Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Learn How to Effectively Train Your Advocates!

I’ve decided it’s time to share my Guru secrets with others trying to spread the advocacy gospel, and I’m starting with a workshop on April 17th titled How to Deliver an Effective Advocacy Training. It’s designed for anyone responsible for training advocates on everything from general grassroots engagement to having a great meeting on Capitol Hill. You’ll find more information by clicking on the pretty picture below:

You might wonder why I’d teach other people what I do for a living. It’s mainly because people have asked me to. Also I’m getting old and it’s time to pass along some of the Advocacy Guru’s secrets (which is what I understand gurus do).

There’s a whole long list of what we’ll cover on the registration page.  It’s the usual stuff (pre-event webinars, getting advocates ready for the hill, integrating role-playing, what advocates want, etc.). Also, all participants will receive template power points, handouts for advocates and a step-by-step guide on how to use it all.

If you’re interested, here are the details. If you’re not, just stop reading.

When: April 17, 2015 Ι 12:30 pm - 4:00 pm

Where: 1030 15th St NW, Ste 750 West, Washington, DC 20005

Register: Click here to register online. $299 includes access to the half day seminar, all materials and working lunch.

Questions? Call 1-888-265-0600 

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

How to Connect with Federal Agencies

If you are for or against certain regulations within pieces of legislation like The Affordable Care Act or the Food and Drug Act and want to advocate on those issues, you may think that you should ask your Members of Congress take steps to change the law. However, unless the legislation you care about is up for reauthorization, you’re not going to get very far by asking your Senators and Representative to change the way the law is enforced.  It’s actually federal agencies (for example, the FDA or the FCC) that are responsible for creating the federal regulations that enforce the laws passed by Congress. So if you want a regulation within a passed law to be changed, that falls within the appropriate federal agency’s jurisdiction.

The problem is that reaching out directly to federal agencies will not be incredibly influential on your part. This is because you’re not the one who puts the FCC commissioners in their jobs, and you’re not the one who helps directly finance the commissioner’s budget—Congress is. Congress sets the appropriations and approves the commissioners, so they’re going to be the ones who have the most influence. Since you, as a constituent, influence your legislators and since legislators influence federal agencies, the best course of action for you to take is to ask your Members of Congress to reach out to federal agencies on your behalf. Ask them to write a letter to the agency in regards to the particular regulation you want changed. If you have a question about a regulation, talk to the Legislative Correspondents in your Member’s office and they will kick that question over to the Congressional Relations Office of the appropriate agency. Follow up every couple of weeks until you get a response. The more you demonstrate that you’re interested in it (and the more polite you are about it), the more likely it is that you’ll get a response. 

-  Written by:  Kaytee Yakacki