News

We need YOU!

DA Switzerland has a few open positions in leadership and we're looking for fresh faces to fill them! If you've been looking for a way to get more involved, read on:

  • Volunteer Coordinator 🧑‍🏫
    A new role we have created and are seeking to fill, our Volunteer Coordinator will welcome new volunteers and find them the right opportunities to be of service.
     
  • Content Curator
    Help us gather content for our newsletter 📰, website 💻, and social media 📱 channels! 
      
  • General Volunteer 🙋
    Not ready to step into a specific leadership role, but still looking to get more involved? No worries! Complete this Volunteer Sign Up Form to let us know your interests!

If you have questions about any of these roles or are interested in finding out more, please send an email to our Chair, Eric Burns.


Herstory from the Women's Caucus - bell hooks

As a way to highlight the impact of the many female glass-breakers over time, and to show examples of women who have successfully fostered equality and women's rights, the DACH Women's Caucus will occasionally share herstories. We hope you enjoy reading about the groundbreaking bell hooks, a Black feminist author. She insisted that feminism needs to be intersectional in order to actually make progress.

If you would like to receive other information from the DACH Women's Caucus, please email them to let them know you would like to join.

bell hooks, Pathbreaking Black Feminist, Dies at 69

She insisted that the fight for women's rights had to take into account the diverse experiences of working-class and Black women.

By Clay Risen

December 15, 2021

bell hooks, whose incisive, wide-ranging writing on gender and race helped push feminism beyond its white, middle-class worldview to include the voices of Black and working-class women, died on Wednesday at her home in Berea, Ky. She was 69.

Her sister Gwenda Motley said the cause was end-stage renal failure.

Starting in 1981 with her book “Ain’t I a Woman? Black Women and Feminism,” Ms. hooks, who insisted on using all lowercase letters in her name, argued that feminism’s claim to speak for all women had pushed the unique experiences of working-class and Black women to the margins.

“A devaluation of Black womanhood occurred as a result of the sexual exploitation of Black women during slavery that has not altered in the course of hundreds of years,” she wrote.

If that seems like conventional wisdom today, that is in large part because of the enormous impact Ms. hooks had on both feminism and Black women, many of whom had resisted aligning with a movement they felt was designed to diminish their experiences.

“I think of bell hooks as being pivotal to an entire generation of Black feminists who saw that for the first time they had license to call themselves Black feminists,” Kimberlé Crenshaw, a law professor at Columbia, said in an interview. “She was utterly courageous in terms of putting on paper thoughts that many of us might have had in private.”

Womanhood, Ms. hooks said, could not be reduced to a singular experience, but had to be considered within a framework encompassing race and class. She called for a new form of feminism, one that recognized differences and inequalities among women as a way of creating a new, more inclusive movement — one that, she later said, had largely been achieved.

She applied a similar, and equally trenchant, criticism to Black antiracism, which she said was often grounded in a patriarchal worldview that excluded the experiences of Black women. But she also recognized, in books like “We Real Cool: Black Men and Masculinity” (2004), that such a worldview resulted from centuries of oppression and exclusion of Black men.

Ms. hooks resisted the title “public intellectual,” but by the 2000s she had achieved celebrity status. Her books, written in a flowing, jargon-free style, were required reading across a wide range of college courses. She appeared onstage with the actress Laverne Cox and activists like Janet Mock, and on the bookstand of the model and actress Emily Ratajkowski, who cited Ms. hooks as inspiration while writing her recent essay collection, “My Body” (2021).

Part of Ms. hooks’s appeal was the sheer diversity of her interests. Her work, across some 30 books, encompassed literary criticism, children’s fiction, self-help, memoir and poetry, and it tackled not just subjects like education, capitalism and American history but also love and friendship.

In “Teaching to Transgress: Education as the Practice of Freedom” (1994), she argued that the American education system had been constructed to quell dissent and shape young people into productive workers — and that it was therefore up to teachers to push against the grain by showing students how to use knowledge to resist.

She did just that in her own classes, instructing her students to see critical thinking and reading as liberating acts.

“She was a foundational influence on how I understood the possibility of my becoming a writer,” Min Jin Lee, the author of the novel “Pachinko,” who took two classes with Ms. hooks at Yale, said in an interview. “She taught me how to read. But more than that, she taught me how to read as a global person.”

bell hooks was the pen name of Gloria Jean Watkins, who was born on Sept. 25, 1952, in Hopkinsville, Ky., a small city in the southwestern part of the state not far from the Tennessee border.

Though her childhood in the semirural South exposed her to vicious examples of white supremacy, her tight-knit Black community in Hopkinsville showed her the possibility of resistance from the margins, of finding community among the oppressed and drawing power from those connections — a theme to which she would return frequently in her work.

Her father, Veodis Watkins, was a postal worker, and her mother, Rosa Bell (Oldham) Watkins, was a homemaker. Along with her sister Ms. Motley, Ms. hooks is survived by three other sisters, Sarah Chambers, Valeria Watkins and Angela Malone, and her brother, Kenneth.

Her early education took place in segregated schools, though she moved to white-majority schools once the state integrated its education system — an experience in navigating complex racial and gender hierarchies that she later drew on in her memoir, “Bone Black: Memories of Girlhood” (1996).

She was an avid reader, vacuuming up books and reading long past her bedtime. She dreamed of becoming an architect, and of leaving small-town Kentucky behind.

Read more

The 2022 Midterms

The 2022 midterm elections aren't until November but the primaries start in March with Texas. We highlighted some key races to watch that could turn State Capitols blue or change the balance in Congress.

Here are our races to watch. Which races are you watching in your state?

Texas: March 1st will be a rematch between incumbent House Democrat Henry Cuellar and progressive Jessica Cisneros who gave the incumbent a run for the money and held him to 51.8% in 2020. Will redistricting make this district ripe for Republican picking?

North Carolina: The state Supreme Court postponed the primaries from March to May because of two pending lawsuits that challenged legislative district maps. The U.S. Senate race has candidates on both sides vying for November since incumbent Richard Burr will not seek reelection. Will North Carolina turn blue?

Maryland: Republican Governor Larry Hogan is term-limited and the June 28th primary will be crowded including former DNC Chair, Tom Perez and state Comptroller, Peter Franchot. Will Democrats be able to keep this deep blue state blue?

New York: Andrew Cuomo is out of the picture but his replacement, Kathy Hochul, faces primary challenges from Representative Tom Suozzi and former NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio. Will New Yorkers disenchanted with the Biden administration turn the Empire State red?

Florida: Governor Ron DeSantis will face Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, one of only a few Democrats in the Republican run state, or former Governor and current House Democrat Charlie Crist. Can Republican Marco Rubio win a third term against House Democrat Val Demings?

Georgia: Stacy Abrams is back in the Governor race. Georgians are hoping for a Rocky-style knockout against Governor Kemp in November. Can Senator Raphael Warnock stave off a challenge from former NFL player Hershel Walker?


Join Us in the Race to 222!

It's a new year, and 2022 may hold the most important midterm elections of our lifetime! To make sure that Democrats hold the House and Senate (and maybe pick up some Governorships and Secretaries of State along the way), Democrats Abroad needs to mobilize all of our members, as well as registering new voters!

You can help!

First, go to VoteFromAbroad.org to register to vote and/or request your ballot(s) for 2022.

Then, join DA Switzerland at a Virtual Voter Registration Training on January 18th to learn how to request your own ballot and how to help others do the same. Voter registration will be an all-hands-on-deck situation this year!

To make the voter registration process more fun for our members, we have created a "Race to 222" campaign. What does this mean? We are trying to register 222 members by 2/22/2022. 

Already requested your ballot?

THANK YOU! You should be receiving a message from a DACH leader in the coming days with a special "Race to 222" graphic you can add to your social media accounts to help get the word out!

Read more

December Elections

In the recent November elections, there are two main stories we should pay close attention to:
1.    Republicans flipped Virginia
2.    Candidates of color made history

Michelle Wu is the first woman and person of color to be elected mayor of Boston; Pittsburg elected Ed Gainy, the city’s first black mayor; and Abdullah Hammoud is now the first Arab-American and Muslim mayor of Dearborn, Michigan. These are just a couple of names that reflect the changing and evolving landscape of our country’s political leadership. 

There are important elections to close out the year including run-off and special elections in Texas, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, Arkansas, and Massachusetts after the jump.

For more information and links to the specific state elections pages, go to Ballotpedia.

Read more

Geneva Donation Drive

November has two great holidays: one offers Americans an opportunity to honor our US servicemen and women and the other to give thanks for our good fortune. 

Just a few hours north of us is the Landstuhl Regional Medical Center, the largest US military hospital outside the US. On any given week there are around 100 active or recovering soldiers there. Some quickly return to their duty station, others can be there for a lot longer. 

The Wounded Warrior Project and fellow support organizations in Landstuhl work with the soldiers to make their unexpected stay in Germany as comfortable as they can. Simple pleasures like Crocs and cozy hoodies, or vitals like socks and boxers can make a difference. 

The Geneva Chapter of Democrats Abroad is running a donation drive from Veterans Day to right after Thanksgiving. We warmly invite our members to RDV with us from 10:00-13:00 at any of the following locations:

Saturday 13th Balexert, Geneva
Sunday 14th Gare Cornavin, Geneva
Saturday 20th La Combe, Nyon
Sunday 21st Lausanne Gare, Lausanne
Saturday 27th Aubonne Outlets
Sunday 28th Belair Centre, Yverdon-les-Bains

To get precise location on each day join the DACH-GVA Chapter WhatsApp group: https://chat.whatsapp.com/GcBMuXR2gMl14iYp0xUAoS

The A, B, C’s of the items needed:  
ALL NEW (for health reasons, used clothing cannot be accepted)
Boxers, L 
Briefs, all sizes
Crocs or sneakers, all sizes
Duffel bags (no logos)
Jackets
Long sleeve t-shirts, unisex
Nothing 2XL or 3XL
Pajamas (lightweight, S, M)
Socks (black, all sizes)
Sweatpants, M
Sweatshirts (no logos, S, M)
T-shirts (no logos, not white)
Umbrellas

Working together, we can make a huge difference in the lives and recuperation of our fellow Americans abroad!


School Voter Registration Team

We are putting together a team willing to visit international schools and universities around Switzerland from February to May 2022 for the purpose of providing voter registration assistance.

Each visit would require a standing team of 2 to 3 DACH members from a pool of 5 or 6 members so that members could alternate visits. Team members will be required to take a registration training course which will be offered in January 2022.

Vivien Beetle and Joe Amato will be leading this project. We are looking for four more volunteers who have some flexibility in their weekly schedules.

We have designated the following schools as having a large enough American community to warrant a visit, and for which we would offer our help to the entire community (students, teachers and parents):

  • International School of Lausanne
  • International School of Geneva – La Grande Boissiere
  • Leysin American School
  • Zurich International School
  • International School of Zug & Luzern
  • College Du Leman Sarl
  • International School Bern
  • International School Basel
  • TASIS Lugano

We also ask our fellow DACH members if they have a contact for the Parent Associations from any of these schools. 

Additionally, if you are aware of an international school with a fair number of Americans that is not on the list, please contact Joe Amato at [email protected].

 


Women's Caucus Survey

The DACH Women’s Caucus would like to know how we can best address your concerns. Could you please take this brief survey to share your thoughts? You can complete the survey via the link here.

1. What topics would you like the DACH women’s caucus to address:

  • Reproductive health/freedom/justice
  • Violence against women
  • Income inequality
  • Women's health
  • Paid leave
  • Combatting voter suppression
  • Universal pre-k
  • Affordable childcare
  • Intersectional feminism
  • Other _____________________

2. What types of activities would you like the DACH women’s caucus to organize?

3. Are you interested in organizing any activities for the DACH women’s caucus? If so, please indicate the type of activities.

4. Do you have any other ideas, suggestions, questions or input for us? Please leave a comment here. 


Upcoming November Elections

November 2021 Elections By State

The 2022 mid-terms are almost a year away and Tuesday, November 2nd could be a preview of what's to come. Regular gubernatorial elections take place in Virginia and New Jersey as well as the race for New York City Mayor.

For more information and links to the specific state elections pages, go to Ballotpedia.

 

Alabama

November 16, 2021

  • House of Representatives District 63 Special Primary Run-Off Election

Arizona

November 2, 2021

  • Chandler Special Election
  • Tucson Municipal General Election
  • Scottsdale Special Election
  • Gilbert Special Election

California

November 2, 2021

  • Woodside Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Moreno Valley Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Indio Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Northstar Community Services District Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Long Valley Community Services District Local Ballot Measure Election
  • San Dieguito Union High School District Board of Education Area 5 Special Election
  • Riverside Municipal Run-Off Election
  • Sonoma Valley Health Care District Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Moreno Valley Unified Board of Education Trustee Area 4 Special Election
  • Commerce Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Isleton Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Alhambra Unified School District Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Inglewood Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Berryessa Union School District Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Orange Cove Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Los Angeles County General Election
  • Brawley Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Menlo Park City Elementary School District Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Los Gatos Union School District Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Kenwood Fire Protection District Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Santa Cruz Local Ballot Measure Election

Colorado

November 2, 2021

  • Colorado General Election
  • Avon Mayor and Town Council Recall Election

Delaware

November 16, 2021

  • Dover City Council District 1 Special General Election

Florida

November 2, 2021

  • Miami Municipal General Election 
  • Florida Congressional District 20 Special Primary
  • St. Petersburg Municipal General Election 
  • Orlando Municipal General Election 
  • Hialeah Municipal Primary Election 

November 16, 2021

  • Hialeah Municipal General Election 
  • Miami Municipal General Run-Off Election

Georgia

November 2, 2021

  • Georgia House of Representatives District 165 Special Election
  • Atlanta Municipal General Election
  • Fulton County Local Ballot Measure Election

Idaho

November 2, 2021

  • West Ada School District Local Ballot Measure and School Board Election
  • Boise Municipal General Election

Iowa

November 2, 2021

  • Des Moines Municipal General Election

Kansas

November 2, 2021

  • Maize Unified School District 266 School Board General Election
  • Goddard Unified School District 265
  • Nemaha Unified School District 115 Amy Sudbeck Recall Election
  • Wichita Public Schools School Board General Election
  • Circle Unified School District 375 School Board General Election
  • Haysville Unified School District 261 School Board General Election
  • Wichita General Election
  • Topeka Municipal General Election

Kentucky

November 2, 2021

  • House of Representatives District 51 Special Election 
  • House of Representatives District 89 Special Election
  • State Senate District 22 Special Election

Louisiana

November 13, 2021

  • Primary Election

Maine

November 2, 2021

  • Statewide General Election
  • Statewide Ballot Measure Election

Maryland

November 2, 2021

  • Annapolis Municipal General Election
  • Greenbelt General Election 

Massachusetts

November 2, 2021

  • Boston Municipal General Election
  • House of Representatives 4th Essex District Special Primary 

Michigan

November 2, 2021

  • State Senate District 8 Special General Election
  • Detroit Municipal General Election
  • State Senate District 28 Special General Election
  • Sand Lake Recall Election
  • Lansing Municipal General Election

Minnesota

November 2, 2021

  • Saint Paul Public Schools School Board General Election
  • Minneapolis Mayoral General Election
  • Anoka-Hennepin School District School Board General Election
  • St. Paul Municipal General Election

Missouri

November 2, 2021

  • Brian Steele Recall Election

Mississippi

November 2, 2021

  • State Senate District 32 Special General Election
  • State Senate District 38 Special General Election

Montana

November 2, 202

  • Helena Municipal General Election

New Hampshire

November 2, 2021

  • Manchester School District Board General Election
  • Concord Municipal General Election

New Jersey

November 2, 2021

  • Statewide General Election including Governor

New Mexico

November 2, 2021

  • Bernalillo County General Election
  • Albuquerque Public Schools School Board General Election
  • Albuquerque Municipal General Election
  • Santa Fe Municipal General Election

New York

November 2, 2021

  • Erie County General Election
  • Albany General Election
  • New York City General Election including Mayor

North Carolina

November 2, 2021

  • Durham Municipal General Election

Ohio

November 2, 2021

  • Pickerington Local School District School Board General Election
  • Gahanna-Jefferson City School District School Board General Election
  • Groveport-Madison Local School District School Board General Election
  • Worthington Schools School Board General Election
  • Hamilton Local School District School Board General Election
  • Toledo Municipal General Election
  • Columbus City Schools School Board General Election
  • Olentangy Local School District School Board General Election
  • Hilliard City Schools School Board General Election
  • New Albany-Plain Local School District School Board General Election
  • Cincinnati General Election
  • Sylvania City School District School Board General Election
  • Berea City School District School Board General Election
  • Washington Local School District School Board General Election
  • South-Western City Schools School Board General Election
  • Franklin County General Election
  • Dublin City Schools School Board General Election
  • Statewide Ballot Measure Election
  • Cincinnati Public Schools School Board General Election
  • Maumee City School District School Board General Election
  • Euclid City School District School Board General Election
  • Cleveland General Election
  • Westerville City School District School Board General Election
  • Canal Winchester Local School District School Board General Election

Pennsylvania

November 2, 2021

  • Philadelphia Special Election
  • Statewide General Election
  • House of Representatives District 164 Special Election
  • House of Representatives District 113 Special Election

Rhode Island

November 2, 2021

  • State Senate District 3 Special Election

South Carolina

November 2, 2021

  • Columbia Municipal General Election

November 16, 2021

  • Columbia Municipal General Run-Off Election

Texas

November 2, 2021

  • East Central Independent School District Special Election
  • Statewide General Election
  • Fort Worth Independent School District Special Election
  • Alief Independent School District Special Election
  • Tarrant County Local Ballot Measure Election
  • Judson Independent School District Special Election
  • Texas House of Representatives District 118 General Run-Off Election 
  • Highland Park Independent School District (Dallas) Special Election 
  • Lubbock County Special Election 
  • Canutillo Independent School District Special Election 
  • New Deal Independent School District Special Election 
  • Alamo Heights Independent School District Special Election 
  • Lubbock Special Election 
  • Southside Independent School District Special Election

Utah

November 2, 2021

  • Salt Lake City municipal general election

Virginia

November 2, 2021

  • Statewide General Election including Governor

Washington

November 2, 2021

  • Statewide General Election

Wisconsin

November 2, 2021

  • Mequon-Thiensville School District Recall Elections Against Four School Board Members

Wyoming

November 2, 2021

  • Laramie County General election


Open Days and Earth Beats at Kunsthaus Zurich

After 13 years in the making the Kunsthaus Zurich Chipperfield extension is finally open to the public and as a thank you the museum and the city of Zurich are offering free entry October 9 - 10. It's also a perfect time to check out "Earth Beats," the museums look at climate change through the eyes of world re-known artists like Vaughn Bell, Anna Jermolaewa and Ana Mendieta.