“Democracy Demands Engagement: Workshop 1 Recap,

What to Expect in Workshop 2”

Representative Jay Kaufman’s award winning public policy forum, “OPEN HOUSE,” held a highly engaging first of a 4-part workshop on civic engagement on May 4th. The opening forum, “Challenging Times/Building Community,” was part of the ground-breaking series, “Democracy Demands Engagement.”  All sessions are being held 7PM-9 PM at Temple Isaiah, 55 Lincoln Street in Lexington. The remaining forums are May 18th, May 25th, and June 15th.

The 2016 campaign sent shockwaves through the nation and world. Since Election Day, many of us asked “What now?” These forums are bringing us together to ask this question, to think and learn together, and to explore steps to re-energize democracy and ourselves.

Takeaways from “Challenging Times/Building Community”

Over one hundred people met together to tell their stories, identify shared values, and think about the obstacles to building a community that represents those values. The night began with one-on-one conversations, where participants took time getting to know their neighbors, asking questions like, “What matters to you and why?” From those conversations, important themes began to emerge that helped paint a broader picture of where we are as a country and what challenges we face

What to expect going forward

May 18thIdentifying and Overcoming Divisions,” will allow us to look behind today’s challenges to identify the systemic roots of our divisions and those who exploit them for political gain.  On May 25th, “Values-Based/Moral Action,” we will reflect on what it means and what it will take to act effectively.  The series culminates on June 15th with “What Now?  Stand Up, Stand Tall, Stand Together,” a chance to organize and form teams for important next steps.  Begin to think now about what you’re willing to do as a concerned citizen.


Unlike regular “OPEN HOUSE” forums that are taped and broadcast by LexMedia, to encourage unfettered participation, this revolution will not be televised! Mark your calendars and join us as we explore this challenging territory. RSVP by emailing Jacob.blanton@mahouse.gov.