Call your legislator

Calling your legislator about issues of importance to you can make a huge difference in the way that they vote, and how seriously they consider your issues. While some people are very comfortable calling their legislators, others find the idea of picking up the telephone quite daunting.

Here are a few tips on a painless call that can make a big impact:

-Acknowlege the person answering the phone by name! Most legislators work closely with all of their staff and rely on them to filter the phone calls received. Ask to speak to your legislator about the issue. ex. “Good Morning, Jane. I am calling about the midwifery bill. Is Senator Smith/ Representative Brown available?”

-Don’t be discouraged if your legislator is unable to come to the phone. They are busy and quite often have meetings in addition to the time they spend in session. Leave a message letting them know who you are, as well as who you are in the community. Make your point, using good facts. Let them know how the issue affects you, your family and friends. Don’t be afraid to personalize the issue.

-Don’t get too long winded in your message. The person answering the phone needs to be able to understand your position,and you showing respect for their time can make a huge impact, too.
-Ask for a specific action. “Please support House Bill _______” or “Please vote Senate Bill ____ out of your committee.”
-Remember that if you want to talk directly with your legislator in addition to leaving a message, it is perfectly acceptable ask for an appointment for a phone conversation.
Finally, phone calls don’t need to be painful and dull. Depending on the purpose of your call, a brief 30 seconds may be all it takes!

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