About the League of Women Voters

The League of Women Voters of Greater Cleveland  (LWVGC) and the LWVGC Education Fund follow the mission, values, and principles set by the League of Women Voters of the United States (LWVUS)  and the LWVUS Education Fund.

LWVUS and LWVUS Education Fund
Mission and Core Values

Mission: The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages the informed and active participation of citizens in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy.

Vision, Beliefs and Intentions: 
 the goal of the League of Women Voters is to empower citizens to shape better communities worldwide.

The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political membership organization, which:

Acts after study and member agreement to achieve solutions in the public interest on key community issues at all government levels.
Builds citizen participation in the democratic process.
Engages communities in promoting positive solutions to public policy issues through education and advocacy.

The League of Women Voters Education Fund is a nonpartisan public policy educational organization, which:

Builds citizen participation in the democratic process.
Studies key community issues at all government levels in an unbiased manner.
Enables people to seek positive solutions to public policy issues through education and conflict management.

We believe in:

Respect for individuals.
The value of diversity.
The empowerment of the grassroots, both within the League and in communities.
The power to collective decision making for the common good.

We will:

Act with trust, integrity and professionalism.
Operate in an open and effective manner to meet the needs of those we serve, both members and the public.
Take the initiative in seeking diversity in membership.
Acknowledge our heritage as we seek our path to the future.

Core Values:

We are a nonpartisan political membership organization.
We believe that grassroots initiatives and consensus building are the strengths of our organization.
We believe that our organizational models the principles of good governance.
We consider well before taking action and prepare well before beginning to act.
We believe that citizenship requires knowledge, as well as the ability and will to act.
We believe that the responsibility of good government rests on the shoulders of its citizens.
We believe that the rights of citizens at home and abroad are interdependent.

League Principles

The League of Women Voters believes in representative government and in the individual liberties established in the Constitution of the United States. The League of Women Voters of the United States believes that all powers of the U.S. government should be exercised within the constitutional framework of a balance among the three branches of government: legislative, executive, and judicial.

The League of Women Voters believes that democratic government depends upon informed and active participation in government and requires that
 governmental bodies protect the citizen’s right to know by giving adequate notice of proposed actions, holding open meetings and making public records accessible.

The League of Women Voters believes that every citizen should be protected in the right to vote; that every person should have access to free public education that provides equal opportunity for all; and that no person or group should suffer legal, economic or administrative discrimination.

The League of Women Voters believes that efficient and economical government requires competent personnel, the clear assignment of responsibility, adequate financing, and coordination among the different agencies and levels of government.

The League of Women Voters believes that responsible government should be responsive to the will of the people; that government should maintain an equitable and flexible system of taxation, promote the conservation and development of natural resources in the public interest, share in the solution of economic and social problems that affect the general welfare, promote a sound economy and adopt domestic policies that facilitate the solution of international problems.

The League of Women Voters believes that cooperation with other nations is essential in the search for solutions to world problems and that development of international organization and international law is imperative in the promotion of world peace.

Where Do the Principles Come From?

The Principles are “concepts of government” to which the League subscribes. They are a descendant of the Platform, which served from 1942 to 1956 as the national repository for “principles supported and positions taken by the League as a whole in fields of government to which it has given sustained attention.” Since then, the Principles have served two functions, according to the LWVUS Bylaws: 1) authorization for adoption of national, state and local programs (Article XII), and 2) a basis for taking action at the national, state and local levels (Article XII).

The appropriate board authorizes action to implement the Principles once it determines that member understanding and agreement do exist and that action is appropriate. As with other action, when there are ramifications beyond a League’s own government jurisdiction, that League should consult other Leagues affected.

The National Board suggests that any action on the Principles be taken in conjunction with current League positions to which they apply and on which member agreement and understanding are known to exist. The Principles are rather broad when standing alone, so it is necessary to exercise caution when considering using them as a basis for action. Furthermore, since 1974 most of the Principles have been an integral part of the national program, most notably in the criteria for evaluating government that appear at the end of the summary of public policy positions.