Everyday Democracy, Secretary of State launch Connecticut civic health project
June 28, 2011
Hartford, Conn. – June 28, 2011 - Everyday Democracy and Connecticut's Secretary of the State Denise Merrill have partnered with the National Conference on Citizenship (NCoC), adding Connecticut to a growing list of states that are developing civic health indexes to measure levels of civic participation.
The NCoC has engaged a number of national and state partners for the creation of the national, state, and city Civic Health Index reports. The national partners include the Corporation for National and Community Service, the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE) at the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service at Tufts University, Civic Enterprises, and Harvard University’s Saguaro Seminar, as well as members of a Civic Indicators Working Group.
Connecticut joins 16 other states, including Arizona, California, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Virginia.
In order to engage a large group of stakeholders in the creation of Connecticut’s civic health index, Everyday Democracy and Secretary Merrill have convened over 40 community, civic, media, education, government, and philanthropic leaders and organizations representing a wide range of constituencies in the state to be part of a Civic Health Project Advisory Group. The group will formulate strategies and project ideas aimed at strengthening Connecticut's civic infrastructure.
This Advisory Group had its first meeting in June and is scheduled to meet again in July and August of 2011. Recommendations arising out of discussions at these meetings will become part of the 2011 Connecticut Civic Health Index to be published in October 2011.
The Connecticut Civic Health Index Report will also look at civic participation rates in Connecticut along several demographic indicators (gender, age, and race and ethnicity). The index will also assess the depth of community involvement by measuring the following activities:
· serving in community and civic groups and associations
· contacting public officials
· working with neighbors in addressing local problems
· participating in elections
· serving on state boards and commissions
· using the internet to learn about and participate in issue discussions
· promoting civics education, and
· being active in religious charitable activities.
This initiative has been funded in part by the William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund based in Connecticut.
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