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DAGT November 2019 Meeting Minutes

 

Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, November 13, 2019 at 12:00 noon at Café  Teatro El Sitio and via Skype

 

Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Mary Lou Ridinger, Vice Chair; Dave Evans, Member at Large and Treasurer(acting); Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator; and via Skype, Hyungjoon Jin, Member at Large.

 

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

Called to order at 12:04pm

Approval of Agenda and Minutes: Minutes from October meeting and November agenda were approved with additions under Events for 2019 item.

Treasurer’s report: Net worth as of November 13, 2019 is Q4559.

 

Chair’s Report: No responses received to the new recruiting email to fill vacancies for Treasurer and Secretary that went out November 1st, despite 107 members having opened the email. Mary Lou mentioned having met some new people working with NGOs who might be able to join and perhaps volunteer.

Discussed DAGT bylaw amendments to be proposed and voted on by the full membership at DAGT’s Annual General Meeting in 2020.

Membership list cleanup will be emphasized through January; fixing and reinstating bad emails and opt outs is a big push to ensure that global primary outreach is maximized.

Juan Pablo Aris, Counsel, has been asked by International Counsel, Joe Smallhoover, to serve as Deputy Counsel for the Americas region. Juan Pablo has accepted. This will be a good opportunity for Juan Pablo to become acquainted with the bylaws of regional country committees, and their various legal challenges, and of course, become familiar with the Democratic Party Committee Abroad Charter. Congratulations, Juan Pablo!

 

Events for 2019: Next Movie Night will be Friday, November 15th at Casa Convento Concepciٕón at 6:30pm featuring The Inlaws the original from 1979. There will be no movie in December due to holiday parties and travel. We will discuss a title for showing in January.

Voter Registration and GOTV activities for 2020 will start soon.  The DA Global Presidential Primary (GPP) March 3-10, 2020, and voter registration and ballot request activities for the general election on November 3, 2020 are the focus of the coming months. Locally, DAGT has to inform the International Chair of its GPP in-person voting centers by December 31. One will be in Antigua, March 3rd, at Café Condessa from 9:00am to 6:00pm. Kee will confirm with owner/member Ginger Hooven. Kee will also check with Scotney and Hyung about possible in-person voting centers or remote voting assist events in Guatemala City and Lake Atitlán area during GPP week. At the close of in-person voting, all paper ballots must be counted and totals reported by email to the International Chair and then mailed by DHL or other international courier to the International Chair.

Promoting the GPP by FB, email, Website, newspapers, and other means will be very important for maximizing turnout.

GPP guidelines and checklists will be issued by Democrats Abroad once the DA Delegate Selection Plan is approved by the DNC, which is expected shortly.

Voter registration events will begin March 14, 2020, in Antigua. The plan is to hold one per month up to the general election in November. Some will be on weekends and others during the week. Kee will coordinate with Hyung for events around Lake Atitlán.

 

The DAGT Excom will meet on December 17, at 1pm EST, via Skype only.

 

Travel Notes: Mary Lou will be in and out. John will in the USA Nov 21 to December 29, 2019. Hyung will be away December 17 to January 7, 2020.

 

Adjourned: 12:59 pm.

 


DAGT October 2019 Meeting Minutes

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Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, October 17, 2019 at 12:00 noon at Café  Teatro El Sitio and via Skype

Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator; Hyungjoon Jin, Member at Large; Sheryl Larson, Member; and via Skype, Scotney Young, Media Contact; and Juan Pablo Aris, Counsel.

 

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

Called to order at 11:59

Approval of Agenda and Minutes: Minutes from September meeting and October agenda were approved with spelling corrections.

Treasurer’s report: Current balance is Q4538.

Chair’s Report: A new recruiting email for Treasurer and Secretary will go out in November. Also needed are MeetUp Group chair for Guatemala City and start-up leader for Huehuetenango. Scotney said she continues to talk to friends and acquaintances for interest in joining DAGT and their interest in one of the open positions especially MeetUp Chair for Guatemala City.

Amending DAGT bylaws to coincide with DPCA charter on officer elections and terms of office is under consideration and other amendments so that DAGT’s bylaws are consistent with the DPCA Charter. Proposed amendments would be voted on by the full membership at DAGT’s Annual General Meeting in 2020.

All DAGT members should join DA’s Hispanic Caucus chaired by Michael Ramos, DA Australia. Join the Hispanic Caucus at: https://www.democratsabroad.org/hc.  In addition to bringing issues of importance to light, Michael has launched a series of Podcasts of interest to caucus members and DA members alike. Podcasts can be heard at: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/democrats-abroad-hispanic-caucus-podcast/id1476121999.

Events for 2019:Next Movie Night will be Thursday, October 24th featuring Black Klansman at Casa Convento Concepciٕón at 6:30pm. Fahrenheit 11/9 will be featured November 19th.

Voter registration events will begin again in January 2020, to be held monthly up to the general election in November.

Debate Watch Party- October 15th.  Thanks to Kee and Dave for hosting the watch party. Despite heavy rain and 12 candidates over three hours of debate, eight hardy Democrats showed up to share the spectacle. Attendees were in agreement that this was the best debate so far with questions and answers more focused on substance than on show. The DNC will offer a debate in November, with the date, place and participating candidates to be determined. Dave and Kee will again host.

Americas Region News: Americas Regional Meeting to be held October 25 - 26, 2019 in San Jose, Costa Rica. The meeting, originally scheduled for in-person attendees only, is now available via Webex. Via Webex, John and Kee will participate both Friday and Saturday, and Scotney will participate on Saturday. Other members of the Excom and the general membership interested in getting involved in the 2020 election are encouraged to join in. Here is a link to sign-up. https://forms.gle/sa7MBrkwBtc7uvsw8. Webex participants are asked to contribute $10 for one day or $15 for both days to help cover digital transmission costs, donations accepted via Paypal to demoratsabroadcostarica@gmail.com.  Friday’s agenda, after introductions and opening remarks, features the Global Primary, Communications timeline and rules, and Ballot Request/Registration processes; Saturday’s agenda will stress phone banking, the Delegate Selection Plan and conventions to elect delegates from DA to the National Convention in Milwuakee, and Communications Outreach and Talking Points.

DAGT November Excom meeting: Thursday, November 14th, 12:00 noon at Café Teatro El Sitio and via Skype.

Travel Notes: Mary Lou will be in and out. John will in the USA Nov 21 to December 29, 2019.

 

Adjourned: 1:01pm.

 


DA September Updates

SEPTEMBER UPDATES FROM DEMOCRATS ABROAD!

 

We're in, we're out, we're in... Universal Postal Agreement

Good news for our voters this fall - after very intense negotiations in Geneva this week, the US did not pull out of the Universal Postal Union. The not so good news - postal rates for mail delivery to the US will go up, rate details still unknown. Here's the story  

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From Tom’s Desk

Check out DNC Chair Tom Perez on The Electables podcast talking about impeachment and see what else he has been up to here

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In case you missed it... DA conversation with Mayor Pete

Democrats Abroad is trying to schedule conversations with all the Democratic candidates. If you missed our first candidate call yesterday with Mayor Pete, we've got you covered. Here's the video link

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Democrats Abroad Global Presidential Primary 

Still haven't had time to check out the Democrats Abroad ballot access petition process but have 5 minutes now? Democrats Abroad has just launched our petitions platform for Democratic presidential candidates who want to add their name to our primary ballot next year.

Here's your handy link to the petition platform

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Update from the Taxation Task Force: 

The Federal Passport Revocation Policy that was enacted as part of the 2015 FAST Act has come into effect. The IRS is providing the State Department with the names of persons with outstanding and unresolved federal tax debts of $52,000 or more. Those being subjected to this provision should have been provided with notice and opportunities to cure under the policy's implementation rules.     The Tax Task Force  felt the rules had a good chance of protecting Americans abroad but ask that you keep an ear to the ground and let us know if you hear of Americans abroad who have had their passports revoked or have had their application for a passport denied as a result of this policy. Please send comments or questions to taxationtf@democratsabroad.org.

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September Minutes for DAGT Executive Committee Meeting

Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, September 19, 2019 at 12:00 noon at El Sitio Café and via Skype

Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Mary Lou Ridinger, Vice Chair; Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator, and via Skype, Scotney Young, Media Contact.

 

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

Called to order at 12:06

Approval of Agenda and Minutes: Minutes from August meeting and September agenda were approved

Treasurer’s report: Current balance is unchanged at Q4428.

Chair’s Report: A new recruiting email for Treasurer and Secretary will go out in November.

Also needed, MeetUp Group chair for Guatemala City and start one in Huehuetenango.

Mary Lou, stressed that DAGT needs new and younger leadership to ensure the integrity of our country committee going forward. Scotney said she would canvass friends and acquaintances for interest in joining DAGT and if already members, their interest in one of the open positions.

Amending DAGT bylaws to coincide with DPCA charter on officer elections and terms of office is under consideration. Paragraph14.1 should be amended at the Annual General Meeting in March 2020.

Events for 2019

Movie Night Thursday, September 26th. Matewan will be shown at CCC on at 6:30pm. Kee will send out a promotional email. Black Klansman will be shown October 24th and Fahrenheit 11/9 will be featured November 19th.

Debate Watch Party- September 12th.  Thanks to Kee and Dave for hosting. Mary Lou commented that the watch parties are best when well attended and there is a chance to discuss among participants their perceptions, comments and clarifications.

The next debate will be over two nights, October 15th and 16th, to take place at Otterbein University in Westerville, Ohio, and will feature 11 candidates. If one of the 11 candidates drops out before the 15th, the debate will be for only one night. Kee and Dave have offered to host a watch party again for October.

Fund Raisers: DAGT bumper sticker campaign and other items including buttons and swag received from DA Germany will be for sale at the movie night and debate watch parties. John will provide Kee a price list for the new items received from DA Germany.

Americas Region News: (1) Americas Regional Meeting to be held October 25 - 26, 2019 in San Jose, Costa Rica. Guatemala, Chile and Peru are the only country committees in the region not attending. (2) Monthly updates for verifying older members will continue. Country committees find this approach more efficient than waiting for one big effort in January.

DAGT October Excom meeting: Thursday, Oct 17th, 12:00 noon at El Sitio and via Skype.

Travel Notes: Kee and Dave will be in West Virginia from o/a 26 October to o/a 11 November. Mary Lou will be in and out. Hyung will be in New Jersey Sep 29 to Oct 2.

 

Adjourned: 1:46pm.


August DAGT Excom Meeting Minutes

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Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala

Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, August 15, 2019 at 12:00 noon at El Sitio Café and via Skype

Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator; Dave Evans, Acting Treasurer; and via Skype Hyungjoon Jin, Member at Large, Scotney Young, Media Contact, and Aimee Van Cleave, US Peace Corps Volunteer

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

Call to order : 12:06pm

Approval of Agenda and Minutes: July minutes and August agenda approved.

Treasurer’s report:  Our balance as of August 15 is Q4428 (after adding back in Q95 unspent for July 18 Movie Night).

Chair’s Report:  Aimee Van Cleave, a newly active Peace Corps Volunteer in Guatemala, was introduced as GOTV liaison with Peace Corps Volunteers in Guatemala.  Following several months of language and cross cultural training, Aimee was recently assigned to her post in San Antonio Aguas Calientes, and to her new job with the Ministry of Agriculture. Prior to joining Peace Corps, Aimee worked for the Association of State Democratic Committees (ASDC), covering western states. The mission of the ASDC is to help build strong state parties in order to elect Democrats from the State House to the White House. Prior to ASDC, Aimee served as Executive Director for the Wyoming State Democratic Party. She also has campaign experience around the United States, which among the more significant ones is that of Sen. Maggie Hassan’s of New Hampshire. Aimee will work with Kee on out-reach to the 150 Peace Corps Volunteers in Guatemala and to the extended NGO community that Peace Corps works with. Welcome Aimee!

Another recruitment email to replace our Secretary and Treasurer will go out in November, after the Democratic presidential candidate field has thinned a bit and corresponding enthusiasm has begun to pick up. Filling the Guatemala City MeetUp Group chair and establishment of one in Huehuetenango remains active.

Counsel, Juan Pablo Aris, got stuck in traffic near Barcenas and was unable to make the meeting, and therefore was unable to report on amending the DAGT bylaws. We will look for that report next month.

Events for 2019: The next Movie Night will feature Matewan to be presented in September, at Casa Convento Concepción, date and time TBD. Sound issue remains to be addressed. A small amplifier which should correct the problem will arrive in country September 5th. We decided that a return to a regular monthly schedule of films is the best way to maintain interest. Another showing of Fahrenheit 11/9 will be set for October, date TBD.

Debate Watch Party: The next debate will be take place September 12th to be held in Houston, TX. Dave and Kee have offered to host a watch party at their home.

Fund Raisers: Democrats Abroad Guatemala bumper sticker campaign continues to go very well. Stickers are available for purchase at movie night, debate watch parties and voter registration events as long as supplies last, at Q20 each or three for Q50. Scotney has designed a Facebook challenge for best display of the bumper sticker. Kee and Scotney will continue to encourage member participation in the challenge.

2019 FPCA promotion: Kee and Scotney have been discussing filming one or more short videos on the preparation of your FPCA.

Americas Regional Meeting: To be held October 25 - 26, 2019 in San Jose, Costa Rica. Focus is GOTV and DA tools to enhance GOTV work including training on VoteFromAbroad.Org and approaches on outreach to voters. Americas Regional Meeting to be held October 25 - 26, 2019 in San Jose, Costa Rica. Focus is GOTV and DA tools to enhance GOTV work including training on VoteFromAbroad.Org and approaches on outreach to voters. DAGT’s representatives? The next regular monthly meeting will be September 19th via Webex at 3pm Guatemala time. A reminder and login information will be shared with the DAGT Excom prior to this meeting.

DAGT September Excom meeting: Thursday, September 19th at 12:00 noon local time, at El Sitio café in Antigua and on Skype

Travel Notes: Scotney will be traveling to the USA Sept 5-16. Hyung will be away in Texas, September 19-22, and in New Jersey September 29 to October 2.

Adjourned: 1:14 pm


DNC Chair Tom Perez in Mexico!

On September 28th, DNC Chair Tom Pérez will be in Mexico City for exclusive events, sharing ideas about 2020 strategy and helping to empower Democratic voters abroad. This is a unique chance to get an up-close view of how Democrats are working to build a better, brighter, fairer future for everyone.

 

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Don’t miss this opportunity to hear about everything going into the fight against Donald Trump. In this crucial election, we need everyone educated, engaged and energized. Join us!

 

Saturday, September 28 | 9:30 am

Join Chairman Perez for breakfast. This will be a larger event with plenty of energy. Get your day going by meeting like-minded Democrats and sharing the excitement about organizing and mobilizing voters everywhere. 

Details attached; please RSVP here:

 

 

Saturday, September 28 | 7:00 pm

You are cordially invited to an intimate dinner featuring Chairman Perez and capped at just 25 attendees. Enjoy a splendid meal and get a front-row seat as we share ideas about the fight ahead and how we win in 2020. 

Details attached; please RSVP here:

 

 

The race to defeat Donald Trump is in full swing and the DNC is hard at work building the strength and the organization to support our nominee from the moment they accept the nomination. We know Republicans will stop at nothing to hand tax cuts to billionaires, take away your healthcare, roll back environmental regulations and target immigrants. That’s why we must win back the White House, take back the Senate, and flip statehouses across the country.


If you are in Mexico and are interested in joining our team of passionate and dedicated volunteers, fill out the form here:

 

 


4th of July photos and July Meeting Minutes

First, a HUGE gracias a todos/todas for your support and participation in this year's 4th of July Sundowner! 
With over 80 attendees (more details in the minutes below) it was a great time!! 

 

Read more

Summer Updates

 

Lights for Liberty Online Vigil – July 12th

Lights for Liberty will hold a national march and vigil on July 12th to shed light on what is happening at the US southern border and across the country: undocumented immigrants and asylum seekers being held in detention centers, facing inhumane conditions and continuing to be separated from their families.

Join our online vigil to stand with detainees, asylum seekers, and immigrant families.

Take a picture with the attached Lights for Liberty sign (fill in your details) and a lit candle, then post your pic on social media with the hashtags #LightsforLiberty#ClosetheCamps, and #DAResists tagging @DemsAbroad and @DmeocratsAbroadGuatemala

Learn more about getting involved here: https://www.democratsabroad.org/lights_for_liberty?fbclid=IwAR3kGt-c6vBh8fgJp3_WG8hAhuv7vjMu8Kry5ajMObKPYNhEFv3xLNi4be4

New Podcast from DA Hispanic Caucus

This week the Democrats Abroad Hispanic Caucus welcomed polyglot and foreign affairs expert Jana Nelson (Twitter: @anajanaina) as a special guest on our podcast. Jana has considerable experience as a congressional staff member, professional researcher, and working in diplomacy at the State Department. Among her many areas of specialized knowledge, Jana spoke about the various services provided by U.S. embassies and consulates which are available to U.S. citizens living or traveling abroad.

Listen here: https://www.podomatic.com/podcasts/dahispaniccaucus/episodes/2019-06-25T00_38_05-07_00

Notes from DNC Executive Committee Meeting in Pittsburgh


The DNC Executive Committee met on Saturday, June 29 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The Executive Committee heard from a number of elected officials as well. Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey was the special guest speaker and spoke on the work that she and other Democratic Attorneys General across the country are doing to fight back against the Trump administration on a number of fronts – from immigration to the environment to, most recently, the U.S. Census.

Chair Tom Perez provided remarks during the meeting and gave an update on the work the DNC is doing as we build toward elections in 2019 and 2020.

DNC Chief Technology Officer Nell Thomas and DNC Security Data Analyst Tim Durigan presented to the Executive Committee on the DNC’s data infrastructure and on disinformation campaigns and terminology. Tim explained that DNC members observing inauthentic or suspicious activity affecting Democrats on social media, including but not limited to fake accounts, manipulated video, viral false news, harassment, impersonation, and doxxing should report it in the platform and contact the DNC at disinfo@dnc.org

There were two resolutions that were introduced during the old/new business portion of the meeting. In order to follow the official process, the Executive Committee moved to refer both resolutions to the Resolution Committee for consideration. 

The meeting adjourned at 12:16 p.m. The next Executive Committee meeting will take place in San Francisco in conjunction with our full DNC meeting.

National Disability Voter Registration Week

In 2020, approximately 23% of the American electorate — over 35 million individuals — will be people with disabilities. Your vote affects everything. Who you vote for impacts your civil rights and direct access to health care, education, transportation, housing and the list goes on and on. We encourage you to participate in our non-partisan REV UP campaign to increase the political power & civic participation of the disability community while also engaging candidates and the media on disability issues.

AAPD’s REV UP Campaign coordinates National Disability Voter Registration Week (NDVRW) each year on the third week of July, and we are excited that many of our state partners are hosting events! This year, NDVRW is July 15 - 19. Please check out our website for updates on local events.

Won't be able to attend an event? We INVITE everyone to participate in our REV UP twitter storm! This is a great way to spread more awareness about the Disability Vote and encourage folks to register to vote online. 

On Tuesday, July 16th from 2pm - 3pm EST we would love to see everyone tweeting (or posting on Facebook) about NDVRW through hashtag #REVUP and #DisabilityVote.

You can utilize sample posts and graphics from the NDVRW social media kit. Please reach out to Keri Gray, keri@aapd.com, if you have any questions.

Submit Info on NDVRW Events!

Mueller Report

Have you read the Mueller Report? Find ways to read it and reasons why you should here:

https://www.democratsabroad.org/de_read_the_mueller_report


DAGT June Meeting Minutes

Please find attached the minutes from our June 13th meeting via Skype here. We are moving ahead with Debate Watch Party June 26&27, July 4th Sundowner, and Movie Nite July 17th preparations.

Hope to see you all there!


Democrats Abroad Annual Meeting 2019 Report

By DA Guatemala Chair John Chudy

The Democratic Party Committee Abroad (DPCA), the governing body of Democrats Abroad and the formal organization that represents Democrats Abroad as one of the 57 state and territorial parties comprising the Democratic Party of the United States of America, held its annual global meeting in Washington, DC May 17 to 19, 2019. The venue was the 20F Street conference center near Capitol Hill. Many of the approximately 220 Democrats Abroad members from 45 country committees who attended the DPCA global meeting, stayed on to participate in two days of door knocking on Capitol Hill May 20 and 21.

The annual meeting agenda included the normal business of officer and committee reports, as well as the election of international officers (chair, vice chair, secretary, treasurer and counsel) and the election of three regional vice chairs. In addition, the meeting also entertained discussion and debate on a variety of resolutions representing policy positions of the DPCA which included the approval of a Medicare for All resolution in support of the House bill presented by Rep. Jayapal, and several proposed amendments to the bylaws that form the DPCA’s Charter. Another important component of the agenda presented the DPCA’s planning efforts for the 2020 election cycle with respect to communications planning, platform content, the DPCA’s Global Presidential Primary, the DPCA’s global convention, 2020 Get Out the Vote planning, and Delegate Selection Plan for electing DPCA delegates to the 2020 Democratic National Convention that will take place in Milwaukee July 13-16, 2020. Details of meeting results and actions can be found at: https://wiki.democratsabroad.org/display/WashDC2019/Washington+DC%2C+DPCA+Global+Meeting+2019+Home

A highlight of the three-day conference was the appearance of guest speakers. Several came in person, while others appeared either live via video conference or videos made especially for our meeting. In-person speakers included presidential candidates Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and Marianne Williamson, and from the DNC Jason Rae, Vice Chair and the youngest person ever elected to the DNC, Seema Nanda, CEO of the DNC, Liz Jaff, the DNC’s director of technical infrastructure, and from the Association of State Democratic Chairs (ASDC), Ken Martin, and finally, Josh Handelman, from the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (the group associated with the DNC that works to elect Democrats to state legislative bodies).  Live video hookup brought us encouraging words from Sen. Doug Jones , Alabama, and video presentations made for Democrats Abroad were provided from the campaigns of Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden.  All of the presentations were inspiring for their focus on 2020 and getting out the vote to elect Democrats at all levels. If there was one common message across all the speakers, it was that in 2020 we must not let the perfect become the enemy of the good, that is, we must vote for the Democratic Party’s nominee in the general election, even if that person is not our preference at the outset of the primary season. As Ken Martin pointed out, many Democrats stayed home in 2016 because they felt let down by the outcome of the primary season; we cannot let that happen in 2020, lest we want to extend our national nightmare another four years.

The two-day door knock activity was directed at bringing three policy topics of interest to Democrats Abroad to the attention of House and Senate members and their staffs. The three items were: The closure of 22 US Citizenship and Immigration (USCIS) offices which complicates a number of actions affecting wait times for family reunification leading to permanent separation; HR1, a House bill intended to improve voting efficiency by requiring a durable voter-verified paper ballot, but which can lead to voter suppression for overseas voters with no access to postal service, e.g., Guatemala; Expatriate Tax Reform to encourage Residence Based Taxation in place of the Citizenship Based Taxation system that the USA now employs, apply Same Country Exemption for FATCA, and support for the Social Security Fairness Act which repeals the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP). See more details about these three issues in their respective briefs found at: https://wiki.democratsabroad.org.

Meet your new DPCA international Executive Committee:

Back row, L to R: Will Bakker (Belgium), Regional Vice Chair, for Europe, Middle East, Africa; Alex Montgomery (Hong Kong), International Vice Chair; Jeffrey Cheng (Sweden), International Secretary; Kat Allikian, (New Zealand) Regional Vice Chair for Asia Pacific; Joe Smallhoover (France), International Counsel. Front row L to R: Kathy Rothschild (Costa Rica), Regional Vice Chair for the Americas; Julia Bryan (Czech Republic), International Chair; Lissette Wright (Canada), International Treasurer.