You Did It, Let’s Keep It Up
By George Holliday, Chair
Yes, this was a great summer and you made things happen. The PCB Advocacy & Governmental Affairs Committee (AGAC) planned a state-wide call-in, during the week of Monday, July 7 through Friday, July 11. We invited and urged all to join us in contacting our representatives to encourage their sponsorship of H.R. 4040, the Alice Cogswell and Anne Sullivan Macy Act. Members were asked to give their contact information to the person with whom they spoke, and to request a call back to confirm whether or not the legislator would agree to support the bill. During that week, I received forty-eight email responses and several telephone calls informing me of your interactions with legislative offices. I am very impressed and sincerely thank you for stepping up.
Currently, there are twenty co-sponsors for H.R. 4040. The bill has been referred to the House Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary, and Secondary Education.
The next call-in week is planned for late September when the committee will address H.R. 3749: Medicare Demonstration of Coverage for Low Vision Devices Act of 2013. Watch for the request to make calls. Let’s encourage every PCB member, as well as our family members and friends, to bombard our legislators with calls. It is vital that as many people call as possible. Please don’t assume that someone else will call. We all need to make our voice heard.
Did you listen to the second episode of “Talking Advocacy & Government” (TAG)? Members of PCB shared their experiences as they relate to H.R. 3749. The next episode of TAG will be a live performance, and I mean PERFORMANCE!! (with capital letters and exclamation marks). It will be presented during the convention. There will be participation questions and comments to get the membership involved. It’s one more reason not to miss the convention.
PCB is publically in support of the “Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities” (CRPD) treaty. The AGAC reminds us that, while differing opinions are refreshing, when contacting legislators, members expressing a differing viewpoint from PCB’s position should do so as individual citizens. These individuals must remember not to use the name of either their chapter or the state affiliate when expressing their differing opinion.