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CT State Grange Annual Session To Be Held Virtually Only

By Todd A. Gelineau, State Secretary

  September 8, 2020 --

The 2020 Connecticut State Grange Session will be held entirely online via Zoom.  There will not be an in-person meeting component to the Session as previously planned.

     Planning State Session has been a constant concern for me and my fellow Board members throughout this summer.  The State of Connecticut has been held steady at 25 people indoors and 100 outdoors for most of this summer and the Governor has indicated that an increase will take more time.  While we can work with 25, it does require considerable changes to the physical meeting that would have made the in-person meeting extremely different from what we know as a Grange meeting.  A six foot “bubble” would have to be created around each member in attendance to adhere to social distancing guidelines.  Masks would have to be worn at all times (other than at lunch). Floor work and other parts of the ritual would have to be modified to, again, adhere to social distancing.

     In addition, we were very concerned that delegates attending on Zoom would have difficulty seeing and hearing much of what would be going on in the meeting hall and those in the meeting hall would have difficulty connecting with the “Zoom-ers”.

     In the end, it was decided that the benefits of holding the in-person meeting were heavily outweighed by the drawbacks.  By holding the meeting entirely on Zoom, all members will experience the same advantages and disadvantages.  We know this decision doesn’t make it any easier for those members who struggle with the technological challenges this presents but it is our best attempt to keep all members safe and to successfully hold State Session within the limitations of COVID-19.

     Our Membership Director, Faith Quinlan, is always willing to talk with any member needing help with Zoom.  She can be reached by calling 518-698-2785 or by emailing membership@ctstategrange.org.  A practice run on Zoom will be held on Sunday, September 16, 2020 beginning at 7:00 P.M.  All officers, deputies and delegates will automatically receive an email containing the links to attend this meeting.  If you did not receive one for the August meeting, and would like to attend the upcoming meeting, please let me or Faith know and we’ll get the information to you.

     In the coming weeks each delegate and State Officer will receive a packet containing Zoom information, a resolution packet and any other information needed for State Session.  If you are a delegate and have not received your packet by Oct. 3, please let me know.  Unlike an in-person session, we have to rely on the USPS to deliver them.  Digital packets will also be provided to all delegates who provided email addresses on the registration form.  All delegates will receive both (when possible).

     We have had to make many decisions since March that we never thought we would EVER have to make.  We will make some mistakes along the way.  With conditions and constraints ever-changing and inconsistent, it is inevitable.  However, the Connecticut State Grange Board of Directors is making every attempt to act in the best interest of all Granges and Grangers with each and every decision.

     Stay safe and stay well!


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