As elders with a strong sense of history, we actively promote peace, social and economic justice, and environmental sustainability.

Resist Trump Tuesday

When: ​​​​​​​​​​​​Tues, May 21, 11:30am-12:30pm
Where: Peace Corner (Wall & Greenwood)
Yes, it's a local election. But, if we had paid better attention to local elections (like Republicans did) over the past couple of decades, we might not be in the mess we're in today. 

While we cannot let up on demanding accountability for Trump and his enablers, we must also work to prevent this kind of thing from happening again, and that starts at the local level. Let's remind folks to take care of both today and tomorrow.

Reminder:   We may be an unruly lot at times, but we must remain a peaceful one. Please DO NOT ENGAGE with any counter-protesters that may be present. There’s plenty of room for all.

That said, bring your signs! Bring your voices! Bring your friends! Vive la résistance!

The Vocal Seniority, with our partners Indivisible Bend


Today's the day folks!!!
Ballots must be dropped off TODAY ... Tues May 21

Women's Reproductive
Rights Rally

What: Rally to #StopTheBans
When: Tuesday, May 21, 5:30 pm
Where: Peace Corner (Wall & Greenwood)

This Tuesday, May 21st, at statehouses, town squares, and courthouses across the nation, we will show up to speak out and fight back against the unconstitutional attempt to gut Roe and punish women. Join us to send a message that we will always hold the line in Oregon. Together we say: STOP THE BANS!

To the men in our communities, we need your presence now. The reproductive rights of women are not just a woman’s issue. Please stand with us at this event.

Link to event information:

Election Night Watch Party

When: ​Tuesday, May 21, 7:00 - 9:00 pm
Where: Broken Top Bottle Shop, 1740 NW Pence Ln, Ste 1, Bend
Hosted by: Deschutes Democrats

Come join us at Broken Top Bottle Shop in Bend on election night to celebrate our candidates' hard work and watch results roll in!

Central Oregon Bike and Pedestrian Summit

What: "Connecting Communities"
When: Wednesday, May 22, 9:00 am – 3:00
Where: Bend Park and Rec District Office, 799 SW Columbia, Bend
Hosted by: Deschutes County Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee
RSVP: Register  here

Join the  Deschutes County Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee  neighbors, planners, and friends of walking and biking at the Central Oregon Bike and Pedestrian Summit

Topics include:
Low Stress Bike Networks
Bike Month Events
Transportation Network Companies
Safe Routes to School
Public Transportation
Transportation Safety Action Plans
Meeting is free! $10.00 for Taco del Mar burrito sack lunch available.

Central Oregon

What: Regular meeting of Central Oregon Strong Voice
When: Wednesday, May 22, 6:00 - 7:00 pm
Where: Hutchinson Room, Deschutes Public Library, Downtown Bend
Our next Oregon Strong Voice Meeting is on May 22 at the Downtown Branch of the Deschutes Public Library-Hutchinson Room.
Central Oregon Strong Voice is a coalition of labor unions and community-based organizations.

Fridays For Future –
Bend Youth Strike

What: ​​​​​​​​​Weekly youth strike to stop climate change
When: Friday May 24 at 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Where: Peace Corner (Wall & Greenwood)
Hosted by: Bend's youth

It’s become very clear– we have just a decade to stop climate change, and clearly those in power both in the U.S. need to start hearing us and to start listening.

Age Friendly Cities
Regional Summit

When: Friday, May 31, 9:00 - 11:30 am
Where: St. Charles Hospital Conference Room A/B/C/D, 2500 NE Neff Rd, Bend
Hosted by: Center for Age Friendly Excellence (CAFE), Council on Aging of Central Oregon, and Oregon Health and Science University, Community Hub
RSVP: Tickets are free. Register  here

This conference is an opportunity to gather, organize, and learn about the Age-Friendly Cities process, to build on the momentum already begun within Central Oregon, to coordinate access to funding, to identify and roll out best practices, and to avoid duplication of effort.

About the Keynote Speaker:
Dr. Pelham is the Chair of the Board of Directors of Council on Aging, Central Oregon. In addition, she serves as president of the National Association of Professional Gerontologists (NAPG) and an emeritus professor and founding director of the Gerontology Program at San Francisco State University.


When: ​Monday, June 17. 6:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Doors open at 6:00
Where: Brooks Room, Downtown Bend Library, 601 NW Wall St, Bend
Hosted by: The Vocal Seniority and Indivisible Bend

Mark your calendars! Registration (limited to 70) and fuller details to follow soon.

Join us for a panel discussion on our First Amendment rights and risks as well as de-escalation tactics and conflict resolution during protests and other activities. 
Long-time activist Sid Snyder will present views and motivations for demonstrating, protesting, and conducting acts of nonviolent civil disobedience.
District Attorney John Hummel will discuss the role of law enforcement in protecting our First Amendment rights. He will also address the police’s role in public protests, marches, demonstrations, and nonviolent civil disobedience actions.
Attorney Thaddeus Betz who will offer legal advice on our first amendment and other rights as well as our legal risks when engaging in nonviolent protests and civil disobedience actions.
Local non-violent conflict resolution mediator Dick Eisman of the Cascades Mediation Center will tutor us on de-escalation tactics and other measures that would reduce the potential for conflict at events.
A short workshop will be held for those interested in becoming a monitor at demonstrations and other events.

​Women's Investment Network

When: Thursday, June 6, 2019 @ 5 pm
Where: The home of Molly Foerster, 1512 NW Wild Rye Circle, Bend
Please RSVP to  [email protected]
From Jackie Dingfelder:  Greetings:

I am co-hosting an exciting event with Molly Foerster to introduce you to Oregon’s WIN-PAC (Women’s Investment Network Political Action Committee).  Think of it as Oregon’s version of Emily’s List.

For the first time in history, a majority of Oregon’s statewide elected officials are women.

WIN-PAC has always had a very high profile in the Portland area, and now we’re working to make it a big success in Central Oregon too. So what we need is a big showing at a fundraiser to be held in June to continue the engagement of strong and smart Central Oregon Democratic women. 

Please join me for this important event and let’s organize a STRONG coalition of Democratic supporters. Jamie McLeod-Skinner, 2018 Congressional candidate, will be a special guest, as will many Central OR women in elected office. We’re happy to have men come too and get behind the benefits that are derived from having women in office. #heforshe 
And please feel free to pass this invitation on to folks who might be interested.

P.S. Can’t make the event? You can still donate to WINPAC, P.O. Box 8432, Portland, OR, 97207 or online:   http://oregonwinpac.com/

Dammed to Extinction
(movie premiere)

What: Dammed to Extinction - Premiere Film Showing in Bend
When: June 11, 2019, Doors open at 6pm
Where: Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, 61980 Skyline Ranch Rd, Bend.

The Central OR Bitterbrush Broads and the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Social Justice Committee are thrilled to have a premiere showing of this newly released, not to be missed film. Four obsolete dams choke off access to thousands of miles of rivers. Removing these dams will save money, salmon and orcas.  CLICK HERE  to register.

For eons, a one-of-a-kind population of killer whales has hunted chinook salmon along the Pacific Coast. For the last 40 years, renowned whale scientist Ken Balcomb has closely observed them. He's familiar with a deadly pattern. Salmon numbers plummet. Orcas starve. The downward spiral compelled him to realize that studying whales was no longer enough. He needed to act. The orcas need roughly a million salmon a year, where to find a million fish? The solution says Balcomb, is getting rid of four fish-killing dams 500 miles away, on the largest tributary to what was, until it was dammed nearly to death in the last century, the largest chinook producing river on earth. Studying whales is science. Removing dams is politics. Defiantly mixing the two, says Balcomb, has become the most important work of his storied career. Meanwhile, the race to extinction for salmon and orcas speeds up, nipping at the heels of the plodding, clumsy pace of political change in the Pacific Northwest, where dams and hydropower are king. A $10 donation is requested to support expenses for this showing and the continued advocacy for salmon and orcas. A donation is not required to register or attend.

Clean Energy Jobs Bill

From: Connie Peterson​
Ten years in the making, this is the boldest and most important action Oregon can take to address climate change (an issue that touches almost everything else we care about!) and it is poised to pass this year.  Postcards to urge support by Helt, Zika and Knopp would be great. Here are some talking points. 

After hearings around the State (including here in Bend on March 2) the Joint Committee on Carbon Reduction (JCCR) came out with amendments that the RENEW Oregon coalition were overall very pleased with, and that actually strengthen the bill.   

It is also important that DEM members of the JCCR hear from us, thanking them for what are called the DASH 31 (-31) Amendments and asking them to hold strong!  Individual emails should be sent to these JCCR Members--see draft language below: 


Michael Dembrow: 900 Court St NE, S-407, Salem, OR 97301
Email: [email protected]
Kathleen Taylor: 900 Court St NE, S-423, Salem, OR 97301
Email: [email protected]
Jeff Golden:  900 Court St NE, S-421, Salem, OR, 97301
Email: [email protected]
Lee Beyer:  900 Court St NE, S-411, Salem, OR, 97301
Email: [email protected]


Karin Power:  900 Court St NE, H-274, Salem, OR 97301
Email: [email protected] 

Kenneth Helm:  900 Court St NE, H-490, Salem, OR 97301
Email: [email protected]

 Pam Marsh:L  900 Court St NE, H-375, Salem, OR 97301
Email:[email protected]

John  Lively: 900 Court St NE, H-488, Salem, OR 97301
Email: [email protected] 

Draft language for messages to JCCR members:  

Trash incinerator Covanta is emitting some of the most toxic pollution in the state through burning plastics and medical waste, which emit a dangerous mix of heavy metals and other pollutants. We urge you to hold them accountable by keeping them under the cap, as you have done in the -31 amendment.  

Also, HFCs, (sometimes called fluorinated gases or F-gases for short) are thousands of times more potent than CO2, as a greenhouse gas.  The -31 amendment ends an exemption for the F-gases used in the semiconductor manufacturing, including F-gases under the cap from the beginning of the program. 

Please pass the -31 amendment as is, and keep these polluters in the program. 


Central Oregon has an incredibly active group of progressives working on various issues such as Social Justice, Equity, Environmental, Legislative, Gun Safety, Workers & Immigrant Rights, Women's Rights, LGBTQ, Climate, etc. There are more events happening in most weeks than can be listed in this email. We encourage you to visit our enhanced and expanded  Deschutes Grassroots Calendar!​

A group of dedicated volunteers update the Deschutes Grassroots Calendar with local events in an effort to provide the most comprehensive view of progressive events, actions, lectures, marches, protests, etc. Want to volunteer? Then email the Deschutes Grassroots Team  here .

We will continue to provide Indivisible Bend and The Vocal Seniority with a subset of these events but we encourage you to bookmark the Deschutes Grassroots calendar for the most recent, most up-to-date, most comprehensive list of progressive events in Central Oregon.

Have an action / event that you would like to have included in the Deschutes Grassroots Calendar?

Email the team  here !      Please provide a description of the event, date, time and location and any other relevant information.

​Urgent Action Success!

Thank You to Everyone Who Spoke Out Against SASO, the Second Amendment Sanctuary Ordinance.​​​​

We won the first round in this battle against a Gun Law Ordinance proposal to prohibit Deschutes County law enforcement from using county funds to enforce State and Federal gun laws. 

See Julia Shumway’s article in the Bend Bulletin here:  https://bit.ly/2O2rNPb

Thank you to everyone who called our County Commissioners and to the individuals who alerted activists and then mobilized our community to speak out against this ill-conceived ordinance. Although this first proposal was defeated, the individual who wrote the ordinance and brought it to our County Commissioners has not been deterred. He is working hard to gather signatures to place this ordinance on the ballot. We will keep you informed of the status of this measure should it be placed on the ballot.

Responses to the VS
​"Member" Survey  Jan 2019

A few months ago we sent out a survey asking those on our mailing list their opinions on The Vocal Seniority's past work and priorities for the new year. Results of that survey may be read here .