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It's Time to Take Action

You can make a big difference in just 5 minutes.  With FCLCA’s Legislative Action Center, that’s all it takes to learn about the issues and send an email to your elected officials.

Join our Action Network »

We’ll send you important updates on legislation and make it easy for you to contact your legislators.

Become a contributing member »

For just $60 a year ($35 low income) you can help bring your voice of conscience to the Capitol. 

Check out our Action Center »

Send an email to your elected officials.  Follow the bills we are working on in this legislative session.

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Frequently Asked Questions

 

What do you do – in a nutshell?

We lobby at the Capitol in Sacramento– we have a registered lobbyist who keeps track of what bills are being written, heard in committee and voted on. We co-sponsor bills, usually in coalition with other organizations. That means we help originate the bill, work with the author (the legislator who carries the bill) to help get it passed by both houses of the Legislature and signed by the governor. For other legislation, we monitor bills introduced in the Legislature and choose bills that we think will be of interest to our supporters and that we feel are important to act on in accordance with our policy statements.  Then we write letters of support or opposition, testify at committee hearings and meet with individual legislators and their staff at the Capitol. We also make sure legislators hear from their constituents by making it easy for people like you to communicate with your representatives.  We help you lobby so that your voice can be heard on important issues..  Many times we work in coalition with other organizations to have a stronger impact.  Read more.

Who do you represent?

Unlike a lot of lobbyists you may have heard about, we don’t represent the interests of one particular group or business.  We strive to put forward the public interest and to make sure our laws respect the worth of every person, including those who have been the most marginalized – those who often have no voice. We strive to "bring a voice of conscience" to the legislative process.

We were founded by Quakers in 1952 and our values are those of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).  We are open to all and our supporters include people of all faiths and backgrounds.

Who are the “Friends”?

See here.

What kind of issues do you work on?

We’re known for our expertise and focus on criminal justice reform. The bills we co-sponsor are typically in this area.  We also advocate action on bills introduced in other areas.  In the 2017-18 legislative session, we will be focusing on criminal justice reform, immigration and civil rights, economic justice and environmental justice. Read more here.

How can I interact with your group?

Well, since you’re already on our site, you can go here and register for our free Action Network.  We’ll send you an Action Alert when something important is happening at the Capitol – we’ll make it easy for you to find and communicate with your legislator.

We hope you’ll become a contributing member – basic membership is $60 and low-income is $35. Donations of any size are welcome and appreciated.  As a contributing member, you’ll receive our FCLCA Newsletter and the confidence that you have a lobby of conscience in Sacramento.  Welcome!

Testimonials

 

FCLCA has an expert, experienced, hard-working team in Sacramento. I turn to them regularly for advice and help. My sense is that FCLCA is an organization strongly grounded in the core values that drive its work.  California is a better place because of it.   

Elizabeth Calvin, Human Rights Watch

 

For two years, FCLCA supported the ban the box effort which resulted in the passage and signing of AB 218—a bill that will help millions of Californians with criminal records have a fair shot at public employment.  FCLCA was a key part of our broad-based coalition of over 130 groups and provided critical legislative expertise in Sacramento when it was most needed.  We are grateful for Jim Lindburg’s insight and support, which helped us achieve this significant victory. 

Michelle Natividad Rodriguez, Staff Attorney, National Employment Law Project

 

Thank you so much for the work done on SB9 and SB260. Without your efforts our son wouldn't have a second chance. Every holiday, family gathering, marriage, child born, graduation, even vacations are not fully enjoyed. There is someone missing. Seventeen years have gone painfully by. I pray for the day his debt will be paid. Thank-you for making that possible.

Mother of a prisoner sentenced to life without parole at 16

Quakers and FCLCA

Who are the “Quakers”?

The Religious Society of Friends, also called Quakers, emerged as a Christian denomination in England in the 1600’s.  Quakers are possibly best known for their “Peace Testimony” – their belief in nonviolence and their opposition to war.

For hundreds of years,  Quakers have spoken out in support of legislation and good government practices that embody the Quaker testimonies of peace, simplicity, equality, community and integrity.  Read more.

One of the deeply held beliefs of  Friends (Quakers) is that there is inherent worth in every human being.  Peace, therefore, is not just the absence of war, but requires a just society that recognizes this inherent worth. Friends actively engage in the politics of their society to bring a voice of conscience – there is no separation between beliefs and deeds.

Friends were among the founders of many prominent social justice organizations, including Greenpeace, American Friends Service Committee, and Amnesty International, and served as leaders in the abolitionist, women’s rights and civil rights movements.

More information about Quakers and the Religious Society of Friends here and here.  And a very informative (and funny) site by British Quakers here.

Find a Quaker Meeting near you here.

How is FCLCA connected to the Quakers?

FCLCA’s founders were Friends who believed that a voice of conscience, based on Quaker testimonies, was urgently needed in California’s capitol.  FCLCA is governed by a General Committee composed of representatives of many of the unprogrammed Quaker Meetings in California who are part of the Pacific Yearly Meeting, and two Friends churches, Berkeley Friends Church and Whittier Friends Church, as well as non-Quaker members.

Our lobbying and positions are based on policy statements developed by our General Committee, which in turn are based on the values contained in the Quaker testimonies.  Within this context, FCLCA speaks for itself and for likeminded Friends and supporters. No organization can speak officially for the Religious Society of Friends.

It’s important to note that a number of FCLCA’s key supporters, staff, donors and volunteers – including board members and lobbyists – are not members of the Society of Friends.  They are like-minded people who share the values that inform our work.  We warmly welcome people of all backgrounds and beliefs.

I attend a Quaker Meeting; how can I get more involved?

That’s great!  A first step would be to contact your Meeting clerk to see if your Meeting has a representative to FCLCA.  If so, contact the representative to get more information on how you and your Meeting can support our work.  If not, please contact us directly at kevan@fclca.org or (916)443-3734. And check out the steps to become more involved here.

FCL Education Fund

 

FCLCA’s sister organization, the FCL Education Fund, was created in 1984. The FCL Education Fund supports nonpartisan educational activities that reflect the values of Friends, including research, publications, workshops, and presentations in furtherance of social justice and informed citizen participation in state government. We believe that the people of California should be educated about the issues facing our state and have the tools and information they need to promote positive social change.

FCL Education Fund presents Bring Your Voice - a comprehensive guide to grassroots lobbying and the state legislature

To encourage people to participate in the representative system of government and to help educate them on how to effectively weigh in on state legislation, the FCL Education Fund created  a comprehensive guide called  Bring Your Voice: FCLCA's Guidebook to Grassroots Lobbying and the California Legislature, available online.  For information on receiving hard copies or possible trainings based on the guidebook, call us at (916) 443-3734.

Make a tax-deductible contribution to the FCL Education Fund

Because the FCL Education Fund is a charity with an educational purpose and mission, contributions in support of the Fund are deductible to the extent provided by Section 501(c)(3) if the U.S. Code of Internal Revenue.  Our tax ID number is 68-0062639.  Making a gift of appreciated stock may have tax advantages to you - see more here.

FCL Education Fund Board of Directors 2017

Stephen Myers, Chair, Sacramento Friends Meeting

James Alexander, Vice Chair, Redwood Forest Friends Meeting

Vicki Carroll, Secretary, Central Coast Friends Meeting

George Millikan, Berkeley Friends Meeting

Elizabeth Ralston, Santa Monica Friends Meeting

Steve Birdlebough, Redwood Forest Friends Meeting

Carolyn Keys, Sacramento Friends Meeting

Jim Eusebio, Davis Friends Meeting

Karsten Van Sander, Santa Monica Friends Meeting

Peter Neumann, Santa Barbara Friends Meeting

Shelley Tanenbaum, Strawberry Creek Friends Meeting

Norman Skonovd, At-large

Ellen Eggers, At-large