The Friends Committee on Legislation (FCLCA) is a nonpartisan, statewide public interest lobby founded by Quakers in 1952. (Quakers are also known as the Religious Society of Friends – that’s where the “Friends” in our name comes from.)
Our supporters include people of all backgrounds and beliefs.
We advocate for California state laws that are just, compassionate and respectful of the inherent worth of every person.
Together, you and FCLCA can bring a voice of conscience to California politics. Here’s how:
- We lobby at the Capitol, where we are a constant, vigilant and well-respected presence. Our registered lobbyist weighs in with legislators at the most critical time when laws and policy are being made.
- We give you the tools help you be an effective grassroots lobbyist yourself: online and in person.
- We provide you with information and analysis to help you navigate complex issues, legislation and ballot propositions.
We are a multi-issue advocacy organization, especially noted by legislators and legislative staff for our expertise in criminal justice issues.
We are open to everyone who shares our concerns and warmly invite you to join us. Your voice will make a difference!
Our work is based on the Quaker testimonies of peace and nonviolence, equality and social justice, integrity, simplicity and community. (Quakers are also known as the Religious Society of Friends – that’s where the “Friends” in our name comes from.)
We strive everyday to bring these values into the real world of lawmaking.
We believe that there is a way to lobby and engage in politics that is also grounded in spirituality. We talk and we also listen, engaging in dialogue even with those we think may not agree with us. We are guided by a belief that there is a “we” beyond the "me."
In our 62-year history as a non-partisan, public interest lobby group we have advocated for:
- Reform of California’s criminal justice system
- Civil rights for the disenfranchised
- Single payer health care
- Farmworker protections
- Protecting education and the social safety net
- An end to militarism in public schools
- And much more.
As a multi-issue organization, we are flexible enough to deal with urgent issues and legislation as they arise. See the bills we’re working on now.
We bring a special expertise in lobbying on our focus issue: criminal justice reform. Read more.
Our stand on legislation is guided by policy statements approved by our governing body, the FCLCA General Committee. To guide our staff and volunteers, our General Committee sets our legislative priorities before each two-year legislative session. See our 2013-2014 priorities here.
We’re committed to becoming even more effective over the next three years. See our strategic goals here.
We are governed by a General Committee and a board that includes representatives of Quaker Meetings and churches around the state and at-large members who are both Quakers and non-Quakers. Read more.
Our supporters include volunteer activists who visit, call and write their legislators, gather signatures for the ballot initiatives and decide on the stands we take on legislation and ballot initiatives.
We also have an online Action Network of activists who receive Action Alerts that allow them to contact their legislators at the most critical time when laws are being considered. Join our free Action Network.
Our Action Center at www.fclca.org gives activists the information they need to easily communicate with decision makers. Take some time to explore the California page.
- FCLCA is a nonprofit 501(c)(4) organization. Individual contributors provide 90% of the financial support for FCLCA.
- The remainder comes from contributions from Quaker Meetings and their fundraising events.
- We receive no government support.
- As a lobbying organization, donations are not tax-deductible.
Our sister organization, the FCL Education Fund, is a 501(c)(3) charity, and donations are tax deductible as allowed by law.
We multiply our efforts by working in coalitions, including the following:
SAFE California - FCLCA serves on the steering committee of this coalition to replace the death penalty and to pass legislation to protect the innocent from wrongful conviction.
We work for criminal justice reform through Citizens United for a Responsible Budget (CURB).
We are working with Community Initiatives for Visiting Immigrants in Confinement (CIVIC), the California Immigrant Policy Center (CIPC) and the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights to co-sponsor AB 1876, the Phone Justice bill. Read more.
We are co-sponsors of SB 1010, the California Fair Sentencing Act, along with Drug Policy Alliance, the American Civil Liberties Untion, A New Way of LIfe; California Attorneys for Criminal Justice, California Public Defenders Association, California State Conference of the NAACP, Californians for Safety and Justice, the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, the National Council of La Raza and the William C. Velazquez Institute. Read more.