Acting Locally

Town Meetings
Positive Feedback

Town meetings are regularly scheduled by members of Congress during designated work periods, holidays, or on weekends in their home districts. Call your Congresspersonís local office and ask when town meetings have been scheduled for your district. Attending a town meeting is a great strategy that is not used often enough. Even just one person speaking about the issue to the Congressperson in public will help to get other citizens on your side, and put pressure on the member of Congress. It can help you obtain a private meeting with your representative at a later date to discuss the issue further.

These meetings usually include a question and answer session. Be prepared to ask a clear and direct question, and take the opportunity to give a brief overview of the issues: "Our national forests are being destroyed by unsustainable forestry practices... Congressperson, will you cosponsor the Act to Save America's Forests?"TOP

Positive Feedback

If your member has shown real concern and dedication to good issues, he or she deserves your positive support. By showing appreciation for her or his stand and being willing to help her or him stay in office, you can inspire your member to take stronger forest protection positions and become a leader in Congress.

There are many ways to do this. A few ideas:

There are many legitimate reasons why a legislator who truly supports your position will remain unwilling to take a public position. Often, the more powerful members consider themselves deal-makers and don't want to weaken their negotiating positions. Yet they may be able to help at a critical moment. A public stand represents leadership, and you should continue to work for this type of commitment. TOP