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LaDemocracy Inc.
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Always Vote

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Welcome to our web site!

On this home page we'll introduce our organization and highlight important areas on our site.

History of LDP

 

Louisiana Democracy Project evolved out of a philosophy that acknowledges the inherent benefits of a heightened participation by the general public in the democratic process.    We developed from a discussion group in 1997 to become incorporated in 1998. 

 

We have

         Highlighted the requirement of photo identification cards at the polls for registered voters.  This fight resulted in some municipalities offering free identification cards.

         Organized workshops on ballot access, right-to-know and campaign finance reform,

          January 2001 Forum cosponsored with the Louisiana NAACP on the campus of Southern University featuring John Bonifaz director of the National Voting Rights Institute attended by state legislators, political science instructors and students.

         Conducted workshops on mini-grant writing

         Held  parent forums on High Stakes Testing of public school students

         Participated in EPA hearings on Title 6

          Rallied in front of the Department of Health and Hospitals to protest the use of Dioxin in the state

          Assisted Fannie Lou Hammer Project in the  2001 National NAACP Convention held in New Orleans

          Participated in 2001 Save the Children environmental justice campaign sponsored by Greenpeace

          Participated with Louisiana Environmental Action Network in Take Back our Communities, rally, forum and EPA listening session

          Participated in the formation of USAction

          Participated in the formation of Coalition Collaborative

          Participated in the formation of Fannie Lou Hamer Project

         Participated in the reorganization of Southern Organizing Committee for Social and Economic Justice

 

 

In addition, Stephanie Anthony, who currently serves as LDPs Executive Director, has been very instrumental in the national movement for campaign finance reform.  In a very short time, she has become one of the countrys most respected voices as it relates to the inequitable impact that our current campaign finance system has on African-Americans and other people of color.   As a representative of the Louisiana Democracy Project, she has served on the board or collaborated with most of the nations leading advocates for campaign finance reform and has helped organize several major events including;

 

  • Participated in 1999 at Howard University in Washington, D.C. entitled Campaign Finance Reform as a Civil Rights Issue hosted by the National Voting Rights Institute.
  • Conducted elections for youth representative of Mississippi River Basin Alliance at annual conventions in 1999 and in 2000
  • Organized two 1999 LDP coalition-building events with Louisiana statewide organizations featuring William McNary, Executive Director of US Action and Stan Goff, Regional Organizing Director of Democracy South.
  • Organized one-day LDP voting rights event entitled Call of the Drum at Southern University, which attracted over 150 participants .  
  • Raised funds to allow  youth participation  in the  34th Celebration of Voting Rights History in Selma, Alabama.
  • Organized a meeting between LDP and Louisiana Communities United to strategize making legislators accountable for a massive ad valorem/tax exemption given to business at the expense of the states public schools.
  • Served as panelist for Shadow Convention 2000  in Philadelphia to the National Republican Convention on the effects of campaign funding and t he environment in Louisiana.

 

Louisiana Democracy Project has an education project which informs, inspires and empowers parents of East Baton Rouge Parish school students.

 

We educate the general public on issues such as  campaign finance as a civil rights issue, ballot access, open meetings  and environmental justice.

 

Participate with and support other nonprofit organizations.

 

Our Organization is open to all people who want to learn about and or get involved in the democratic process.  At this time we are made up of mostly low income people of color, disabled citizens, youth,  and senior citizens.

 

 

A mainstay of our activities involve monitoring local community meetings including East Baton Rouge Parish School Board, Board Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE),  Housing Authority Board, EPA Hearings, Capitol Transportation Corporation Board Meetings, Metro Council Meetings. 

        We network with organizations throughout the state.

        We attend  forums highlighting high stakes testing around the nation and its impact on African American students.

        We attend sessions with the Louisiana Congressional Black Caucus to highlight concerns of Baton Rouge students and parents. 

        We hold Voting Rights Forum on the campus of Southern University

        We host regional and national speakers and trainers

 

          We continued to prepare to independently sustain ourselves  and help other organizations by holding fundraising workshops to begin to demystify the grant writing process.

 

We Actively Stand Up for the Oppressed

 

          We participated with Greenpeace in its Suffer the Little Children celebrity tour of Cancer Alley featuring actor  Mike Farrell, Pulitzer Prize winning author Alice Walker and author Haki Madhubuti.  Former Southern University student and Louisiana Democracy Project, Inc. volunteer Catherine Anthony was quoted in The Advocate, Baton Rouges daily newspaper.

          We traveled to Memphis to participate in the Days of Outrage, a protest over the moving of Viet Nam era weapons from the military depot without an evacuation plan.  The predominately African America, low income community surrounding the facility has been complaining of ground water contamination for years.  Activist comedian Dick Gregory served as a speaker.  LDP members appeared on local Memphis television stations in the action.   

 

We provided the opportunity for undeserved communities to have a voice in the democratic, public policy, and electoral process.

 

         We form partnerships with academic, and  nonprofit organizations.    

         We promote a citizens call to action around any issues that threaten the ideals of democracy. 

          

We believe in learning

 

          Our Board members have received training from Kenneth Jones of Peace Development Fund;  Southern Echo of Jackson, Mississippi and Southern Empowerment of Knoxville, Tenn., Mississippi River Basin Alliance, St. Louis, and Communication Consortium Media Center, Washington D.C

 

          We received funds from Democracy South,  Southern Partners Fund and Southern Echo (Mott Foundation)

 

 

          LEAN (Louisiana Environmental Action Network) served as our fiscal agent and provided assistance in various areas.                           

 

PRAY FOR OUR AIR REPORT

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No Woman Left Behind Photos

Environmental Justice

In 2002  Louisiana Democracy Project began the  Pray for Our Air Program  December 17, 2001after two LDP members attended a public hearing sponsored by  the Department of Environmental Quality.   ExxonMobil requested an air permit which would allow it to emit an additional 649 tons of pollution into the air in the production of its new Tier2 low sulfur gas.

In the 100 miles between Baton Rouge and New Orleans there are more than 150 petrochemical plants which produce 25% of the petrochemicals in the nation.  We have the highest concentration of toxic emissions to the air, land and water in the country.  Exxon-Mobil is the largest refinery corporation in the world and it sits 2 miles from Louisiana Democracy Project.  In this area of North Baton Rouge highly concentrated with African Americans  the second largest number of businesses is day care centers. 

When LDP decided to oppose Exxon-Mobil there were only 5 citizens present at the January 17, 2002 proceedings the rest of the room was full of industry people.           

The Tulane Environmental Law Clinic explained that they could find no legal grounds to oppose the permit but they did provided us with a list of the chemicals to be emitted, 30.83 tons of Particulate Matter, 85.55 tons of Sulfur Dioxide, 279.36 tons of Carbon Monoxide, 85 tons of Volatile Organic Compounds- a precursor to ozone, 169.17 tones of Nitrogen Oxide.  LEAN (La. Environmental Action Network ), said they could find no technical grounds to oppose the permit however they  shared information on East Baton Rouge Parish, second in the state for toxic air emissions part of a five parish area which is  a serious ozone non-attainment area.  

Assessing the magnitude of the problem and the limited time,  Louisiana Democracy Project, Inc. sent out a fax to everyone in its data base calling for prayer over the situation.   Next we produced a form requesting public comments and we went to the streets.   With help from the other organizations we collected 590 comments.  WBRZ Channel 9 news interviewed president Stephanie Anthony and ran the fax number for the La. Department of Environmental Quality the day before deadline.  Former Congressmen and current State Senator Cleo Fields saw the broadcast put in an angry call to La.DEQ demanding more time since his constituents did not have fax machines and deserved to be heard.            

            Many interesting, previously unknown facts came out in that town hall meeting including the fact that the air monitor on Southern Universitys campus which is located within 2 miles of ExxonMobil went off 50 times last year.  Which means the air in that area exceeded the threshold set by the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality for pollution at least 50 times.

            The Louisiana Democracy Project is a  grassroots based organization founded in 1998 to ensure the recognition of the fundamental rights of political, economic, and environmental self-determination for disenfranchised Louisiana citizens.

            Nine other refineries in Louisiana are expected to apply for the same permit as ExxonMobil, La. Democracy Project has called for a moratorium on air permits.  We believe that no air permits should be given out until Baton Rouge is in compliance with the federal Clean Air Act.

Pray for Our Air Report

EPA Rmarks

We invite you to visit us or attend an event. Our members are more than happy to answer any questions you may have about the organization and how you can join.

LaDemocracy Inc. - 4070 Fairwoods Drive
(225) 357-7425

LaDemocracy Project-Social Justice Link