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Tallahassee, FL (August 2, 2019) — During the 2019 Legislative Session, Legislation was passed and signed by Governor Ron DeSantis to create the Florida Women’s Suffrage Centennial Commemoration Committee, charged with ensuring a statewide observance of the centennial of women’s suffrage in 2020 (Statute 267.0618). While we await the announcement of the appointees to the Committee, the Florida Commission on the Status of Women has formed a non-partisan collaborative partnership with more than 150 women centered institutions, organizations, and scholars from across Florida, to begin planning and sharing ideas on how to ensure that this anniversary, and the journey to achieve it, are commemorated and celebrated throughout the state.
The first statewide teleconference to begin discussing the Commemoration. Below is a summary of the discussion:
- The FCSW formed a Florida 2020 Women’s Suffrage Planning Committee chaired by Commissioner Rita Barreto Craig and co-chaired by Commissioner Rachel Saunders Plakon. Our overall goal is to work collaboratively throughout the state to ensure plans are in place to appropriately celebrate this major milestone. In addition, four members of the Commission will serve on the statewide committee mentioned above.
- The FCSW’s Annual Women’s History Essay Contest for students in grades sixth through eighth, and our inaugural Women’s History video contest open to high-schoolers, will both integrate the meaning and importance of the right to vote. Look for information and submission forms to be available in September.
- The FCSW is enhancing our website to include information and resources regarding the Florida Centennial Celebrations. Look for the webpage to be unveil later in August.
- Three Commissioners attended the National Association of Commissions for Women meeting held recently in Chicago to share information and learn about activities throughout the US. Please check out the following for some excellent ideas:
- The FCSW is developing collateral materials for the Centennial, including logos, social media, flier and talking point templates, as well as other materials that may be helpful in planning your commemorations. A special emphasis will be created relating to the women’s suffrage movement for women of color.
- The FCSW will draft special proclamation language that could be used during special events.
- Upon invitation, FCSW Commissioners will participate in local events (speakers bureau)
- The FCSW will share all of the latest developments!
In addition, other ideas were suggested:
- Select a book related to women’s history, encourage everyone to read and have local book discussions (We will work on this idea)
- PGA to research utilizing purple balls to promote Women’s Suffrage (Assigned to PGA)
- Research the possibility of a documentary
- Identify and promote key contacts throughout the state (i.e. in the Panhandle)
- Review language on the plaque in the Old Capital related to Women’s Suffrage – states “given” instead of “won” (We will address.)
Here’s where we NEED your help! PLEASE RESPOND NO LATER THAN AUGUST 23, 2019.
- Let’s get as many organizations/individuals involved as possible. Please review the contacts on our website – fcsw.net. Look at Resources/Directory. Provide your information so that we may include you on future mailings/projects as well as other contacts that should be on the list.
- Ideas on how we/you can promote the youth essay program among youth and their schools.
- Ideas on how we/you can promote the Community of Spirit Awards – Nominate someone TODAY!
- Let us know what you think of our website and what you would like to see on our website specifically related to the Women’s Suffrage anniversary.
- Ideas you have on how we/you can promote and effectively get women to complete the survey.
- Provide us with what information you would like to see on the following fact sheets: What is Women’s Suffrage? The history. Key Florida leaders. Data regarding women.
- What you would like to have included in the Proclamation.
- Book Selection – If we were to promote that everyone in the state read a particular book about women – what would it be and why?
Please share any information that you have already put in place and keep your ideas coming. All responses will be compiled and shared with those who responded. If you know someone that wants to be involved be sure to share this information. By collecting your efforts, we will be able to share your already planned activities and build plans to compliment your efforts. Additional information on commemoration plans will be released in the next few weeks. Sign up here to receive the latest news and updates.