Confronting Racism/Inequity

Do not accept what is; confront it and move toward what should be. This page will present examples of what LWV-TC and other like-minded organizations are doing to move toward a truly diverse and inclusive community.  LWV-TC acknowledges the traditional land that comprises Thurston County today, the Nisqually, Cowlitz, and Coast Salish, and pays respect to their elders past and present.

Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day, May 4, 2021

Page down to see the Presidential Proclamation about this day!


May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month

During the month of May, there will be a number of articles, web links, and other resources posted for the information of League members, friends, and other interested individuals.  

May 10, 2021

The Smithsonian Institution, by way of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center is featuring more than 205 resources from across the Smithsonian uplifting Asian American and Pacific Islander Voices.  Visit here.

A good example is the piece on Twelve Women to Know for Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. 


May 5, 2021

The National Women's History Museum is pleased to share with you their 2021 resource toolkit which celebrates Asian American and /Pacific Islander women who have made, and are making, history as trailblazers, leaders, storytellers, and artists both nationally and around the world.

By Dr. Kelly A. Spring | 2017
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War internee and artist, Miné Okubo is well known for her representations of daily life and humanity. She is most famous for her drawings depicting Japanese and Japanese American internment during World War II.

May 4, 2021

Thank you GOOGLE for this acknowldgment:

Hisaye Yamamoto

American author                                        Google Doodle honors Japanese American author Hisaye Yamamoto - CNET  



Hisaye Yamamoto was an American author known for the short story collection Seventeen Syllables and Other Stories, first published in 1988. Wikipedia
Born: August 23, 1921, Redondo Beach, CA
Died: January 30, 2011, Los Angeles, CA
Notable awards: American Book Award, Lifetime Achievement
Genre: Short story


May 1, 2021Asian Pacific American Heritage Month 2021

South Sound Specific information from a LWVTC  member.

Asian and Pacific Islander farmers have been and are today important to the quality of life in our region. Here are some highlights: 

  • Pacific Islander Sheep Herding in 1830s: Hawaiian sheep herder employees called Kanakas (indentured servants) were the first non-Nisqually People to inhabit the Yelm prairie in 1830 -
  • Japanese American Oyster Farming starting in early 1900s: In 1919 Japanese immigrants brought the Pacific Oyster (was called Japanese Oyster prior to WWII) to the west coast - Pearl Oyster Company J. Emy Tsukimoto and Joe Miyagi (described in ) see also The Immigrant Oyster (Ostrea Gigas).
  • Local Color Farm and Fiber, Puyallup River Valley, (flowers and fiber), Emily Tzeng and Brian Love. 
  • Ninth Heaven Herbs & Vegetables, Olympia (Asian vegetables), Debbie Leung, at the Olympia Farmers Market in the 80’s. See her story here.



A Proclamation on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day, 2021

Today, thousands of unsolved cases of missing and murdered Native Americans continue to cry out for justice and healing.  On Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day, we remember the Indigenous people who we have lost to murder and those who remain missing and commit to working with Tribal Nations to ensure any instance of a missing or murdered person is met with swift and effective action. 

Our failure to allocate the necessary resources and muster the necessary commitment to addressing and preventing this ongoing tragedy not only demeans the dignity and humanity of each person who goes missing or is murdered, it sends pain and shockwaves across our Tribal communities.  Our treaty and trust responsibilities to Tribal Nations require our best efforts, and our concern for the well-being of these fellow citizens require us to act with urgency.  To this end, our Government must strengthen its support and collaboration with Tribal communities.

My Administration is fully committed to working with Tribal Nations to address the disproportionately high number of missing or murdered Indigenous people, as well as increasing coordination to investigate and resolve these cases and ensure accountability.  I am further committed to addressing the underlying causes behind those numbers, including — among others — sexual violence, human trafficking, domestic violence, violent crime, systemic racism, economic disparities, and substance use and addiction.  Federal partnerships to address the number of missing and murdered Indigenous peoples will be governed by the Nation-to-Nation foundation of our relationship with Tribal governments and respect for Tribal sovereignty and self-determination.  The challenges in Tribal communities are best met by solutions that are informed and shaped by Tribal leaders and Tribal governments. 

Tribes across the United States have long worked to provide solutions for their communities.  In April, the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Indian Reservation, the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Montana, and the FBI announced the Nation’s first Tribal Community Response Plan, part of a Department of Justice pilot project to address emergent missing person cases in their community.  When someone goes missing, it is often an urgent and time-sensitive situation.  The Tribal community response plan lays out a blueprint for how Tribal law enforcement; local, State, and Federal law enforcement; and community members can respond when someone goes missing from a Tribal community — resolving important issues of jurisdictional overlap and gaps in order to respond swiftly and effectively.  Other Tribes and Native villages such as the Muscogee (Creek) Nation in Oklahoma, Native Village of Unalakleet in Alaska, and the Bay Mills Indian Community in Michigan, are working with Federal partners on their own community response plans. 

My Administration has made a priority of helping to solve the issues surrounding Native Americans who go missing and those who are murdered across the United States — including high rates of Native women and girls, including transgender women and girls.  We recognize there is a level of mistrust of the United States Government in many Native communities, stemming from a long history of broken promises, oppression, and trauma. That is why we are pursuing ways to build trust in our Government and the systems designed to provide support to families in need.  We must bridge the gap for families in crisis, provide necessary support services, and support opportunities for healing through holistic community-driven approaches.

I am committed to building on the successes of the 2013 reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) by supporting the passage of the VAWA Reauthorization of 2021. Among other protections, this bill reaffirms inherent Tribal authority to prosecute certain non-Indian offenders — extending protections from domestic violence and dating violence to Native American victims of sexual violence, stalking, trafficking, child abuse, elder abuse, and assault against law enforcement or justice personnel when crimes are committed on Tribal territory.  Additionally, through the American Rescue Plan we provided an additional $35 million in grants for Tribes to provide temporary housing, assistance, and supportive services to victims of domestic and dating violence, as well as supplemental funding for the StrongHearts Native Helpline, and additional funding for services for sexual assault survivors.

My Administration has also committed to effectively implement the requirements of Savanna’s Act and the Not Invisible Act, legislation focused on combating the issues surrounding missing or murdered Indigenous persons.  The Presidential Task Force on Missing and Murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives continues to convene the Department of Justice, the Department of the Interior, and the Department of Health and Human Services, to address the issues from a combined public health–public safety partnership.  Furthering the efforts of the task force, the White House Council on Native American Affairs will bring together all relevant Federal agencies to work with Tribal Nations on exploring additional ways to enhance prevention efforts and improve access to safety and justice. 

Furthermore, informed by Tribal input, the Department of the Interior recently established the Missing & Murdered Unit (MMU) within the Bureau of Indian Affairs Office of Justice Services to provide leadership and direction for cross-departmental and interagency work involving missing and murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives.  The MMU will help bring the weight of the Federal Government to bear when investigating these cases and marshal law enforcement resources across Federal agencies and throughout Indian country. 

Our commitment to addressing these issues and to strengthening these critical partnerships is unwavering.  For too long, there has been too much sorrow and worry.  United by our mutual investment in healthy, safe communities, we will work together to achieve lasting progress.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim May 5, 2021, as Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Awareness Day.  I call on all Americans and ask all levels of government to support Tribal governments and Tribal communities’ efforts to increase awareness of the issue of missing and murdered American Indians and Alaska Natives through appropriate programs and activities.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fourth day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty-one, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fifth.



League of Women Voters of Thurston County Book Group

April 28, 2021

Bibliography for the “Let’s Talk About Race”

Members of the book group want to explore intersectionality of race, ablism, disability rights, and trans and gay issues. There are also resources about implicit bias. and race, economics, and politics.

Fiction About Race In America:

There, There by Tommy Orange

A Dream Called Home by Reyna Grande

An American Marriage by Tayari Jones

Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer


Books About Ableism and Disability Rights

Disability Visibility: First Person Stories From The Twenty-First Century

by Alice Wong

Being Heumann: An Unrepentant Memoir By A Disability Rights Activist

by Judith Heumann


Books About LGBTQ Issues:

For Colored Boys Who Have Considered Suicide When The Rainbow Is Still Not Enough: Coming of Age, Coming Out, Coming Home by Keith Boykin

Stonewall Reader paperback by New York Public Library (editor)


Books About Implicit Bias:

Caste: The Origins Of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson

So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

Blindspot: Hidden Biases Of Good People by Mahzarin Banji

and Anthony Greenwald


Books About Race, Economics, and Politics

What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia by Elizabeth Catte

Principles of a Pluralist Commonwealth by Gar Alperovitz

Evicted by Matthew Desmond

Imperfect Union by Steven Inskeep

Color Of Compromise by Jemar Tisby

This article with references focuses on the invisibility of black writers in Applachia.

The authors coined a term to describe them--”Affrilachia”.




April 13, 2021

Recently the LWVUS passed a new national by-law that marked a new era in the League’s approach to racial issues. From now on, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is on equal footing with non-partisanship as a value in the League of Women Voters. In that effort, Virginia Kase, CEO of the National League wrote to Senator Cory Booker of (D NJ) and Representative Barbara Lee (D CA) to express our support of a new Commission.

League Endorses Creation of U.S. Commission on Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation


As part of its commitment to continuing the fight for racial justice in our democracy, the League endorsed H.Con.Res.19 and S.Con.Res.6, concurrent resolutions urging the establishment of a United States Commission on Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation. We notified Senator Cory Booker (D NJ) and Representative Barbara Lee (D CA) of our support.


Honorable Barbara Lee

2470 Rayburn House Office Building Washington, DC 20515

Dear Representative Lee:

The League of Women Voters of the United States is pleased to endorse H.Con.Res.19, a concurrent resolution urging the establishment of a United States Commission on Truth, Racial Healing, and Transformation. We thank you for introducing this resolution.

The League of Women Voters has a long-standing commitment to equality for all Americans. We have worked for over 100 years to achieve a just system that protects every American’s right to vote. Voting rights and racial justice are inextricably linked, as the suppression of communities of color is regularly enacted through attacks on voting rights.

At our 54thConventionlast summer, delegates resolved that the League of Women Voters Help our elected officials and all Americans recognize these truths to be self-evident; that Black, Indigenous and all people of color (BIPOC) deserve equal

protection under the law; and that we demand solutions for the terrible wrongs done. This is imperative to do regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, disability, and gender identity or sexual orientation to ensure that we may truly become a nation "indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."

The League is committed to continuing the fight for racial justice in our democracy. We believe that H.Con.Res.19takes a big step forward in calling for a Commission on Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation. If we can be helpful as this resolution moves through the legislative process, please let us know. We thank you for your leadership and look forward to working with you to pass this all-important resolution.


Virginia Kase, CEO

Lee Reconciliation HConRes19


During the 2018 Convention in Chicago, the National League of Women Voters(LWVUS) held several workshops to introduce their new Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Policy:  LWV is an organization fully committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in principle and in practice.  

LWVWA Policy on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

LWV is an organization fully committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion in principle and in practice. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are central to the organization’s current and future success in engaging all individuals, households, communities, and policy makers in creating a more perfect democracy.

We will actively work to remove barriers to full participation in this organization regardless of gender, gender identity, ethnicity, race, native or indigenous origin, age, generation, sexual orientation, culture, religion, belief system, marital status, parental status, socioeconomic status, language, accent, ability status, mental health, educational level or background, geography, nationality, work style, work experience, job role function, thinking style, personality type, physical appearance, political perspective or affiliation and/or any other characteristic that can be identified as recognizing or illustrating diversity.



LWV es una organización totalmente comprometida con la diversidad, la equidad y la inclusión en principio y en la práctica. La diversidad, la equidad y la inclusión son fundamentales para el presente y futuro éxito de la organización en la participación de todas las personas, hogares, comunidades y políticos en la creación de una democracia más perfecta.

No habrá barreras para la participación plena en esta organización por razón de género, identidad de género, etnia, raza, origen nativo o indígena, edad, generación, orientación sexual, cultura, religión, sistema de creencias, estado civil, estado parental, estatus socioeconómico, idioma, acento, habilidad, salud mental, nivel educativo o antecedentes, geografía, nacionalidad, estilo de trabajo, experiencia laboral, función del rol laboral, estilo de pensamiento, tipo de personalidad, apariencia física, perspectiva política o afiliación y / o cualquier otra característica que identifique, reconozca, o ilustre diversidad.



LWVUS 2020 Convention also adopted the following resolution

We Resolve First, That the League advocates against systemic racism in the justice system and, at a minimum, for preventing excessive force and brutality by law enforcement. We also call for prompt actions by all League members to advocate within every level of government to eradicate systemic racism, and the harm that it causes;  

We Resolve Second, That the League help our elected officials and all Americans recognize these truths to be self-evident; that Black, Indigenous and all people of color (BIPOC) deserve equal protection under the law; and that we demand solutions for the terrible wrongs done, so that regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, disability, and gender identity or sexual orientation we may truly become a nation "indivisible, with liberty and justice for all".


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  • Carol Goss
    commented 2021-05-06 18:45:25 -0700
    Thanks so much for this great page of content, resources and book lists. It spans a wide breadth of meaningful information and provides the LWV’s policies. Especially appreciate the Spanish translation of the LWVWA DEI policy! GREAT WORK!!
  • followed this page 2020-11-25 13:40:40 -0800

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