Guatemala

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DAGT is the official country committee for US Democrats living in Guatemala. Our mission is to inform and to encourage every US Citizen in Guatemala to vote in all US elections that their state of last residence allows them to, be they local, state, general and mid-term, and to invite US Citizens to join Democrats Abroad. During 2017 we will grow our membership and encourage participation so that we are as strong as possible as we head into the 2018 midterm elections to help Democrats regain the Senate and win back the House of Representatives. Watch this space for upcoming announcements of meetings and events - we have events planned throughout the year, and encourage anyone interested in participating to get in touch.

If you have questions or would like to help with Democrats Abroad in Guatemala please contact us.

John Chudy, Chair
Democrats Abroad - Guatemala 
da_guatemala@democratsabroad.org

 

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DA Guatemala Leadership:

Kee Evans
| Events Coordinator
Juan Aris
| Counsel
Scotney Young
| Media Contact
Traci Styner
| Lago Atitlán MeetUp Group Chair
See all Leaders


  • News

    June 2020 DAGT Executive Committee Meeting

     

    Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

    Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, June 18, 2020 at 11:00am via WebEx

    Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Mary Lou Ridinger, Vice Chair; Juan Pablo Aris, Counsel; Scotney Young, Media Contact; Vincent D’Agati, interim Treasurer; Alison Schwarz, interim Media Contact; Rachael Shenyo, Occidente MeetUp Chair.

     

    Per our bylaws (paragraph 19.3), all meetings are open to all members. 

    Called to order at 11:08am

    Approval of Agenda and Minutes: Minutes from May meeting and agenda for June meeting were approved.

    Treasurer’s report: Recent expenses of Q660 for the one dozen Biden tee shirt order was paid June 15th, and a cash donation of Q400 received during Direct Email Campaign and one tee shirt sale are reflected this month bringing the June balance to Q6,248.

    Chair’s Report: Mary Lou moved and Rachael seconded a motion to approve Vincent D’Agati as interim Treasurer. Following discussion a vote of the Excom, including proxies of Kee and Dave Evans carried by John Chudy, passed unanimously. An online Google form ballot will now be sent to the full membership for a vote to make Vincent’s appointment formal for the balance of the 2019-2021 term as per articles XVII and XIX of our bylaws. The Google ballot will go out on June 19th and run till June 20th 5pm local time. Welcome Vincent!

    The position of Secretary remains vacant. Also, Scotney vacates the position of Media Contact in August when she moves to Washington, DC. Alison Schwarz, has stepped forward to replace Scotney to act as interim Media Contact as she gains experience with our social media sites and DA’s website management tools. Welcome Aly!

    John reported on the DAGT 2020 Direct Email Fundraiser that was restarted on June 8th following suspension due to Covid-19. Four donations followed, with two winning t-shirts for amounts over $35. The campaign was ended on June 19th.

    Rachael offered a piece of jewelry with a value of Q300 for any future raffle. She could send it to Antigua via Guatex. We will make note of that offer for our next in-person fund raising pot-luck with a raffle.

    Paid Facebook ads are running now on Democrats Abroad Guatemala. One completed on Democrats Abroad Latino in Spanish June 4 to 9, for $10. The one running now prepared by Scotney and boosted by the John June is also running 5 days to June 20th for $10. Funds from t-shirt sales and the Direct Email campaign will be used to boost paid ads on Facebook up to August at least.

    Biden President tee-shirts are in and are on sale for Q100 each in sizes small, medium and large. An email promoting the tee shirts will go out June 19th and will include instructions for buying and shipping t-shirts beyond Antigua via Guatex.

    John reported on the Democrats Abroad Global Convention and DPCA meeting that took place over the weekend of June 6 and 7, and the Americas region meeting,  that took place, June 16th, both via WebEx. One item of note from the regional meeting is the new DPCA initiative to raise $25,000 via an online raffle at $20.20 per ticket, with proceeds to be used to contract CallHub time to make at least 200,000 global phone calls to get the vote out since no country committee or their chapters can hold live in-person voter registration/ballot request events. Phone banking is the go-to tool this year.

    Events 2020: Email messages and CallHub initiatives will continue to replace in-person voter registration events. We continue to monitor those voters who must return a hard copy of the FPCA. On the June 16th regional meeting call, it was reported that NY, CT and NJ have now suspended their FPCA hard copy requirement due to covid-19 and will accept FPCAs by email. DA will update votefromabroad.org to enable the photo signature direct email feature for those states. On June 17th, the US Embassy sent out a message that the DPO will accept ballot materials in postage paid envelopes for sending onto the USA and alerted citizens that the time frame is up to four weeks for delivery. We will monitor this option and alert members by email of DPO availability and support by DAGT.

    Movies and other public events are currently on hold, but will resume when the emergency abates and Guatemala opens up again.

    An Independence Day event will not happen this year.

    Covid-19: This month’s discussion centered on the Government of Guatemala’s response, the rising daily case rate, and related statistics. Mary Lou reported that Prensa Libre had published numbers related to the number of active covid patients now at home because hospital space is being reserved for more the more severely ill and a significant number of young children being infected in Guatemala, and in the region. Rachael updated the group on her extended family members infected in Pennsylvania, and their tough road to recovery. John offered some more optimistic information citing data that Guatemala at 64 cases per 100,000 population puts it at number 12 out of 14 countries in Latin America.  Chile is number 1, with 996 cases per 100K, Nicaragua is number 14 with 24 per 100K (but their numbers are highly suspect), compared to the United States at 643 per 100K.

    The DAGT Excom will meet next on Thursday, July 16th, at 11am Guatemala time, via WebEx.

    Travel Notes: All plans are on hold.

    Adjourned: 12:28pm

     

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    May 2020 DAGT Executive Committee Meeting Minutes

    Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

    Executive Committee meeting on Friday, May 22, 2020 at 11:00am via WebEx

    Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Mary Lou Ridinger, Vice Chair; Juan Pablo Aris, Counsel; Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator; Dave Evans, Member-at-Large; Scotney Young, Media Contact; Traci Styner, Lake Atitlán Area Chair; Phyllis MacCartney, member; Anfong Chen, member.

     

    Per our bylaws (paragraph 19.3), all meetings are open to all members. 

    Called to order at 11:05am

    Approval of Agenda and Minutes: Minutes from April meeting and agenda for May meeting were approved.

    Treasurer’s report: Net worth remains unchanged from last month at Q6,408.

    Chair’s Report: John reported on the DAGT 2020 Direct Email Fundraiser that runs to June 15 but currently on hold due to Covid-19. Donations over $35 win a 2020 candidate T shirt. This will restart now with notice of Biden and Bernie tees being available (see below).  (2) Juan Pablo, who served on the Credentials and Rules committee along with Danielle Stampley (DA Canada) and Gil Anav (DA Mexico), for the May 17th Americas Region Convention, reported on the convention in which two delegates, one Biden and one Sanders, were elected to the 2020 Democratic National Convention and one DNC member was elected. Congratulations to Ken Sherman (DA Canada), reelected as Americas Region DNC member for the 2020-2024 term, Tim Ellis (DA Canada), 2020 Sanders delegate, and Miguel Madrigal (DA Costa Rica), 2020 Biden delegate. (3) John mentioned that the CallHub phone banking campaign to DA Guatemala members is still live. The other CallHub campaigns have ended. You can still make some calls to the DAGT campaign. Over 500 calls to DAGT’s 590 members have been completed where 75% have either been answered, a voice message left, and/or a text sent. (4) Ordering tee shirts for Direct Email Fundraiser winners and for sale to members was introduced by John. Model options for both a Biden tee and a Bernie tee were displayed.  Kee moved that DAGT purchase one dozen of the “Biden President” and one dozen of the “Bern it Down” tees. Scotney seconded the motion. During discussion it was mentioned that a list of desired alternatives be kept so that if and when additional orders are placed, they can be considered. The motion passed unanimously. John will place the order with Korey Peterson ASAP. (Note: a day after the meeting Kee and John discussed indications of lukewarm interest in the Bernie tee and decided that the first order will be for the Biden tee only; subsequent orders to include the Bernie model and/or other alternatives).

    Events 2020: Kee reported on get out the vote efforts. An email went out this week reminding members to go to votefromabroad.org to request their overseas absentee ballots. She has gotten a few calls for help, and remains available for continued requests. Kee is monitoring those voters who must also return a hard copy of the FPCA. We will rely on the DPO to the extent we can, but will use alternatives if need be, e.g., DHL.

    Movies and other public events are currently on hold, but will resume when the emergency abates and Guatemala opens up again.

    John mentioned that DAGT should run some paid Facebook ads to alert more American citizens residing in Guatemala to go to votefromabroad.org to request an overseas absentee ballot. He will explore some language and ideas and Scotney will develop them into some attractive ads that can be posted and boosted to a wider audience.  The same items should be placed on Instagram and our FB group page. Scotney will work with Kee to finalize the designs and content.

    Covid-19: As we did last month, participants spent several minutes sharing coronavirus lockdown experiences. Kee updated us on her extended family’s experiences back in New Mexico. Recovery for them has been slow and difficult with the damage done to lungs and other organs. Mary Lou mentioned how hard the shut-down has been for her business and her 45 employees who are furloughed.  She’s waiting for the GOG’s small business financial assistance to arrive. Mary Lou also suggested people look up the work of Jacob Glanville, son of DAGT member David Glanville, whose work on broad-spectrum antivenom is supported by the National Institutes of Health, and more recently his work on anti-SARS-CoV-2 COVID-19 therapeutic antibodies in coordination with other researchers at San Carlos university in Guatemala that is supported by the Gates Foundation among others. Jacob is based in California. There’s a YouTube video on his work and Mary Lou can send the link for anyone interested in learning more about this innovative effort. Mary Lou was asked if Rachael had updated her family’s experience back in the states as well as her work in and around Xela.

    Also joining the meeting today was Anfong Chen, a DAGT member who resides in Guatemala City. She introduced herself and said she’s been in Guatemala for nine years. Her mother is originally from Guatemala and after high school she was interested in learning more about her mother’s home country. An older sister had also lived a number of years here. Anfong spoke little Spanish when she got here, but now, nine years later, is in her last year of medical school at Landiver University. She joined DA in 2016 and voted for Bernie, and is voting again this year through DA. Anfong hopes to return to the states to practice medicine after graduation. Congratulations!!

    As reported earlier, Scotney and her husband returned to Portland, Oregon in early May.  She reported on their experience flying out on United. The flight was full, she said, but everyone was wearing masks and trying hard to keep safe and clean at their seats. She noted how different states are approaching covid-19. In Houston, social distancing was not readily apparent with almost no one wearing a mask and restaurant areas crowded as though it were pre-covid-19. But once in Portland, everyone was wearing a mask and maintaining social distancing norms. Scotney will be in Portland until August when they will move to Washington, DC. She will continue to help us with posts and communications concerns up to the move.

    The DAGT Excom will meet next on Thursday, June 18th, at 11am Guatemala time, via WebEx.

    Travel Notes: All plans are on hold.

    Adjourned: 12:16pm

     

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