Planning a Warrant article nhlta 2014

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This presentation provides community-based strategies for preparing your library community for a Town Hall meeting or SB2 Deliberative Session including coalition building. John Chrastka presented "Campaigning for Your Warrant Article" on May 19, 2004 at the New Hampshire Library Trustees annual conference in Concord.

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  • Planning a Warrant article nhlta 2014

    1. 1. Planning a Warrant Article Community Asset Building NHLTA 2014 @everylibrary Building voter support for libraries John Chrastka Executive Director EveryLibrary john.chrastka@everylibrary.org
    2. 2. About EveryLibrary Founded on the fact that libraries, as public entities, cannot expend their own funds to do electioneering. “Info-Only” is allowed. The IRS "caps" spending by Associations and other 501c3 charities for lobbying. Building voter support for libraries
    3. 3. About EveryLibrary Set up as a 501c4 Social Welfare Organization chartered to support library ballot measures. Includes our support for legislation that impacts the ability of libraries to function as districts. Building voter support for libraries
    4. 4. About EveryLibrary EveryLibrary works with libraries to plan effective voter engagement: ● Pre-planning and polling ● Technical assistance with campaigns ● Staff, Trustee and Friends roles ● Timing issues in the public trust Building voter support for libraries
    5. 5. Data that Frames Our Discussions “From Awareness to Funding” says…
    6. 6. Voter Attitudes Nationwide, of all voters1: 37% will Definitely vote yes for the library 37% will Probably vote yes for the library 26% will Probably or Definitely vote no or may vote either way. 1. OCLC From Awareness to Funding, 2008 Building voter support for libraries
    7. 7. Why Talk Politics and Libraries? Building voter support for libraries When only 37% of likely voters say they will definitely support libraries at the ballot box it is necessary for you to become active. @everylibrary
    8. 8. Why Talk Politics and Libraries? Building voter support for libraries About a third of New Hampshire residents live in a town with a traditional town meeting, another third under SB2 rule, and the remaining third in communities with a city council. Union Leader 16 Feb 2013 http://www.newhampshire.com/article/20130217 /NEWS0612/130219241/0/news01
    9. 9. Voter Education Challenge “The [New Hampshire] state municipal association examined 27 towns and found that an average of 2.4% of registered voters attended the deliberative sessions in 2010 and 25.5% of registered voters voted on the budget at the polls.” Union Leader 16 Feb 2013 http://www.newhampshire.com/article/20130217 /NEWS0612/130219241/0/news01 Building voter support for libraries
    10. 10. Voter Attitudes Nationwide, of all voters1: 37% will Definitely vote yes for the library 37% will Probably vote yes for the library 26% will Probably or Definitely vote no or may vote either way. 1. OCLC From Awareness to Funding, 2008 Building voter support for libraries
    11. 11. Building voter support for libraries From “Probable” to “Super” Who Supports Libraries?
    12. 12. Civic Attitudes Building voter support for libraries ● 94% of Parents say libraries are important for their children. 79% say “very important”. 2 ● 58% of Americans have a library card. 3 ● 62% of card holders have visited the library in the last year at least once.4 2. Pew, May 2013 3 and 4. Harris Interactive | ALA, January 2011 @everylibrary
    13. 13. Library Use Does Not Matter The research revealed an important distinction between the public library user and the public library funder. Not every library user is a library funder; not every library funder is a library user. A voter’s willingness to support increased library funding is not driven, or limited, by library use. In fact, the advocacy research found that there is little correlation between frequency of library visits and willingness to increase funding for libraries. - OCLC "From Awareness to Funding" p. 7-2 Building voter support for libraries
    14. 14. Library Use Does Not Matter A voter’s willingness to support increased library funding is not driven, or limited, by library use. Building voter support for libraries
    15. 15. Library as Transformative Force [T]he library is not perceived as just a provider of practical answers and information; the most committed supporters hold the belief that the library is a transformational force. - OCLC "From Awareness to Funding" p. 7-4 Building voter support for libraries
    16. 16. Attitude - Not Demographics A crucial and somewhat unexpected finding from the segmentation analysis was that demographics and lifestage were not important constructs in the library supporter segmentation. In fact, demographics are irrelevant to library funding support. The factors that determine residents’ willingness to increase their taxes to support their local library are their perceptions and attitudes about the library and the librarian, not their age, gender, education level or household income. Library funding support is an attitude, not a demographic. - OCLC "From Awareness to Funding" p. 7-3
    17. 17. Attitude - Not Demographics The factors that determine residents’ willingness to increase their taxes to support their local library are their perceptions and attitudes about the library and the librarian. Building voter support for libraries
    18. 18. Who Supports Libraries? • They are involved in their communities • They recognize the library’s importance to the community and to a child’s education • They are not always heavy users of the library, but believe the library is a noble place, important and relevant to the community • They see the library as a vital community resource like public schools, fire and police, and are willing to increase their taxes to support the library. • They recognize the value of a ‘passionate librarian’ as a true advocate for lifelong learning. Building voter support for libraries
    19. 19. They recognize the value of a ‘passionate librarian’ as a true advocate for lifelong learning. Building voter support for libraries
    20. 20. Voter Attitudes What do we know about voters and libraries? ● Users vs. Non-Users ● Progressives vs. Conservatives ● Family Demographics ● Any Tax is a Bad Tax* Nothing Impacts More than their Perception of the Librarian and the Library as Institution. Building voter support for libraries
    21. 21. What Activates Voters? Seven Factors:  A Reason to Vote  Mobilized  Personal Contact with Candidate or Representative*  Culture/Tradition/Habit of Voting*  Trust in Government  Decided to Vote  Weather/Access to Polls Building voter support for libraries
    22. 22. 1. An Identified Need 2. Personal Motivation 3. Experience of the Issue* 4. Prior Success as an Advocate* 5. Institutional Reputation 6. Made a Pledge 7. Ease of Access to Advocacy Tools What Activates Advocates? Building voter support for libraries
    23. 23. ADVOCATES: 1. An Identified Need 2. Personal Motivation 3. Experience of the Issue 4. Prior Success as an Advocate 5. Institutional Reputation 6. Made a Pledge 7. Ease of Access to Tools Activate in Any Context Building voter support for libraries VOTERS: 1. A Reason to Vote 2. Mobilization 3. Personal Contact with Candidate 4. Culture/Tradition/Habit of Voting 5. Trust in Government (pro or con) 6. Decided to Vote 7. Weather/Access to Polls
    24. 24. How We Activate Them Run it like a Campaign ● Ground Game ● Endorsements and Allies ● Coalition Building ● Actively Ask Fin Building voter support for libraries @everylibrary
    25. 25. What Activates Voters for the Library? #1 - Nothing Impacts Voter Behavior More than their Perception of the Librarian and the Library as Institution. #2 - Awareness that there is a Warrant or Measure on the Ballot. Building voter support for libraries
    26. 26. What Activates Voters for the Library? The Librarian is the “Candidate” The Library is the “Incumbent” Library = Librarians + Community Building voter support for libraries
    27. 27. Building voter support for libraries Thanks for Running The Campaign Team
    28. 28. “Campaign” Team Public Employees on Public Time or Representatives of the library acting in an official capacity ● Staff ● Trustees ● Friends and “Super Friends” Building voter support for libraries
    29. 29. Look Before You Leap Ask Four Questions: Q1: What community groups do you belong to? Q2: Where do you live and where do you spend your time? Q3: Who do you know who knows everybody? Q4: Who are we missing? Building voter support for libraries
    30. 30. Allies and Endorsers Early contact is the difference
    31. 31. Inventory Your Allies 1. Educational Partners 2. Social Welfare and Religious Partners 3. Governmental Partners 4. Civic Partners 5. Business Partners 6. Politicians 7. Media Building voter support for libraries @everylibrary
    32. 32. Inventory Your Allies 1. Educational Partners Pre-K and K-12 College/University For-Profit Tutoring Private/Public After-School Programs Three Messages: Library as Educational Partner, Library as Resource Extender, Library as Gap Filler Building voter support for libraries
    33. 33. Inventory Your Allies 2. Social Welfare and Religious Partners Counseling Centers Food Pantry / WIC Jobs Training Center Literacy Centers Boy Scouts / Girl Scouts Three Messages: Library as Resource Extender, Library as Third Place, Library as Start Point Building voter support for libraries
    34. 34. Inventory Your Allies 3. Governmental Partners City / Town Managers Parks and Public Works Public Safety – Police and Fire Planning Departments Three Messages: Library as Contact Place, Library as Info Point, Library in Common Cause Building voter support for libraries
    35. 35. Inventory Your Allies 4. Civic Partners Rotary, Lions, Kiwanis Heritage and local history GLBT, Immigrant and New Resident Three Messages: Library as Social Leveler, Library as Neutral Good, Library as [insert organizational cause the library already champions] Building voter support for libraries
    36. 36. Inventory Your Allies 5. Business Partners Local Chamber / CVB Startups and Entrepreneurs Small Businesses – Service or Retail Big Employers Three Messages: Librarian as Business Reference Resource, Library as Training Space, Library as Retail Anchor Building voter support for libraries
    37. 37. Inventory Your Allies 6. Politicians Incumbents Insurgents Local, State, Federal Three Messages: Library as Good Governance, Library as Responsible with Budget, Library as [insert their pet project] Building voter support for libraries
    38. 38. Inventory Your Allies 7. Media Local Print and TV National Media Bloggers Key Messaging is always your campaign themes and talking points Building voter support for libraries
    39. 39. Ask for Endorsements ● Your allies… ● Become your endorsers ● Become your funders ● Become your volunteers ● The person who asks is the individual “closest to” the potential endorser. ● Ask early. Ask often. ● Plan to Publicize Building voter support for libraries
    40. 40. Who is in Your Community? Identify community leaders with 5 quick questions Q1. Why is the library important to you, personally? Q2. What is your favorite reason to use the library? Q3. Who does the Library serve? Q4. Why is the library important to those people? Q5. What will new funding do to serve those communities? Building voter support for libraries @everylibrary
    41. 41. Messaging that Works The Library as….
    42. 42. To Library Users: ● “As you know...” ● Personal Value Proposition ● Value for Other ● Activation for the library To Non-Users: ● “As you can imagine...” ● Value to/for “the other” ● Satisfaction/Activation Remember – “Use” Does Not Matter Building voter support for libraries
    43. 43. The Library as… ● Educational Partner ● Economic Development Engine ● Social Leveler ● Place of Discovery ● Personal Refuge Voter see the Library as a “Transformative Force” Building voter support for libraries
    44. 44. “Perception of the Librarian” Nothing Impacts Voter Behavior More than Their Perception of the Librarian and the Library as Institution. Building voter support for libraries
    45. 45. “The Passionate Librarian” I am the Librarian who…. … find a job … learn to read … connect with family “Our Librarians Who….” Building voter support for libraries
    46. 46. “The Candidate’s Representative” Your own story, your own biography, about why you serve on the library board matters. What is your best story about helping an individual or the community ‘change’? Building voter support for libraries
    47. 47. What You Can Do, Starting Tomorrow 3 | 3 | 3 | 3
    48. 48. Community Engagement Get the Staff out of the library o Surveys o Programs and Events o Service Delivery Improve customer service o Training and Role Playing o Ramp Up the Social Media o Check Policies that Get in the Way Building voter support for libraries
    49. 49. Community Engagement Surveys ● Community Assessment Survey ● Strategic Planning Surveys ● Key Stakeholder Surveys Building voter support for libraries
    50. 50. Community Engagement Programs and Events: ● Programs that support your allies and endorsers ● Programs that expose your staff to new people ● Programs that encourage civic engagement Building voter support for libraries
    51. 51. Community Engagement Service Delivery: ● New resident visits ● Embedded librarians with key allies ● Library Card Sign-up Month* Building voter support for libraries
    52. 52. 3 | 3 | 3 | 3 Days | Weeks | Months | Years
    53. 53. Your To Do List: 3 Days: Start spending on LIKES; Show off the staff on social media 3 Weeks: Do the Personal and Community “inventories”; Set that first new meeting and have two with old allies 3 Months: Walk a Precinct; Library Card Sign-ups 3 Years: Convene the “Library Coalition of THIS PLACE” Building voter support for libraries
    54. 54. John Chrastka EveryLibrary www.everylibrary.org | facebook/everylibrary @everylibrary | everylibrary.tumblr.com john.chrastka@everylibrary.org Building voter support for libraries Thank You
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