Frequently Asked Questions

IS VOLUNTEER TRAINING MANDATORY?

Yes. For your convenience trainings are being offered via conference call this year. Please visit our Volunteer Training Form to RSVP for one of the sessions. Space on the calls is limited, so sign up ASAP.

If you are unable to participate in the training calls, an in-person orientation will be offered on Thursday May 18th at 7 PM in Room 100AB of the Sacramento Convention Center. Plan to arrive no later than 6:45 PM to allow time to check in.

WHEN DO I GET MY VOLUNTEER CREDENTIAL?

You will receive your volunteer credential upon checking in to your first assigned shift.

I’M NOT VOLUNTEERING UNTIL SATURDAY AFTERNOON, BUT I’D LIKE TO CHECK EVENTS OUT BEFORE THAT. CAN I GET MY CREDENTIAL EARLIER?

If you’d like to get your volunteer credential early, you can come help stuff delegate bags at the Sacramento Convention Center before the in-person orientation on Thursday (May 18, 2017) evening. Meet our team in Hall B at 4:00 PM.

I’M NOT ABLE COMPLETE THE TASK I’VE BEEN ASSIGNED.

If you are unable to complete an assigned shift or need to change your duties, please contact the volunteer coordinator via email at Volunteer2017@cadem.org or call 916-503-7321 ASAP. If at convention you find that you are unable to complete your assigned shift due to limitations, please inform your supervisor and return to the Volunteer Office. We will try to find an assignment that works for you!

I DIDN’T GET THE ASSIGNMENT I ASKED FOR, OR MY SHIFT IS TOO EARLY/TOO LATE!

We tried our best to accommodate everyone’s choices. If you really, really, really can’t complete the assignment, please contact the volunteer coordinator. If we are unable to accommodate a requested change, we ask that you try to remain flexible and still have fun this weekend.

WHERE IS THE CONVENTION?

Sacramento Convention Center 1400 J St, Sacramento, CA 95814

WHAT SHOULD I WEAR?

Please dress in business casual attire, as appropriate for your assignments. Definitely wear comfortable shoes (sneakers are ok!), as you may do a lot of walking. We also suggest bringing a scarf or light jacket as temperatures do vary from location to location.

Remember that while you volunteer, you are representing the California Democratic Party, so please refrain from campaigning on behalf of any candidates or issues during your shifts. This includes the display of campaign or candidate buttons, t-shirts, handheld signs, etc.

I ALSO VOLUNTEER/WORK FOR A CAMPAIGN. MAY I WEAR RELATED T- SHIRT/BUTTON/FLAIR WHILE I VOLUNTEER?

No. Please wear comfortable, business-casual attire. You will be asked to remove any campaign paraphernalia and refrain from actively campaigning for any candidate or issue while you volunteer because you are representing the California Democratic Party.

I HAVE A PETITION TO FIX CITIZENS UNITED/IMMIGRATION/CALIFORNIA. MAY I GATHER SIGNATURES?

No. Please refrain from campaigning for any candidate or issue during your volunteer shift as you are representing the California Democratic Party.

WHERE CAN I PARK?

Parking lots and street parking are available at and around the Sacramento Convention Center. Click here for more details.

WHERE DO I CHECK IN BEFORE MY VOLUNTEER SHIFTS?


The Volunteer Office is located in Room 100AB. 

I HAVE TWO SHIFTS TODAY AND I’VE ALREADY CHECKED IN AT THE VOLUNTEER OFFICE FOR THE FIRST ONE. DO I HAVE TO GO BACK TO THE VOLUNTEER OFFICE TO CHECK IN BEFORE MY NEXT ASSIGNMENT?

Yes, please! There are a lot of moving parts at convention. Not only do we need to know that you have reported for your next assignment, there’s a chance that we could need to reassign you to a different task. We greatly appreciate your flexibility and patience as we all work together to keep this major event running smoothly.

WHERE CAN I LEAVE MY STUFF?

We strongly recommend bringing only what you absolutely need with you while volunteering. Because the Volunteer Office is not large and we do not have extra space or the staff on hand to monitor your valuables, you will not be able to leave items with us. A good rule of thumb: Bring only what you’re comfortable carrying with you throughout your shift(s).

CAN I LEAVE MY VOLUNTEER SHIFT EARLY?

We are depending on our volunteers to support the operational needs of the convention - your full commitment is essential.

There may be times when you feel that a shift is overstaffed, but please let your supervisors make the decision to dismiss you early if that’s appropriate. Chances are that there could merely be a lull in the action, and you will be busy again very shortly.

If you must leave early, please let your supervisor know, so they can alert the volunteer office and arrange for a replacement.

WHO CAN I ASK FOR HELP IF I’M LOST OR DON’T KNOW WHAT I’M SUPPOSED TO DO?

Staff and volunteers in the Volunteer Office (Room 100AB) on the first level of the convention center are available to help you with questions. If you can’t find the Volunteer Office, call the volunteer line (916-503-7321).

You may also see a handful of people throughout the convention center wearing bright orange t-shirts with VOLUNTEER LEAD on the front. Don’t hesitate to ask these folks if you need any help.
Volunteer-lead

I LIVE FAR AWAY FROM SACRAMENTO. WHERE DO I STAY?

Visit http://www.unionhotelguide.org to find a list of hotels in the area. We encourage use of these hotels because their workers are unionized and the facilities are ADA accessible.

WHERE DO I EAT?

During the convention light, packaged snacks will be provided in the Volunteer Office. It’s a great idea to bring a refillable water bottle with you, but otherwise we ask that you refrain from eating or drinking during your shift. There is a Starbucks kiosk in the convention center, and many other restaurants are nearby. Check out a short list of restaurants and convenience stores here.

WHAT DO I DRINK?

Water, coffee and tea will be available in the Volunteer Office throughout the convention, and several of the smaller meetings will have water service. We recommend bringing your own refillable water bottle to use throughout your convention experience.

CAN I BRING A FRIEND OR FAMILY MEMBER TO VOLUNTEER WITH ME?

We have had an overwhelming number of volunteers sign up to help out this year, with some folks still on the waiting list. If you have a friend or family member who would like to join you, please have them email Volunteer2017@cadem.org before convention. We are doing our best to include everyone, but that may not be possible this year.

WHAT IF I CAN’T MAKE IT?

Before convention, please email or call the volunteer coordinator at Volunteer2017@cadem.org or 916-503-7321.

If you need to cancel during convention - even if it’s the very last minute – please call (no email) us at 916-503-7321. It’s helpful for us to know not to expect you.

WHAT IF I’M LATE?

If you’re running late to your assigned shift, please call the Volunteer Office at 916-503-7321. Please do NOT email if you are late.

WILL I GET TO SEE ANY OF THE SPEECHES/CAUCUSES?

After completing your shift, you may use your non-transferrable volunteer credential to access many of the convention’s scheduled events, including workshops, general session and social events. Delegates and paid observers will be given preferential seating for general session and workshops, etc., but volunteers are welcome as long as space is available.

While you may enjoy the convention between your shifts, remember that we are depending on you to return to the Volunteer Office and complete all of your assigned shifts.

WILL I BE ABLE TO ATTEND PARTIES?

Many campaigns, caucuses and interest groups host parties and hospitality suites throughout the weekend. Some may have their own requirements for entry or credentials, but many will be open to all convention attendees. If you attend a party where alcohol is served, please don’t drive!

CAN I TAKE PICTURES?

Yes, but if you are working an event, please remember that you are there to fulfill your duties first and foremost. Please do not step away from your assigned task.

IF A REPORTER OR BLOGGER ASKS ME A QUESTION ABOUT VOLUNTEERING/MY OPINION/WHAT IS GOING ON AROUND ME, CAN I ANSWER THEM?

No. You are not authorized to talk to the press, and there is no such thing as “off the record.” Even positive statements can be taken out of context and may reflect negatively on Convention. If a member of the media asks you for a quote, please send them to your supervisor, who will direct them to the appropriate people. The only people authorized to speak on behalf of the California Democratic Party are our Chairman, John Burton, and our Communications Director. If you speak to the press, it will result in your immediate dismissal.

 

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