District Days offers us the opportunity to meet with our elected officials (or a staff member) to discuss our passion: libraries. Check your representative’s web site or call their office (read this first) to find out what opportunities they offer to connect with constituents during District Days from August 8-September 5.’ Your representative might host town hall meetings, assign staff members to meet with constituents or be willing to visit your library. Whatever form of contact you can make, prepare your points ahead of time to make the most of everyone’s time.
Fortunately, ALA and YALSA offer a variety of tools to get informed and create talking points in a snap.
- Get familiar with current pending congressional legislation and your state’s legislation here. It makes a world of difference to arrive prepared to speak on something specific and relevant such as pending legislation.
- If broadband and internet connectivity support are important to you, check out this excellent tool for preparing state-by-state reports on this issue.’ You can generate statistical reports, including comparative data.
- Connect with your state to find out which issues are most crucial, how to contact your reps, and connect with other librarians in your states to advocate together here.
- Don’t forget to thank your representative for supporting libraries! You can research what legislation they have supported by checking out their web sites or searching this nifty Congress voting database from the Washington Post.
- Check out the complete advocacy clearinghouse ALA has created here for more information and ideas.’
Your presence and work during District Days DOES make a difference!