Events News

Dec 10 – Human Rights Day – Community Action for Refugees

December 10th is Human Rights Day!


Join the Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans – PANA and 20 other organizations 5pm downtown at the Waterfront Park (by the County admin building) to demonstrate support for refugees!

County Center/ Little Italy trolley stop (Green line)
MTS buses 280 / 923 / 83

We will be gathering as a community to lift up the refugee crisis, to stand up against hateful rhetoric, and to ask our public officials to take responsible action to welcome refugees.

“California welcomes the most U.S. refugees each year, and San Diego is the #1 destination city. Every day, 10 refugees move to San Diego, and 80% are women and children.”

Welcoming refugees requires that we ensure their inclusion in economic, social and political opportunities.​

Events News

Nov 16 – Treatment of Woman in Politics in Traditional and Social Media

Miss RepresentationOnline harassment and cyber-bullying has been in the news over the last few weeks after the organizers of the annual South by Southwest Interactive (SXSW) conference canceled two panels after receiving threats of physical violence.

It was not until two high-profile, online media companies Buzzfeed and Vox, announced they would pull out of the conference over the decision that SXSW agreed to host an ‘Online Harassment Summit’ at the 2016 conference.

“Earlier this week we made a mistake. By canceling two sessions we sent an unintended message that SXSW not only tolerates online harassment but condones it, and for that we are truly sorry,” the SXSW statement said. “Online harassment is a serious matter and we stand firmly against hate speech and cyber-bullying. It is a menace that has often resulted in real world violence; the spread of discrimination; increased mental health issues and self-inflicted physical harm.”

As well as the threat of physical violence and the use of aggressive language, there are other more subtle elements used in both new and old world media.

Some candidates are described as shrill, bossy, nagging, feisty, abrasive, ambitious, bubbly, emotional, frigid, frumpy, high-maintenance, pushy, sassy, headstrong, hysterical, and illogical. Guess which gender?

At the recent Democratic Convention in Escondido, George Lakoff contrasted differences in  thinking and behavior between Democrats and Republicans based on nurturing, collaborative females and disciplinarian, controlling males.

Here in San Diego, on this club’s Facebook page and elsewhere, we’ve seen unsubstantiated, ridiculous and hurtful claims brazenly made against women in politics.

This months meeting will feature a panel discussion of the Treatment of Woman in Politics in Traditional and Social Media. Panelists to include:

  • Eva Posner, Communications Coordinator for the San Diego County Democratic Party @evaposner
  • Ramla Sahid, Executive Director of Partnership for the Advancement of New Americans @Almar_S
  • Lois Lane, freelance online writer for the OB Rag

Moderator: Emily Bonner, President of the Democratic Woman’s Club of San Diego County

Come along to lend your voice, learn from the experiences of others, and together determine positive steps we can take to improve the situation for everyone.

Background reading:
The Troll Slayer – A Cambridge classicist takes on her sexist detractors (New Yorker)

Monday November 16, 7pm – Social Time from 6:30pm

Social Time
Members are encouraged to get together from 6:30pm before the meeting starts.
Please bring whatever light drinks/snacks that you’d like to share.

AjA Project Building, 4089 Fairmount Ave, San Diego, CA 92105 (map)

The building is on the south-east corner of Polk and Fairmount, just north of University. Parking is also available at the adjoining Southern Sudanese and East African Community Centers on Fairmount Ave. Bus routes 7 and 13.

Call or email (619) 900-4751

We will also be voting on whether to endorse the Raise Up San Diego call to support the proposition on the June ballot to overturn Mayor Faulconer’s veto and increase the minimum wage. More details here.


Raise Up San Diego Endorsement Vote

RUSD_Header-02-01At our October meeting we heard from Norma Rodriguez, (and some members of CPI) about the opportunity on next year’s June ballot for San Diegans to overturn Mayor Faulconer’s veto and increase the minimum wage.

The measure was originally proposed by Council President Todd Gloria and supported by Council President Pro Tem Sherri Lighter and Councilmembers Marti Emerald and Myrtle Cole.

We were asked for the club’s support and this article is part of our formal notice to members, and to further publicize the discussion.

Please make a note to attend our meeting on Monday, November 16 when we will vote on endorsing this proposal.

You can read more information about the proposal here at


News Opinion

Veterans Club Shows Good Judgement in Finding Three Candidates for San Diego City Council District 9 ‘Highly Qualified’

D9candidatesLast month the Veterans Democratic Club of San Diego displayed interesting contrasts in resolving conflicts between Democratic candidates vying for the same seat.

Many of us awoke on Saturday September 19, 2015 to read in the LA Times that Toni Atkins is challenging incumbent State Senator Marty Block for the 39 Senate District. It is being seen as a sad day when the San Diego County Democratic Party can’t muster a candidate for Mayor and sits idly by as this costly, internecine fight develops.

Who would the Veteran club members consider to endorse for the San Diego City Council race in District 9? Back in July the club had endorsed Rafael Castellanos for City Attorney over Mara Elliott and Gil Cabrera. At that time they came in for criticism from some Democratic Party leaders for their early endorsement. Would they feel compelled to pick one D9 candidate over the others to demonstrate leadership and resolve, or would they be aware of the different circumstances involved in this race? 

Since its inception District 9 has always been described as a heavily Democratic leaning district and with at least 6 candidates running there’s a good chance that more than one Dem will make it out of the Primary and to the General in November.

Bearing this in mind club members didn’t have to ‘play it safe’ and pick the anointed candidate. Instead they could take a chance on a new, non-traditional type of politician, born from the community and engaged with the citizenry at a more grassroots level. They didn’t have to only consider who can raise the most money, but they could ask where that money comes from (and what behavior it will induce)? They didn’t have to make the ‘sensible’ choice but could indulge in identity politics, and pick their preferred candidate(s).

On Saturday members got to hear first hand from Ricardo Flores, Georgette Gómez and Sarah Saez.

Each of the candidates provided background information in a printout that was attached to the meeting agenda, and each spoke for 5 minutes before fielding a variety of questions from the members.

Ricardo Flores ( is endorsed by sitting San Diego City Councilmember Marti Emerald, who spoke to endorse her chief of staff at the start of the meeting. He’s a D9 native and has worked with Marti in the district for the last 2 years. Prior to that he was a senior aide to Congresswoman Susan Davis and President of the San Diego Chicano Democratic Association.

Next they heard from Georgette Gómez ( who is the Associate Director of Toxic-Free Neighborhoods Campaign at the Environmental Health Coalition. Georgette also serves on the City Heights Area Planning Committee and is a co-founder of Sustainable San Diego.

Lastly they heard from Sarah Saez ( who is Program Director for United Taxi Workers of San Diego. Sarah currently serves as a board member for Mid-City Community Advocacy Network, the Foundation for Change, and as a delegate of the San Diego and Imperial Counties Central Labor Council, where she sits on committees focusing on policy, organizing, and immigration.

Ricardo suggested the City of San Diego should have a Veterans Commission and all of the candidates supported spending more on affordable housing and housing first programs to help homeless veterans. All of the candidates support clean elections and getting money out of politics.

After a motion for the club to endorse Ricardo Flores failed to get enough votes (60% is required for endorsement) a second motion to rate all three candidates as ‘highly qualified’ was passed unanimously.

After the result of the vote was announced one of the candidates publicly thanked the club members for restoring their faith in the local Democratic Party.

After the meeting one of the candidates posted photographs taken individually with the officers of the club, along with their personal endorsements. Some Dems who saw those social media posts incorrectly thought that candidate had been endorsed. The vote of the club members was to rate all three candidates as highly qualified.

If we’re to grow the Party to reach out, learn from, and represent the needs of the disaffected and disenfranchised, it’s important to keep the umbrella wide and open in District 9. This decision by the Veterans Democratic Club helps to do just that.

John Loughlin
Secretary, Democratic Woman’s Club

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect those of the Democratic Woman’s Club of which he is a member.



Oct 24 – Women’s Hackathon @ Cal State San Marcos

Women's HackathonThe 12-hour semi-annual event is open to all female high school and college students, who will work collaboratively to design a website, game, or mobile app that addresses a selected real world challenge. No prior programming experience is required and registration is free. ​There may be up to 6 people in a team. Prior to the event, teams can plan, storyboard, and determine what they want to do and how they will go about building their solution. The only caveat is that no programming is allowed until the day of the event. ​Projects will be judged in 4 categories: Appropriateness to Theme, User Experience & Functionality, Originality & Impact, and Technical Difficulty.

​We know the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) workforce is crucial to America’s innovative capacity and global competitiveness. Yet women are vastly underrepresented in these fields. The 2009 US Census reveals that although women fill close to half of all jobs in the country’s economy, they hold less than 25 percent of the STEM jobs. This has been the case throughout the past decade, even as college-educated women have increased their share of the overall workforce. We simply must do more to expose young women to the opportunities in STEM fields.

Over 60 female high school and college hackers already registered to participate in the Women’s Hackathon at CSUSM on Saturday, October 24, 2015 – the anticipation is building! We can’t wait to see what these talented girls will create!

We’re looking for great minds to pull off a great event. Are you a software developer or IT pro from a local company/university and want to lead a project team? Come join the fun! Mentors from Qualcomm, Microsoft, Intuit, Sony and more have joined previous Hackathons to help guide girls through story-boarding, project development and delivery. Learn about becoming a mentor and register here.

Project Challenges. Hackers will collaborate on a web site, mobile app or game to develop a solution for one of two civic challenges. Announcing Challenge #1: From Care to College, sponsored by the ACE Scholar Program at CSUSM, which is aimed to encourage and provide support for foster youth to overcome the difficulty in college applications. More details on Challenge #2 coming soon!

If you are inspired to learn more about the semi-annual Women’s Hackathon @ CSUSM you can visit


Do you stand with Planned Parenthood?

plannedparenthoodCalifornia Democrats stand strong with Planned Parenthood against the latest outrageous wave of GOP attacks on women’s health care.

In fact, just this past weekend at our latest CDP Executive Board meeting, delegates passed a resolution supporting Planned Parenthood’s mission of providing confidential, nonjudgmental health care and education to millions of women and men all across the country.

Will you join us in supporting Planned Parenthood, right now?

Add your name to the California Democratic Party’s resolution supporting Planned Parenthood here. >>

The Republican Party’s latest attacks are just the most recent part of a smear campaign against Planned Parenthood and women’s health care that has been going on for years.

Unfortunately, California Republicans are leading the charge — and we must hold them accountable.

Four GOP Congressmen from California — Dana Rohrabacher, Ken Calvert, Doug LaMalfa, and David Valadao — co-sponsored the radical Defund Planned Parenthood Act of 2015 in the U.S. House.

And GOP Assemblymember Melissa Melendez, joined by 12 other Republican lawmakers in Sacramento, are calling for a full audit of Planned Parenthood for supposed “wanton violations of the law” — even though the right-wing allegations have been thoroughly debunked.

Enough is enough.

We must hold California Republicans accountable for these brazen assaults on women’s health care and Planned Parenthood.

Add your name to the CDP’s resolution supporting Planned Parenthood here — and let California Republicans know that we will hold them accountable at the ballot box in 2016! >>

Thank you,

Shawnda Westly
California Democratic Party