To those of you who were among the 304 advocates who participated in the 2019 Leadership and Advocacy Conference “Hill Day” on Wednesday, April 17th, you might be asking – What’s next?

If you’ve been bit by the advocacy bug – there are still a plethora of ways for you to get involved with your local Congressional office. Here are some easy steps:

The FIRST thing you should do – if you haven’t already done so of course – is send a follow-up email thanking the Congressional staffer you visited during LAC for taking the time out of their day to discuss hospice and palliative care. According to the Congressional Management Foundation (CMF), staffers take an average of 28 Meetings per day. Imagine how easy it is to forget information discussed or confuse one organization with another. This email is not only a common courtesy but can also remind the staffer of the important information discussed and reiterate their need to cosponsor our current legislation. Check out this video by the Congressional Management on “Why Following Up Matters”.

Secondly, follow your member of Congress on social media! Most offices regularly check their social media to see what’s happening in their communities and engage with their constituents. Mention them on Twitter and ask for their support of legislation like the Rural Access to Hospice Act[SS2]  and the Palliative Care and Hospice Education and Training Act (PCHETA/S.1190). Enter their name in your search box and they should pop right up!

Lastly, check out our Advocacy Toolkit for advocacy tip sheets, letters and email templates, advocacy 101 webinars, and other resources that will help you build connections with your Members of Congress.

Remember that the “Hill Day” was only the first step toward making a change for the hospice and palliative care community. It takes consistent outreach and engagement to get a bill passed. Keep pushing!