Issue nights are public meetings designed to raise awareness about specific issues facing the community and provide balanced educational resources about these issues. These programs feature a panel of speakers representing a broad range of views on a particular subject, issue nights are an effective way to highlight particular topics and engage in election activism without involving candidates.
JCRCs may wish to cosponsor issue nights with other local organizations. This is an especially effective way to form new relationships and strengthen existing ones, particularly with issue-centric groups.
Issue nights are usually scheduled for 60 to 90 minutes, and feature the following elements:
- JCRC leadership introduce the program and welcome all of the participants.
- It is important to state that the event is intended to be educational only and that the JCRC does not endorse any candidate. Nothing at this event should be construed as an endorsement of any candidate in any way. However, JCRCs may take positions on public policy issues.
- After the hosts’ introduction, present the debate topic and panel.
- Each speaker gives roughly 10 to 15 minutes of opening remarks.
- Afterwards, speakers may pose questions to each other before proceeding to an audience question and answer period.
- A short reception may follow this event.