A majority of vaccine legislation is handled at the state level. Calling or writing to your state representative’s office is an easy way to make your voice heard. Call your state representative for house bills or your state senator for senate bills. CLICK HERE to learn about your state legislature and find out who your representative is.
It is particularly important to reach out when there is a hearing scheduled on an issue or when a bill has yet not gone to a vote. When a number of concerned citizens call about a particular issue, it definitely gets noticed!
WHOM TO CALL
You don’t have to talk to the legislator directly – their staff keeps track of constituent calls and your opinion will be valued. You can ask to speak to the aide who handles public health issues, or simply let the person who answers the phone know that you are a constituent and that you support or oppose a particular item.
WHO ARE YOU?
Elected officials are most interested in the opinions of their constituents so let them know that you are a voter in their district and tell them what city or town you live in.
WHY ARE YOU CALLING?
After you introduce your self, let them know that you are calling to express your support or opposition of a particular item.
WHY DOES IT MATTER?
Make a personal connection about why this issue matters to you. Let them know something about you – are you are a doctor or medical professional? Are you are a parent or grandparent? Have you or someone you know suffered from vaccine preventable disease?
If you are calling about a specific piece of legislation, be prepared with the title or bill number and have one or two talking points that support your opinion.
WHAT ACTION DO YOU WANT TAKEN?
End your call with the action you want your representative to take – voting yes on a bill, for example.
Legislative staff handle a number of calls a day so keep your statements brief.