Somali Women To Flex Political Muscle At MN Caucuses

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Somali political training

Click photo to watch Somali political training

Click photo to watch Somali political training

Party precinct caucuses can be puzzling to long-time political activists. It is democracy in action but some of the rules and procedures can be confusing.

Imagine what the process is like to people living here with a different cultural background, U.S. Somalis for example. Not many Somalis have participated in the caucus.

Somali activist Fartun Weli says, “The process is confusing and Democrats have not reached out to us.” Fartun and the leadership of DFL Senate District 44 decided to change that situation.

DFL produces political action training videos for Somali community

Fartun Weli, Somali Activist

Mike Hindin, working with other SD 44 board members drafted a proposal to the State DFL seeking a grant for a Somali Caucus Participation program. Eric Margolis, State Party Affirmative Action Officer, lead the state party effort which started in December 2011. The task force produced two training videos, one in Somali and one in Spanish.

The January 29 event turned out about 45 women to learn about the caucus process and to prepare themselves for productive participation in the next election. Their first opportunity to participate is next week when Minnesota holds its precinct caucuses.

Bill Sorem

Bill Sorem is a longtime advertising professional who started with Campbell Mithun and ended up with his own agency. After a tour as a sailing fleet manager in the Virgin Islands he turned to database programming as an independent consultant. He has written sailing guides for the British Virgin Islands and Belize, and written for a number of blogs. In 2010, he volunteered as a citizen journalist with The UpTake and has stayed on as a video reporter.

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