[oasis][news]

News - August 1996

Women leaders launch net campaign to activate women's rights supporters

Women Leaders Online, the first women's advocacy group on the Internet, has launched a massive and unprecedented campaign to mobilize one million women and supportive men for grassroots political activism in 1996 and beyond.

The campaign, called Women Organizing for Change (WOC), is headquartered in Washington DC. The Executive Director is Jeanne Clark, who brings more than 25 years of feminist grassroots activism and media expertise to the organization. The Deputy Director is Rhonda Lees, a veteran political campaigner and an attorney who practiced family law in New York. Bob Fertik, Editor and Publisher of Political Woman Hotline and a co-founder of Women Leaders Online, will publish alerts and organize support among men.

Women Organizing for Change will use the Internet to link a million women in a powerful network that will rival extremist conservative groups like Pat Robertson's Christian Coalition and the NRA. WOC will also use the Internet to provide objective political information as an antidote to propagandists such as Rush Limbaugh and the rest of the conservative male-owned media. WOC intends to make a major difference in the 1996 elections, an election in which women's votes are expected to be decisive.

WOC is asking women and sympathetic men to pledge one hour each week for grassroots political work for pro-woman candidates and causes. This work includes on-line organizing, media activism, phone banking, office work, and leafleting. Those joining WOC will receive regular e-mail updates about political candidates, legislation, and media campaigns. Emergency alerts will go out whenever women's rights are threatened.

Activists can join WOC in one of three ways:

The goal of Women Organizing for Change is to set a new and positive agenda for the USA which will promote equality and justice in all areas, including jobs, education, health care, family policy, taxes and budgets, the environment, personal freedom, the media, and political reform. Specific actions will also be taken to stop violence against women, end sexual harassment and discrimination, and protect and expand women's reproductive rights. WOC intends to redirect the country's overall priorities, making women's views and women's voices key to all policy discussions.

Women Organizing for Change represents a dramatic alternative to the agenda of the self-described Revolutionaries who took control of Congress in 1994. That agenda was driven by extremist special interest groups, drafted behind closed doors by high-paid lobbyists, and railroaded through Congress by a PAC-addicted leadership. As polls show, Americans -- especially women -- now see through the deceptive rhetoric of the "Contract With America."

Founding members of WOC include former Vice Presidential candidate Geraldine Ferraro, author and columnist Barbara Ehrenreich, economist and political commentator Julianne Malveaux, Washington Feminist Faxnet publisher Martha Burk, Michelle Bernard, attorney with Patton Boggs L.L.P, and Dolores Briones, President of Createch Inc. of El Paso. Founding sponsors include Planned Parenthood Federation of America and many other feminist groups.

The Women Leaders Online web site at http://wlo.org, which was designed by Laurie Mann and a team of volunteers, features feminist news and issue alerts, links to women's resources on the Internet, a 10-point Women's Contract With America, an expose of anti-feminist women, and details on WOC co-sponsors and endorsers.

Women Leaders Online, the mother organization of WOC, is a grassroots, not-for-profit, non-partisan organization which was formed in New York City in February, 1995. WLO has members in every state, with occupations including artists, business owners, clergy, computer professionals, community activists, doctors, elected officials, homemakers, journalists, lawyers, professors, scientists, secretaries, students, and teachers.


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