NAC Update
CALIFORNIA
State Park & Rec Commission

December 13, 2010

RESOURCES

PETITION FOR DESIGNATION AND SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS

LAW AND POLICY

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                     NATURIST ACTION COMMITTEE
                             UPDATE
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                   http://www.naturistaction.org
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Copyright 2010 by the Naturist Action Committee, which is responsible for its content. Permission is granted for the posting, forwarding or redistribution of this message, provided that it is reproduced in its entirety and without alteration.

DATE: December 13, 2010
SUBJECT: California
TO: Naturists and other concerned citizens

Dear Naturist,

This is an Update from the Naturist Action Committee on an important issue.

NATURISTS ADDRESS CALIFORNIA PARK AND RECREATION COMMISSION
Scores of concerned naturists have responded to the NAC Action Alert of November 23, 2010, by sending letters and e-mails to the California Park and Recreation Commission. Reflecting an originality and sense of genuine personal involvement that have come to typify messages from naturists, writers from California and across the continent have requested that the Commission set aside land for clothing-optional recreation in units of the State Park system.

NAC expresses its enthusiastic gratitude to the large numbers of you who have taken the time to make a difference by contacting the Commission. Your efforts are already having an important impact!

A REPORT ON THE COMMISSION’S PUBLIC MEETING OF DECEMBER 10
Since the presentation by the Naturist Action Committee to the Park and Rec Commission of a petition calling for designation of places set apart for clothing-optional recreation, NAC has been following up with letters to the Commission and personal appearances at meetings of the Commission.

In addition to issuing a call for correspondence, NAC asked for local naturists to attend a public meeting of the State Park and Recreation Commission that was held in San Diego on Friday, December 10, 2010.

FORTY naturists attended that meeting, making up an impressive two-thirds of the audience. Of those who attended, TWENTY-SIX addressed the Commission directly during the portion of the meeting reserved for public comment. For almost a solid hour, Park and Rec Commission members heard from naturists.

NAC executive director Bob Morton led off, and NAC board member Allen Baylis batted cleanup. In between, the gratifyingly diverse array of naturist speakers included women and men, young and old, straight and gay, NAC and NEF Area Representatives, lifelong Californians, immigrants from other countries, and even three naturists who have received recent citations for nudity at San Onofre State Beach, as a result of the arbitrary change of policy there.

NAC appreciates the impressive voluntary participation of those attended, those who brought their “Nude Beaches YES!” signs, and those who spoke to the Commission. When the supporters of designation for areas of clothing-optional recreation were asked to stand in the audience and be seen, the members of the Commission couldn’t help but recognize the grass roots nature of the message.

The matter of designation was not a Commission agenda item, and was therefore not considered in a vote. That was intentional; NAC had not asked for an agenda item. Instead, NAC chose the “public comment” method of presentation as the most effective way to advance an issue that typically benefits from personalization and familiarization BEFORE official commitment.

NAC will, of course, be asking for the Commission’s official commitment. The Commission has the authority to designate, and it has the responsibility to establish general policy and to recommend policy to the Department of Parks and Recreation. NAC seeks both designation and an accompanying policy for clothing-optional recreation.

OPPOSITION
The opposition to designation is NOT coming from the public. After all, the 2009 NEF California Poll showed that an impressive SIXTY-TWO PERCENT of California adults favor the designation of areas for clothing-optional recreation in State Parks. That California-specific opinion survey, which was commissioned just last year by the Naturist Education Foundation and was independently administered by Zogby International, shows that an overwhelming SEVENTY-NINE PERCENT of Californians agree that people should be able to enjoy nude sunbathing at a beach or other area that is designated for that purpose.

Further, the same poll reveals that SIXTY PERCENT of Californians are NOT offended by the non-sexual nudity of others.

Rather, the opposition to designation is coming from a few bureaucrats within the Department of Parks and Recreation. (Remember that the Department is different from the Commission.) Kathryn Tobias, the Department’s Senior Staff Counsel, wrote in a memorandum dated December 10, 2010, that the Cahill Policy “no longer applies to any unit of the State Park System.”

Simply put, those public servants who oppose designation for clothing-optional recreation are NOT being responsive the wishes, the preferences, the expressed opinions and the will of the people of California.

THE NEED FOR YOUR INVOLVEMENT CONTINUES
Whether or not you’ve written or attended the meeting in San Diego, you can still help. NAC asks that you write to the Commission. Send your comments by e-mail, fax or surface mail. If you haven’t yet expressed yourself to the Commission, now is your chance. Those who have already written or have attended the meeting on December 10 are also encouraged to write again. We should be prepared to sing more than one verse of this song.

WHO SHOULD WRITE?
NAC is requesting ALL NATURISTS and other concerned individuals to contact California officials on this important matter, regardless of your place of residence. California understands the importance of out-of-state visitors who come to enjoy the state’s beaches, lakes and streams. The opportunity to provide diverse recreational opportunities applies to those visitors, as well as to California residents. While all are encouraged to make their voices heard, the participation of Californians is, of course, particularly important.

Send a letter, a fax or an e-mail. Phone calls will likely be ineffective in this specific context.

     California State Park & Recreation Commission
     P.O. Box 942896
     Sacramento, CA 94296
     FAX: (916) 654-6374
     Louis Nastro, Assistant to the Commission
     E-MAIL:
LNastro@parks.ca.gov

Send a copy to:

     California Department of Natural Resources  
     Natural Resources Agency
     1416 Ninth Street, Suite 1311
     Sacramento, CA 95814
     FAX: (916) 653-8102
     E-MAIL:
secretary@resources.ca.gov

NAC encourages you to send copies of your faxes and paper mail to:
      NAC, P.O. Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903.
Send copies of your e-mails to:
     
CA@naturistaction.org


WHAT SHOULD YOU SAY?
When you write:

   a) Be polite.

   b) Be known. Give your name and address. If you are a California resident or a frequent visitor to California, be sure to point that out. Anonymous letters have very little impact.

   c) Be focused. Keep your correspondence brief and on target.

   d) Be positive. Remember that we’re trying to ENCOURAGE the Park and Recreation Commission to do something. Please do not take a scolding tone.

   e) Be clear. Say that you SUPPORT NAC’s petition asking for designation of clothing-optional areas in units of the State Park System.

   f) Be appreciative. Thank the Commission for its consideration of the letters it has already received. Thank the Commission for its attention to the naturists who spoke at the December 10 meeting in San Diego.

Additional writing points:

   a) NAC and fifteen of its allies have submitted to the Commission a thoughtful petition that addresses the issues of designation and policy for clothing-optional recreation throughout the ENTIRE State of California.

This is NOT just about San Onofre State Beach. Although that beach was the first State Park unit at which DPR has killed its policy for managing clothing-optional recreation, it will not be the last. The present lack of a comprehensive statewide policy threatens ALL clothing-optional areas in California State Park units. Consider the implications for Black’s (Torrey Pines), Gaviota, Bonny Doon and many others.

   b) For thirty years, the Department’s Cahill Policy allowed a means to manage for clothing-optional recreation in units of the State Park system. The nullification of the Cahill Policy has left the department with no statewide policy to address a form of recreation that’s obviously popular with the public. The submitted petition proposes a specific way to address the management of clothing-optional recreation.

   c) Using statistics that are misleading (and too often just plain wrong), officials of the California Parks and Rec Department have attempted to point to lewd behavior as a reason for prohibiting nudity. The public is not well served by such improperly supported allegations. The Naturist Action Committee has made the Department and the Commission aware of the misrepresentations and will be doing so even more specifically in the coming weeks. 

WHAT’S NEXT
NAC is working with the California Park and Recreation Commission to determine the most appropriate way to proceed. Please watch for future Action Alerts, Advisories and Updates from the Naturist Action Committee.

MORE INFORMATION AND RESOURCES
Additional information and links are available, along with this NAC Action Alert on the web site of the Naturist Action Committee.

  
www.naturistaction.org

Select "Alerts, Advisories and Updates," and find this NAC Update under Current Updates.

PLEASE HELP NAC TO CONTINUE HELPING NATURISTS!
The Naturist Action Committee is the volunteer nonprofit political adjunct to The Naturist Society. NAC exists to advance and protect the rights and interests of naturists throughout North America. Fighting for the clothing-optional recreational use of public land is expensive. To do its job, NAC relies entirely on the voluntary generosity of supporters like you.

Please take a moment to send a donation to:

   NAC
   PO Box 132
   Oshkosh, WI 54903

Or call toll free (800) 886-7230 to donate by phone using your MasterCard, Visa or Discover Card. Or use your credit card to make a convenient online donation:
www.naturistaction.org/donate/

Thank you for choosing to make a difference!

Naturally,

Bob Morton
Executive Director
Naturist Action Committee

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Naturist Action Committee (NAC) - PO Box 132, Oshkosh, WI 54903
Executive Dir. Bob Morton       -
execdir@naturistaction.org
Board Member Allen Baylis      -
rab@baylislaw.com
Online Rep. Dennis Kirkpatrick  -
naturist@sunclad.com
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