Update from the Government Affairs Chair
Posted: September 20, 2015
Sun Meadow Resort in Worley, Idaho was the site of the 2015 annual meeting and convention. During the meeting I announced the Alonzo Stevens Jr. Government Affairs Award for 2015 went to Southern California Naturist Association (SCNA). SCNA received this award for the Gary Mussell produced proposal to the California State Parks System advocating for acceptance of nude use designation areas within California State Parks. Their efforts are part of the on-going dialog to return nude use to California State Parks. That is a battle like many in GAT that is an on-going effort.
One of the nice things about being on the AANR board is getting to see so many parks I have never visited before. Mike and Terri Capshaw and Margie Cantlon, the owners of Sun Meadow Resort, went out of their way to make all AANR members and attendees feel welcome. From the numerous entertainment venues, to the meals, and the educational sessions, the convention was a chance to learn new things and relax with like-minded people to refocus our energies on what we need to do to move AANR forward.
Members of the GAT team at the convention included Gary Spangler, Walt Stephens, Mike Parker, and Fred Van Nest. While we didn’t meet formally, we discussed how we can make more people aware of how everyone can help AANR’s government affairs efforts.
We seem to have the same people doing the heavy lifting of GAT. We need everyone to be more aware of how they can make a difference in government affairs. Last year when we decided to focus on the Community Awareness (or Action) Teams (CAT) revitalization, we hoped to be further along in providing support for that effort. At the meeting I restated my intent to ensure access to the team is available to the members. During the year ahead we will address that challenge.
We need to have an easy to use access portal on the website as well as access information on the GAT pages in the Bulletin, so members can contact their local GAT representative to feed them information on what is happening locally.
Every AANR member, in fact every naturist advocate, can be and should be considered a vital part of the CATs. Among my goals for the year ahead will be the publishing of a guide for local CATs, as well as how we can get community action efforts, already underway, better disseminated to the membership.