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In This Issue
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For Sponsorship information, contact Bonnie Lassen.
March Discussion Units:
How Can We Practice Civil Discourse?

The San Luis Obispo League has been working for three years to help the public find some means of talking to people with opposing views, and they came to share their insights at the February Community Forum. As a follow-up we would like to continue to talk with our members about how to have reasonable discussions with those who disagree with us. Sometimes they are relatives or neighbors, and it is important that we try new approaches. See the Calendar on   our website for unit dates and places.
Community Forum: Keeping People With Mental Illness Out of Jail
Wednesday, March 15--noon to 2 pm
Faulkner Gallery, Santa Barbara Library

The number of people with mental illness in U.S. jails has reached crisis levels. The League of Women Voters of Santa Barbara and the Santa Barbara Public Library are co-hosting a forum to discuss this crisis.

Panelists are: Suzanne Grimmesey of the Behavioral Wellness Department; Lt. Rob Plastino of the Sheriff's Office; Kelly Scott of the District Attorney's Office; Tracy Macuga and Deedra Edgar of the Public Defender's Office; Lynne Gibbs of NAMI; AnnMarie Cameron of the Mental Wellness Center; Suzanne Riordan of Families ACT; Maureen Earls of CLUE; and Debbie McCoy, who will share her personal experience.

In counties across the nation, jails now have more people with mental illnesses than in their psychiatric hospitals. Almost three-quarters of these adults have drug and alcohol use problems. Community members with mental illnesses continue to cycle through the criminal justice system with tragic outcomes for themselves and their families, missed opportunities for connections to treatment, inefficient use of funding, and a failure to improve public safety.

These obstacles to change in Santa Barbara County have prompted the County Supervisors to commit to positive plans.  

Participants are welcome to bring their lunch. The entrance to the nearest parking garage is on Anacapa, adjacent to the Library. Handicapped access is at the Anapamu entrance (park in the Granada Garage across from the Library on Anapamu St.).
The League of Women Voters does not support or oppose candidates or political parties. The League encourages informed and active participation in government and influences public policy through education and advocacy.

As a service to our members who want information about the SB Progressive Coalition, Indivisible, and other local meetings and events, we are directing you to the Fund for Santa Barbara's Community Calendar.
Sustainable Communities Committee
To Meet at Maravilla Senior Residence

Our March 10 meeting will be at 10 a.m. at the Maravilla Senior Living Community, 5486 Calle Real, Santa Barbara. Discussion will be about a Ventura pilot project on converting sewage to drinkable water.

The April and May meetings will also be at Maravilla. For more information, contact Connie Hannah, Chair, Sustainable Communities

The February-March Channel Voter is Online.

Find out more about what happening in the League, including community forum and discussion units and information about state and national issues.  
We were happy to see so many people at our February Community Forum on civil discourse. I hope to see many of you again at our March 15 forum, which will again be co-sponsored by the Santa Barbara Public Library. 


Lindsey Baker, Co-President
League of Women Voters of Santa Barbara 

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