking “Neighborhood Captains” to help coordinate get-to-know-you and other social gatherings at the neighborhood level either in their own homes, in other volunteers’ homes, or at local eateries or other venues. If you're interested in helping out, please contact Kristy McKay at EDPSocial@tegnelink.com


News from our South County Citizens for Public Lands workgroup.

Great detailed report from the Center for Biological Diversity, Tom McClintock is the sponsor of two bills, and the co-sponsor of many. Our workgroup, South County Citizens for Public Lands, will be publishing actions and updates to relevant environmental legislation on our soon to be published page on the EDP website. Come visit/join us!

Read the report here http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/programs/public_lands/pdfs/Under-Seige.PDF

EDP Newsletter Feb. 2018

New Work Group

Civil Rights Now Work Group

This group was formed in January, spurred by strong negative responses to a racist opinion column in the Mountain Democrat. After meeting and laying out actions to take, the group decided to form the work group to support education in EDC about diversity, white privilege, to help businesses welcome tourists of all backgrounds, and more. So far the group has participated in a meeting with the staff of the Mountain Democrat, held weekly picketing near the MD offices, and mounted a march down Placerville Drive to the MD offices. In addition, the members are working to remove racial exclusions from CCRs and are dealing with an incident between two local high schools.


Here is just some of what our many work groups accomplished in 2017.

(Apologies if a group has been omitted.)

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Protest Art/Sign Making Work Group

Over 100 signs made and collected for events throughout the year. Topics include: Woman’s March, Environment, Health Care, McClintock’s office protests, Pride Parade, Solidarity with Charlottesville

Health Care Work Group
Held regular calling campaigns to prevent ACA repeal. Held six rallies in Placerville. Held Community Conversations on Health Care in California event, open to the public. Produced and distributed wallet cards to promote access for young people to birth control services.
In 2018: Hold at least two more speaker series sessions; continue advocacy at local, state, and federal levels; support register to vote and Get Out the Vote efforts.

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Communications Workgroup

Created the following: EDP website, EDP Newsletter, numerous special mailings. In 2018, we want to expand the EDP membership of young people, strengthen our online presence in select formats such as Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and to continue improving the newsletter so that it meets EDP members’ needs.

Social Organizing Work Group

Held regular social meetings to discuss the political situation we are facing and provide support to each other; coordinated the summer picnic in Coloma; Coordinated EDP’s Charlottesville Response with vigil, march and non-violence training.

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Workers Solidarity Network Work Group

Worked on campaigns to support striking union members, shared information on increasing the power of workers, attended Diversity Training, and put together an ongoing Driscoll Boycott campaign. Worked on organizing the memorial part of the “We Still Have a Dream” march. The group has attended marches at State Capitol for immigration rights and labor rights.

Organizer Training Work Group

Held a number educational events on diversity, community organizing, privilege and merit; held two trainings by Imigrant Watch and Know Your Rights in English and with immigrant workers in Spanish. Have also met with vineyard managers about their rights to protect their workers.

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