Wednesday, April 18, 2012

April 2012: News and Upcoming Events

Democrats Abroad Switzerland
April 2012: News and Upcoming Events

1) Democrats Abroad Global Presidential Primary
2) DA Switzerland Annual General Meeting, May 13 in Winterthur
3) Americans in Switzerland Town Hall Meetings in Lausanne and Zurich
4) 2nd Visit Behind the Scenes at Nuit des Bains: A special guided tour for Democrats Abroad in Geneva May 2nd
5) DACH at Expat Expo Basel June 4th – Save the Date! Volunteers needed!
6) got a facelift
7) Save WRS

Remember 2008?
This music video on YouTube will bring you back: Obama 08 - A Look Back

2012 is a crucial election year in the United States. Democrats Abroad wants your vote for the Presidential nomination
to count in the Global Primary elections. This is where you choose your delegates for the Democratic National Convention taking place in September 2012 to represent you as Democratic voters overseas! For this reason, we want everyone concerned to turn out for the Democrats Abroad
GLOBAL PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARY taking place in Switzerland and around the world on May 1-6. We'll be voting in Geneva on May 3rd. You'll find more details below. Vote in Person and Share the Excitement!

Over the course of the next months, DA will be in busy across Switzerland. We are really excited to cross the Rostigraben and hold our Annual General Meeting in Winterthur! Hop on a train and meet other like-minded Americans, bring your family!

These are exciting times ahead of us. We look forward to sharing them with you!

1) Democrats Abroad Global Presidential Primary and Convention Delegates election
DA Switzerland will be holding a Global Presidential Primary with a voting center open on May 3rd from 6pm to 9pm in Geneva, Switzerland. DA members who cannot attend the May 3rd Primary Election in person can request an absentee ballot to vote in the Primary by emailing before April 30th. Please note: you can only vote in one Presidential Primary. We hope you choose to vote in the Global Presidential Primary rather than your State Primary. Showing the voting power of those of us living overseas helps us lobby issues affecting Americans living abroad. 

The Primary will not only include voting for the presidential candidate but also voting for our delegates to the Convention. Several of your fellow Democrats Abroad Switzerland members are running to be included in the Democrats Abroad delegation at the 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, NC.  In order to give them the best chance of being chosen, we have to get as many of our fellow DA Switzerland members as possible to come out and vote!  Their application, as well as those of the hundreds of other candidates, is currently being reviewed and the final list will be posted shortly on We hope you will support our members in their bid by voting either in person on May 3rd or by absentee ballot before April 30th.

Date:    Thursday May 3, 2012
Time:    6:00 PM to 9:00 PM
Venue: Hotel Bristol, 10 Rue du Mont-Blanc, 1201 Geneva
Absentee voting before April 30th: request ballot by emailing

2) DA Switzerland Annual General Meeting, May 13 in Winterthur
DA Zurich Chapter will be hosting Democrats Abroad Switzerland's Annual General Meeting in Seen, Winterthur. Come out on this Sunday afternoon for a great opportunity to get together with other members, meet your Executive Committee, share in the political life of Dems Abroad Switzerland, and get more involved in this important election year! Our hostess, DA Zurich Chapter Chair, Renee Rousseau, is already preparing for our gathering and planning to put out her delicious chicken wings and cupcakes, beer and other treats to get our potluck party rolling.

Date: Sunday May 13th, 2012
Time: from 2:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Where: DA Zurich Chapter Chair's home in Seen, Winterthur.
RSVP to DA Switzerland and Zurich Chapter Secretary, Ashley Wheeler, at for the exact address, easy directions by train or car and to coordinate your potluck contribution!

The Preliminary Agenda for the Annual General Meeting was emailed to all members on April 13th. You can find it at
We hope you'll join us for this exciting and important part of our year!

3) Americans in Switzerland Town Hall in Lausanne and Zurich
American Town Hall Meetings have been held in Geneva, Bern, and Basel. The final 2 Town Halls will be held in Lausanne on April 18th and Zurich on May 9th.

Come meet the U.S. Ambassador Donald Beyer, the Embassy staff and U.S. Consular staff
Let us know the concerns of Americans living overseas.
Let us know how U.S. policy is affecting you.
Learn about U.S. Embassy and Consular services. 

Town Hall Meeting in Lausanne
Date: Wednesday, April 18th, 2012
Time: from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Where: University of Lausanne, Internef Building, Room 272
Metro Stop: UNIL-Dorigny Station, Metro M1
By car: UNIL is located right of autoroute Lausanne Sud. Nearest Parking lot: DORIGNY
RSVP to Lausanne Town Hall: Click here to sign up.

Town Hall Meeting in Zurich
Date: Wednesday, May 9th, 2012
Time: from 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Where: American Women's Club Zurich, Schoentalstrasse 8, 8004 Zurich
RSVP to Zurich Town Hall:

4) 2nd Visit Behind the Scenes at Nuit des Bains: A special guided tour for Democrats Abroad in Geneva May 2nd
Join art historian Sarah Burkhalter for an exclusive pre-opening guided tour of a select number of contemporary art galleries featuring American and Swiss artists in Geneva's Quartier des Bains.

Date:   Wednesday May 2nd, 2012
Time: 6:30 PM Cocktail and start of Tour, SAKS, Rue de la Synagogue 34, 1204 Geneva, TPG Stop: Cirque or Stand
Tour in presence of the artist Ruby Sky Stiler (detailed program distributed at the event).
8:30 PM, Dinner, Restaurant Ou Bien, 3 rue Bergalonne, 1205 Geneva
Participation:  Cocktail and Tour: CHF 50, with Dinner: CHF 120
***All benefits will go to DA Switzeralnd Get Out The Vote efforts for the Obama 2012 Campaign!***
RSVP: Please sign up by completing this online form:
Your participation will be confirmed once registration is completed. Advance payment by bank transfer to UBS bank.

This is a project organized for Democrats Abroad by the DACH Cultural Committee - Anne-Shelton Aaron, Sarah Burkhalter, Nicole De Feo, Karen Olson and Maya Samara. Please contact us if you would like to join the committee and/or if you have any suggestions, comments or requests at

5) DA at Expat Expo Fair in Basel
Our second Expat Expo of the year is in Basel on Sunday June 3rd. We look forward to meeting our members living around Basel. Find out about registering to vote in 2012 and how to get involved in the campaign!
What: Basel Expat Expo, a free fair for all English-speaking expats and locals looking to know more about goods, services and clubs in the region.
Date: Sunday March 11th
Time: 11:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Where:  Messe - Congress Center, Messeplatz 21, 4058 Basel
Volunteer: We are looking for volunteers for two-hour shifts at our stand. Meet other Dems and get trained on registering voters so you are ready to lead Voter Registration Drives in your community! Contact to find out how you can help!

6) got a facelift
Through the help of donations from our members to Democrats Abroad and many months of work by our talented volunteers, has been upgraded and improved. Our goal has never been to have a flashy and heavy website because Americans living all over the world need a simple and clear tool to help them request their absentee ballots. Many of you know how has transformed the way we get out the vote from abroad. We no longer have to lug around a 300+ page book that is out of date from the moment it is published, nor keep track of all the special state intricacies that are constantly changing. This is all carefully managed by the online tool. We now reach voters across Switzerland and in far-flung parts of the globe and help ensure that their forms are filled out accurately, quickly, and legibly. Test out the newly improved site today, and while you are at it, send in your request for your absentee ballot!

This important tool represents a large part of Democrats Abroad's expenses. Would you support our work with a donation today? Together, we elect Democrats!

7) Save World Radio Switzerland
We would like to draw your attention to the status of WRS - the English-language radio station familiar to so many of us across Switzerland. Many of us get our news from the BBC, Fresh Air from NPR, and insights about Swiss life from this English-language station, which will be pivotal in bringing us news of the upcoming Presidential race.

Last week, the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation announced that it is in the process of deciding the future of World Radio Switzerland. Two scenarios are being considered, including privatizing the station or closing it outright, though the latter seems to be the more likely possibility.

As you may know, WRS is the only publicly-funded English-language radio station in Switzerland, listened to widely by Swiss citizen and expatriate alike. The large Anglophone population in Switzerland uses WRS to learn more about Swiss news and culture. But now the future of the station is in doubt. The position of the SBC is that since English is not one of Switzerland's national languages, the company should not fund the station's modest 3.1MM CHF operating budget. The funding comes from your Billag fees (462CHF/year per household) and represents barely one-fifth of 1% of the overall Swiss Broadcasting budget.

If you feel, as we do, that WRS should be preserved as a public service, here is how you can help:
1) Sign the petition at and let the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation know you support WRS.
2) Support WRS on Facebook - and on The Future of WRS blog -
3) Spread the word. Ask your friends, family, and colleagues to support WRS. Forward this mail, tweet using the hashtag #savewrs.

We believe we have the power to persuade the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation to maintain funding for WRS - but every voice matters.
Please make yours count!

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