Citizen Advocacy 101
Talking to Elected Officials
Be Poignant- Correspondence should be personal, brief, concise and it should address only one issue.
Be Direct- State your purpose upfront. If you are a voter in their district, state this as well. Support Your Position- Include personal information about how this bill/policy effects you, your community or your family. Use factual data or examples when necessary to support your view. Be Timely- Make sure you are up-to-date on an issue and be timely in your response.
Be Open- Be sure to include contact information and feel free to ask for a written response. You can offer to talk more about the issue by phone or in-person. Ask them to state their position on the issue; you are entitled to know. State your appreciation- Thank them for their time, consideration or support.
Be Proactive- get involved early on an issue, rather than waiting until the last minute.
For written correspondence:
For Senators………………….Dear Senator (Last Name)
I-CAN website: www.icansaveland.com (Enter your address and find out who your legislators are.)
Indiana General Assembly: http://www.in.gov/legislative/
Ways to Contact Your Legislators
Indiana State Senate
Indiana House of Representatives
Mailing Address for Both Chamber
Visiting the Indiana Statehouse
If you are in the Statehouse, there is a Legislative Information Center on the main Floor (second floor) of the Statehouse. The public can have access to file copies of bills, amendments and floor action. If you want a copy made, you will have to pay. There are also computers available outside the Information Center from which you can access bills and print copies of bills and fiscal impact statements at no charge.
The House and Senate chambers are on the third floor, with public viewing galleries accessed on the fourth floor for both chambers. If you want to meet with you legislator, you can ask the receptionists/doormen where your legislator’s office is located.
During the legislative session, public parking is not available in the state parking garages, but there is private parking garages across from the Statehouse of Capital and Washington Streets. Additionally, there are parking meters on Washington Street.
Thanks to the Nature Conservancy for these great tips!
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