Braille Monitor               May 2023

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Resolution Reminders

by Donald Porterfield

Donald PorterfieldFrom the Editor: One of the toughest jobs one can have at our national convention is to chair the National Federation of the Blind’s Resolutions Committee. Our longtime chair Sharon Maneki did a wonderful job, one performed with such distinction that many Federationists have never known another person to occupy this job. Work starts before the convention with advertising the process, where to send resolutions, and the deadline for receiving them. Then the chair must detail the exceptions—oh yes, we must have exceptions when we have rules. Then comes seeing that each resolution’s meaning is clear, that the grammar is correct, and then getting the resolutions to the committee for its consideration and possible changes prior to the convention. Next comes chairing the committee meeting, seeing that all of the resolutions are read and voted on, and then getting them to the staff who will be responsible for moving them forward so they become the reality we want.

Donald Porterfield is the new chair of this committee. Like many new folks, he has large shoes to fill, but he is smart, enthusiastic, and very accustomed to doing a lot of work. Here is what he has to say about the resolutions process:

Do you want to make a difference in the lives of blind people today and in the future? Do you think we should change a government policy, take a stand concerning an agency for the blind, or create new regulations? If you do, consider writing a resolution. Here are a few reminders to help you, as well as some questions to think about when writing a resolution.

  1. Has a resolution already been written on your subject? If so, are you really adding something new?
  2. Is the resolution necessary, or would a letter from the National President accomplish your goal? For example, a letter from the National President commending an organization might be a better alternative than a resolution.
  3. Did you do your research to ensure the accuracy of the resolution?
  4. If the subject of the resolution would be of interest to a division, did you discuss your resolution with the division president?

If you need some pointers on the format or construction of a resolution, consult the article “Time to Write Resolutions” in the May 2021 edition of the Braille Monitor.

Please be mindful of our deadlines. To ensure that your resolution will be considered by the committee, please send it to President Riccobono or to me by June 1, 2023, one month before the committee meeting. Since things are always busy leading up to the convention, we appreciate you sending them earlier. If you send a resolution to me by email and do not receive a response acknowledging your email in two or three days, please call me at 520-850-2180 or send it again. If you miss the deadline, you must get three members of the committee to sponsor your resolution and then get it to the chairman before the meeting begins. I will be pleased to accept resolutions by email at [email protected] or by mail at 7360 E. Vactor Ranch Trl, Tucson, AZ 85715.

All resolutions will be placed on the NFB website shortly before the committee meets at convention on July 1. This procedure will give the membership a chance to look over the resolutions before the meeting and lobby the committee members to support or defeat the resolutions.

The job of the membership is to make sure the committee has resolutions to consider. I look forward to receiving your resolution.

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