WBWPC Disenfranchisement Committee Forms Coalition to Fight Voter Suppression

The Journal News/lohud.com April 25, 2013 Article

Written by Marcela Rojas

Article Pic

NEW ROCHELLE — The Westchester Black Women’s Political Caucus was joined by two local organizations

Saturday in their efforts to “quell voter disenfranchisement.”
Both the WESPAC Foundation and the Hudson Valley Community Coalition signed an agreement with the caucus to
work together on a three-part agenda that includes holding elected officials accountable, tracking their performance and mapping out a plan to affect upcoming elections and legislation for the betterment of the county and state.

The group of more than 25 women met at Bethesda Family Life Center on Lincoln Avenue.

WBWPC President Jewel Williams said a committee was formed within the caucus at the end of 2012 to discuss all
the ways disenfranchisement was occurring in the state. The caucus is a multipartisan political organization with five chapters in Westchester that was formed in 1976.
Among their concerns, Williams said, was how the state Senate Independent Democratic Conference formed a
leadership coalition with Senate Republicans and how two Democratic Westchester County legislators broke ranks
to join the Republicans in passing the 2013 budget

“We’re excited to collaborate with Westchester Black Women’s Political Caucus,” said Betsy Palmieri, executive
director of Hudson Valley Community Coalition. “We have a common interest that everyone who is eligible to vote
has a vote and making sure there are no roadblocks for new citizens and communities of color to be able to exercise
their ability to vote.”
WESPAC member Theadora DeSoyza said she wants to join the group to stand up to the Republicans and the right,
“who are trying to suppress voting.”
Williams said the sororities Delta Sigma Theta and Zeta Phi Beta also signed on in the collaborative
effort.  The coalition plans to meet regularly.


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