The Dermatology Nurses' Association
Nurses serving nurses for more than 30 years!

Advocacy Tool Kit

Basic Tips to Effect Legislative Change

1. Know who your legislators are – State Senator, State Representative(s), Members of Congress –- meet them and be in contact with them often on issues that you care about.

  • The familiar is best. Former Congressional Speaker of the House Tip O’Neal named his book “All Politics are Local”, because it starts with local and personal relationships.

2. Legislators like to hear from (and listen more to) the people in their own Districts.

  • You are the constituents who live in their community.
  • Your voice really does have a greater impact with the Legislator(s) than anyone who is not from their District, (i.e. the cities and/or towns that they represent).

3. Know about your issue and have a persuasive message with an effective and achievable solution to the issue. Be polite and non-argumentative as you discuss your position. Keep it brief.

4. Make the "ask." Don't  forget to ask for something. After you present the issue, clearly define what it is you want them to do.

5. Follow up. The difference between a good meeting and a good outcome is the "follow up."

For more information, read:

Tips for Writing Letters to the Editor

Helpful Lobbying Tips