Effective public policy starts with you. Learn how you can engage with your government to improve the lives of Minnesotans with disabilities.
Send an Advocacy Letter
One way to engage with your government is to send an advocacy letter—by email or by regular mail—to your senator or representative asking them to support a particular bill. Note: If you email your legislators, we recommend “CC-ing” (carbon copying) their legislative assistants.
Find your senator or representative using the Who Represents Me form. Each result has a Contact link that will take you to the legislator’s page. You can find email addresses for legislative assistants on the Senate Staff and House Staff pages.
To assist you in your advocacy, here is a letter template. Be sure to personalize the letter by filling in the information in brackets. It is important that you tell your legislator:
- How your personal experiences connect to this issue.
- How this legislation would help you, your loved ones, or members of the community.
Dear [Legislator’s Name],
My name is [Your Name], and I’m a constituent from [your home area]. I’m writing to urge you to support [bill number], which would [bill description].
It is important to me to take the time to contact you about this because [2 to 3 sentence personal story connecting your personal experiences to this issue].
I believe this legislation is what we need in the community to address this issue. I think it would make a difference because [2 to 3 sentences about specifics of the legislation that would help you, loved ones, and/or your community].
Please support [bill number] and support our community in addressing this need.
[Your Home Address]
Become Your Own Advocate
Partners in Policymaking
Partners in Policymaking is an acclaimed advocacy and leadership training program focused on supporting people with developmental disabilities. Students come away from the course with a variety of skills and resources for community organizing and taking part in the legislative process.
Making Your Case
The Minnesota Governor’s Council on Developmental Disabilities offers an extensive guide to lobbying your legislator. The guide includes strategies for the entire legislative process, including:
- How to get meetings with legislators
- How to organize a committee testimony
- How to use social media to support legislation
“Making Your Case” also includes insights on the nuances of advocating at the Capitol, including:
- Etiquette for meeting with legislators
- Attending committee hearings
- Engaging with legislative staff
Whether you’re looking to engage with a legislator or organize a campaign with other concerned citizens, this guide is a useful resource.