Elevating Women in Politics, from Galax to Gainesville



Dear NWPC-VA Members,

Young activists are fired up, and we are ready to stand with them for positive change.

There have been many examples lately of GenZ and Millenials showing up and just handling things. The recent Midterm Election comes to mind. While the data nerds are still crunching all the numbers, the prevailing narrative is that people aged 18-30 voted in large numbers, and in some cases, completely canceled out the choices from regressive voters aged 60+. Meanwhile, young Iranians, mostly women, have been protesting the decades-old mandatory hijab for an astonishing nine weeks, since the death of Mahsa Amini at the hands of the “Guidance Patrol.” And teenagers Greta Thunberg, Xiya Bastida, and Kallan Benson, among others, have been holding Fridays for Future and raising awareness about our dying planet. 

Here in Virginia, young people too have been stepping up and speaking out. GenerationRatifyVa, a youth-led group focused on getting the Equal Rights Amendment published, organized walkouts at over ninety Virginia high schools and colleges in response to the leak of the Dobbs decision in May. 

Whether it is through visible protests, such as the state-wide walkouts, or seemingly small acts, such as creating a “period pantry” which distributes free period products to combat “period poverty,” Virginia’s young people are ready to lead. And just in time. General Assembly 2023 begins January 11. There are many crucial issues facing all Virginians, and in particular, young Virginians. Whether it’s a proposed 11-week abortion ban, public school policies, or access to clean air and water, you can bet that young advocates will make their voices heard during session. 

NWPC-VA is excited to support and amplify these young upstarts. They have been raised to speak up, value human equality, and use their voices for change. 

You can do the same by checking out NWPC-VA’s GA 2023 Policy Priorities and Calls to Action below. In the coming weeks, we will continue to update membership on calls to action, advocacy around the commonwealth, and how to work across generations to make our work more impactful. 

NWPC-VA Board of Directors



Many reproductive healthcare advocates will be watching the General Assembly closely during the upcoming session as Senator Amanda Chase (R-11) has stated publicly that she will be introducing an abortion ban bill. Governor Youngkin has also voiced his support for an 11-week abortion ban bill, indicating he would “eagerly” sign one should it cross his desk.  

Our partners in the Virginia Reproductive Equity Alliance (VREA) have already held one rally at Capitol Square in September, protesting any proposed bans on Virginians’ freedom. They plan to be very vocal during this session as well. VREA is planning an advocacy day in Richmond in early February and will be organizing other ways citizens can contact their legislators to preserve abortion access. This coalition of 14 grassroots organizations also has plans to introduce a constitutional amendment protecting the right to abortion.

As GA 2023 draws near, members should be sure to watch their email and NWPC-VA social media for updates.

This year, NWPC-VA will be supporting and amplifying the maternal health bills put forth by Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy. Members can find those bills here.


Dora Muhammad from Virginia Interfaith will be leading training sessions on how to speak with legislators about these bills. Watch your email and our socials in the coming weeks for details.

Delegate Head and Delegate Maldanado will be co-patrons for bills in the House, while Senator Hashmi and Senator Locke will be co-patrons in the Senate. Other legislators working on this legislation are Senators McClellan and Dunnavant, Delegates Nadarius Clark and Dawn Adams.

NWPC-VA is concerned about the Youngkin administration's recent proposed revisions to Virginia’s history and social studies standards. We will advocate for legislation which promotes the accurate teaching of history in all schools and oppose legislation which does not, including bills like last year's "divisive concepts" legislation.



Georgia Runoffs: Phone Banking with the Center for Common Ground & Reclaim Our Vote

The Center for Common Ground is calling Black voters in advance of the Dec. 6 runoffs with their early voting locations and other details on how to vote. To join a phone bank, go to https://www.centerforcommonground.org/phonebanks or contact ROV.DCMV@gmail.com.

Postcarding for a Pro-Choice General Assembly 2023

NWPC-VA is partnering with GenRatifyVA in December to get ahead of the bans! Write to your friends and family to let them know that full reproductive health care access could be on the line during General Assembly 2023. Thank you to our friends at Postcards4VA for hosting the link to order postcards here. Order a stack,then schedule your postcard party!

Virginia’s New Public School History Standards: Voice Your Opinion 

The Youngkin administration has received widespread criticism for its proposed new history and social science standards which omitted Martin Luther King Jr. and Juneteenth from the elementary level and referred to Indigenous people as immigrants among other issues. Earlier this month, the Board of Education delayed its review of the standards after hours of outcry from cultural groups, historians and residents at a meeting, with one board member calling the administration’s draft "a disaster." New public input sessions will be held in Northern Virginia, central Virginia, and Southwest Virginia, as well as virtually, from Nov. 28 through Dec. 16  before the standards are finalized. Dates and locations are not available yet but will be published on the VDOE websiteA vote on the new draft is planned for January.


Krysta Jones, NWPC-VA President, 2020-2022

The first two years of NWPC-VA have been filled with excitement and enthusiasm. A group of passionate advocates, on the heels of the statewide victory of getting the Equal Rights Amendment ratified in Virginia, were ready to transfer that determination into long-lasting reform in the commonwealth. How lucky we have been to have Krysta Jones at the helm!

Krysta’s experience as a thought leader and change maker in Virginia, as well as her calm, steady presence, have all been invaluable as our organization’s board navigated setting up a statewide organization in the middle of a pandemic. Her clear-eyed organization and ideas have helped us create foundational documents for our chapter. Krysta has been helpful and responsive to every new board member and vice president as each developed policies and procedures for their committees.  

Every month, Krysta has been asked to contribute an opening letter to the membership in the newsletter. Each time, she hit the right tone, and, in simple, elegant text, expanded on the issue of the moment with clarity and hope. 

Our NWPC chapter in Virginia is forever indebted to Krysta’s leadership and vision. We wish her all the best in her new position as the Director of Congressional and Federal Relations for the American Psychological Association!



This month NWPC-VA salutes eco-justice advocate Karolyn Givens of Newport. For several years she has fought to block the Mountain Valley Pipeline from crossing Virginia’s Shenandoah Region where she makes her home. 

Of her activism, Karolyn says, "I have been and remain engaged in this resistance because, for ethical reasons, I cannot not. Construction of MVP is absolutely and clearly wrong on every single level. It was and is an abuse of eminent domain… it has placed many of us in the blast and evacuation zone. The damage to our waters was inevitable and is real. There is no respect for caves, for the soil on our farmlands, for species of any kind, including endangered--and human as well. Worst of all is the methane produced by fracking gas contributes to climate change… I feel like the Mouse that Roared, but I will stay in the fight for all these reasons and others because it is dead wrong for me not to do so."


Thanks to Karolyn for her bold efforts on behalf of Virginia’s environment and her human and non-human neighbors!



Timeline for Introducing Legislation

at General Assembly 2023

As NWPC-VA gears up for another legislative session in Richmond, note the following important dates for GA 2023.

Dec. 1 - All requests for drafts of legislation to be prefiled to Division of Legislative Services by 5:00 p.m. The DLS is made up of staff attorneys who research each bill’s key issue to see whether it is already covered under existing law, then draft the legislation.

Dec. 30 - All drafts of legislation to be prefiled available for review by senators and delegates by midnight.

Jan. 11 - General Assembly 2023 begins. Each bill is assigned to and discussed in committee, including hearing from members of the public.

Feb. 7 - Crossover. This is the last day for each house to act on its  own legislation before sending it to the other house.

Feb. 20 - The last day for committee action on remaining bills.

Feb. 25 - GA 2023 session adjourns sine die.

Mar. 27 - The last day for the governor to act on legislation.

As the General Assembly approaches, we will update membership via email and through our social media channels regarding bills and calls to action. You can also stay informed by searching this session’s bills (by subject area or bill number) using VPAP’s handy tool.




December 1, 5:30 p.m.: Northwest Regional Meeting (In-Person) 

Northwest members, email Holly Huddle for location details: va.nwpc.northwesternrep@gmail.com. 

December 7, 9:00 a.m.-2:30 p.m.: League of Women Voters of Virginia’s Pre-Session Virginia Legislative Outlook (Online)

Join the LWV-VA along with state and local election officials and representatives from Planned Parenthood, Virginia Education Association, American Association of University Women, and Virginia Poverty Law Center, among others to discuss legislative priorities in this pre-session overview of GA 2023. The event is free, but registration is required.

December 7, 6:00 p.m.:Salon Series–Progress is Not Inevitable; It Takes Work (Online)

Rebecca Solnit is a leading voice in the feminine power space. She has published several books over the past decade. She is widely credited for coining the term “mansplaining” in her 2008 book Men Explain Things to Me. At our December Salon Series, we will be discussing her 2019 article “Progress is Not Inevitable; It Takes Work,” found here. Join us here.


Are you into podcasts and looking for a change of pace? Check out this top 10 list focused on women in politics by the Ascend Fund, an organization committed to accelerating the pace of change toward gender parity in US politics. Favorites include “She Said/She Said” and “The Brown Girl’s Guide to Politics.”



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