The Smithtown League of Women Voters is always ready to welcome new members. Accordingly, anyone wishing to learn more about the League and its activities, with the potential for membership, is invited to call 499-0107.
The Smithtown League meets socially every last Friday of the month at Sweet Lucilles - 287 W. Main St. in the Hilltop Shopping Center (Smithtown). We get together for breakfast and discussion at 9:00 AM and would welcome anyone who is interested in civic affairs, wants to improve local, state and national government and is willing to work in a nonpartisan way to accomplish this.
For more information contact LWV Smithtown President MZSmithtown@lwv-suffolkcounty.org
Immigration Position of the League of Women Voters of the United States
The League's History
In the 111th Congress, the League lobbied in support of the DREAM (Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors) Act that would provide a path to citizenship for young immigrants who complete a college degree or serve in the military, thereby enabling them to be a fully productive part of American society. The legislation passed the House, but lacked enough votes to overcome a filibuster in the Senate.
The League's Position
Statement of Position on Immigration, as Announced by National Board, April 2008:
The League of Women Voters believes that immigration policies should promote reunification of immediate families; meet the economic, business and employment needs of the United States; and be responsive to those facing political persecution or humanitarian crises.
Provision should also be made for qualified persons to enter the United States on student visas. All persons should receive fair treatment under the law.
The League supports federal immigration law that provides an efficient, expeditious system (with minimal or no backlogs) for legal entry of immigrants into the United States.
To complement these goals the League supports federal policies to improve economies, education, job
opportunities and living conditions in nations with large emigrating populations.
In transition to a reformed system, the League supports provisions for unauthorized immigrants already in the country to earn legal status.
The League supports federal payments to impacted communities to address the financial costs borne by
states and local governments with large immigrant populations.
Criteria for Legal Admission to the United States
The League supports the following criteria for legal admission of persons into the United States:
Administration and Enforcement
- Family reunification of spouses or minor children with authorized immigrants or citizens;
- Flight from persecution or response to humanitarian crises in home countries;
- Economic, business and employment needs in the Unites States;
- Education and training needs of the United States;
- Educational program opportunities; and
- Lack of a history of serious criminal activity.
The League supports due process for all persons, including the right to a fair hearing, right to counsel,
right of appeal and right to humane treatment.
The League supports:
Unauthorized Immigrants Already in the United States
- Improved technology to facilitate employer verification of employee status;
- Verification documents, such as status cards and work permits, with secure identifiers;
- Significant fines and penalties for employers who hire unauthorized workers;
- Improved technology for sharing information among federal agencies;
- More effective tracking of individuals who enter the United States; and
- Increased personnel at borders.
The League also supports programs allowing foreign workers to enter and leave the United States to meet seasonal or sporadic labor needs.
In achieving overall policy goals, the League supports a system for unauthorized immigrants already in the country to earn legal status, including citizenship, by paying taxes, learning English, studying civics and meeting other relevant criteria. While policy reforms, including a path to legal status, remain unachieved, the League does not support deporting unauthorized immigrants who have no history of criminal activity.
The League of Women Voters of Smithtown is a local division of the League of Women Voters of the United States, a nationwide, non-partisan organization dedicated to strengthening democracy through citizen education and advocacy. The League grew out of the movement to give women the right to vote. Membership is open to all women and men.
Our work consists of voter service activities, education and advocacy.
- Assist and advise new voters with registration
- Conduct and moderate candidate meetings
- Produce and distribute non-partisan information about candidates and ballot issues
- Provide speakers to discuss the election process and ballot issues
- Encourage voter turn-out
- Observe government, library board, and school board meetings
EDUCATION and ADVOCACY
- A unified state court system
- Affordable housing
- Alternatives to incarceration
- Campaign finance reform
- Civil liberties
- Ethics and lobbying reform
- Global climate change
- Health care reform
- Local and county land use and preservation
- Statewide guidelines for all levels of law enforcement
- Statewide use of optical scan voting machines that have a paper backup
- Information on a wide range of important regional and national issues
- LWV publications - local, state and national
- Smithtown LWV newsletter The VOTER
- Facts for Voters and the annual Directory of Public Officials
- Enhanced skills in discussion, lobbying, writing, speaking
- Training for local community and governmental leadership
- Increased awareness of how your government works
- Chance to influence public policy
- Meet a diverse and interesting group of friends in your
Educate the public,
Lobby our Legislators,
Encourage all those eligible to vote
Help us succeed in our mission to:
Let the people know
Make the people care
Help the people act
For more information
contact LWV Smithtown President MZSmithtown@lwv-suffolkcounty.org
The League of Women Voters was founded by Carrie Chapman Catt in 1920 during the convention of the National American Woman Suffrage Association. The convention was held just six months before the 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified, giving women the right to vote after a 72-year struggle.
The League began as a "mighty political experiment" designed to help 20 million women carry out their new responsibilities as voters. It encouraged them to use their new power to participate in shaping public policy. From the beginning, the League has been an activist, grassroots organization whose leaders believed that citizens should play a critical role in advocacy. It was then, and is now, a nonpartisan organization. League founders believed that maintaining a nonpartisan stance would protect the fledgling organization from becoming mired in the party politics of the day. However, League members were encouraged to be political themselves, by educating citizens about, and lobbying for, government and social reform legislation.
This holds true today. The League is proud to be nonpartisan, neither supporting nor opposing candidates or political parties at any level of government, but always working on vital issues of concern to members and the public. The League has a long, rich history,that continues with each passing year.