U.S. Poverty Weekly Update April 25, 2017

April 25, 2017

U.S. Poverty Campaigns

Weekly Update | April 25, 2017

“What comes next? How about we ask for affordable health care for all Americans, not one that includes tax breaks for the rich and cuts millions from their health care insurance.”

—RESULTS Snohomish (WA) volunteer Willie Dickerson on an April 20 letter to the editor in the Tacoma Weekly

In This Week’s Update:

Quick Action: Tell Congress to Make Tax Reform Fair for All

Take Action!

Got Two Minutes? Tell Congress to Improve Health Care in America, Not Decimate It

It seems like déjà vu all over again. Smarting from the defeat of the American Health Care Act (ACHA) last month, leaders in the House and Trump Administration officials are working to revive the bill. Sadly, they’re doing so by making it worse. Last week, it was revealed that leaders of two factions of the Republican caucus – the “Tuesday Group” (moderates) and Freedom Caucus (ultra-conservative) – had come to an agreement on a possible amendment to the ACHA. This amendment would allow states to opt out of the ACA provision preventing insurance companies from charging exorbitantly higher rates for persons with pre-existing conditions, one of the most popular parts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Sadly, the parts of the bill causing 24 million people to lose health insurance and the $880 billion in cuts and structural changes to Medicaid would remain intact. A vote could come in the next few weeks. At this time, there are no indications that these changes will sway enough lawmakers to now support the ACHA. Let’s make sure that never happens.

TAKE ACTION: Let Congress know that the ACHA is bad for America and that it should stay dead. Send a letter to the editor to your local paper calling your members of Congress by name to protect Medicaid and oppose this plan. Use our updated media alert to send your letter today. When you get published, please send a link to your letter to Jos Linn ([email protected]). Stay tuned. If this new ACHA bill comes up for a vote, we'll let you know what you can do to help stop it.

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Got Ten Minutes? Follow Up from Lobby Meetings and Look for Meetings in May (April Action)

Thank you to everyone who researched, prepared for, and attended lobby meetings and town halls this month. It was a successful month with RESULTS volunteers having 13 face-to-face encounters with their members of Congress. In addition, some of you met with aides and others attended events but didn’t get to ask a question. We thank you for these necessary efforts. If we are to stave off another attempt to gut Medicaid, ensure tax reform is fair for all Americans, and protect SNAP from deep cuts, it’s going to take advocacy like this to make it happen.

Now that Congress is back in Washington, it’s time to follow up from your meetings. The face-to-face meeting you had or the question you asked in a town hall need to stay fresh in lawmakers’ minds. Contact the aides you’ve met with or talked to to thank them for their time, reiterate your request, and check on its status. This follow-up is essential in being a successful advocate.

If you didn’t have a meeting or attend a town hall in April, the House will be on recess May 8-12 and both the House and Senate will be out the week of Memorial Day (May 29-June 2). Contact schedulers now and request a meeting for those weeks. Also, if you haven’t checked in with the DC policy aides on our issues recently, now is the time to do it.

TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to follow up from your meetings in April. Contact House and Senate aides you met with to thank them and to check in/reiterate your requests (find request sheets on our Issues page). Also, start requesting face-to-face meetings for the May recesses. The April Action has resources to help you, and scheduler and aide names are on the RESULTS Elected Officials page. Once you make your request, please follow up until you get an answer. Once you get a meeting scheduled, please contact Meredith Dodson ([email protected]) to help you get ready and enter the meeting info at: http://tinyurl.com/100daysmeetings.

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Got Twenty Minutes? Use the RESULTS Conference as an Organizing Tool

For months, we’ve been urging you to register for the 2017 RESULTS International Conference. It’s the biggest and best event of the year for RESULTS. As always, it will include plethora of skills and issues workshops to help you be the best advocate you can be, nationally and internationally renowned speakers to inform and inspire you, a powerful Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill, and the chance to meet and reunite with friends and advocates from around the world. These are staples of the Conference each year and are more than worth the time and money you put into it.

But another asset of the Conference is how it motivates new people to become committed advocates. Rarely will you ever meet someone new to the Conference who walks away disappointed. Quite the opposite – the RESULTS Conference inspires and energizes them to do more. Why not use this energy and excitement to transform someone you know from spectator to activist? You probably know someone looking to become a more engaged citizen, but don’t know how. Or perhaps someone who you used to be involved but has not been active for a while. Anyone can get inspired at the RESULTS Conference. Help someone you know find out.

TAKE ACTION: Take twenty minutes to register for the 2017 RESULTS International Conference (July 22-25 in Washington, DC) and then send an invitation to someone you know to attend and share the experience with you. You’ll be giving them a gift.

Remember, the Early Bird rate for RESULTS volunteers ($150; and just $200 for non-volunteers) lasts just a few more weeks – until May 15. Also, if you need financial help getting to the Conference, apply for scholarship assistance at www.tinyurl.com/RESULTSScholUS.

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RESULTS Outreach to Grow Our Movement

This past weekend, RESULTS volunteers got the chance to promote RESULTS and our model of advocacy before hundreds of faith advocates from around the country. Three of RESULTS Experts on Poverty, Yolanda Gordan, Tianna Gaines-Turner, and Angela (Nike) Sutton, presented at Ecumenical Advocacy Days in two workshops on Saturday afternoon. In a session on “Proposals to Dismantle the Safety Net – and the Potential Impact on People of Color”, Yolanda shared about the importance of the Medicaid program for her family (similar to her remarks on our April National Webinar). Nike opened the second session, “The Lived Experiences of Poverty and Racism: Using Your Story to Shape Policy”, with her story, followed by Tianna sharing how she’s used her story in interactions with policymakers (such as this panel with Senator Bob Casey last Friday) and in the media (like her Washington Post piece). Yolanda also lead a training on how to craft your story. During yesterday’s Lobby Day, Yolanda got a chance to take a “selfie” with her senator, Senator Lindsey Graham. Thank you to our Experts for representing RESULTS so powerfully with hundreds of advocates!

RESULTS is looking to maximize our impact in this challenging political environment. Therefore, we're expanding our presence in key states across the U.S. RESULTS U.S. Poverty Grassroots Organizer Kristy Martino is working on outreach and advocacy presentations in both Oregon (Portland area) and West Virginia (Morgantown area). If you know folks in these places that might want to get involved and take action, please connect them to her directly at [email protected]

We're also reaching out to deepen our impact in these target states: Mississippi, Arizona, South Dakota, Kentucky, Nebraska, Alabama, and Florida. If you know people in these areas, please let Kristy know. And just as a friendly reminder, REAL Change is a great opportunity to get the next generation of leaders involved! Let's magnify our voices all across America.

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Quick News

Group Planning Coming in May. This is the final week of RESULTS’ inaugural First 100 Days Campaign. We’ll have the results of the campaign for you in the coming weeks but with the end of the Campaign comes a new round of group planning. Please schedule time in May for your group to meet and set goals for the rest of 2017. We’ll have new materials to help you next week.

Remember the U.S. Poverty Webinar Change. The U.S. Poverty National Webinar is moving to the second Tuesday of the month at 8:00 pm ET, starting on Tuesday, May 9. The change will last through July; if successful, it could be made permanent this fall). If you have questions, please contact Jos Linn ([email protected]).

Nominate a Grassroots Volunteer to the RESULTS Board. We are now accepting nominations for the RESULTS and RESULTS Educational Fund Grassroots Board. Two seats will be open in July. Nominate someone you think would be a strong voice representing RESULTS volunteers (you can nominate yourself as well) to Jesse Marsden ([email protected]) no later than Sunday, May 28. Read more on the RESULTS Blog.

Join Final New Jim Crow Discussion on Thursday. This week, RESULTS will conclude our virtual book club on The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration In the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander. Please join us. We will cover chapter 6 in this session. It you have not read the book or attended a previous book club session, you are still welcomed to participate. Join us in this important conversation about race, poverty, and mass incarceration. To participate, login at http://fuze.me/34326078 or dial in by phone (201) 479-4595 Meeting ID: 34326078#.

New SNAP Resource. Check out the new SNAP resource – www.thisissnap.org – from our friends at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. It provides information on how SNAP works, who it benefits, and threats to the program. It is a great tool in your advocacy work to protect this critical program.

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Upcoming Events

Go to the RESULTS Events Calendar to see a full list of RESULTS events. Also, find a list of the RESULTS U.S. Poverty staff with contact information on the RESULTS website.

Upcoming Congressional Recesses: House: May 8-12, May 29-June 2. Senate: May 29-June 2.

RESULTS “New Jim Crow” Book Club Webinar, Thursday, April 27 at 8:00 pm ET. Join this conversation around the book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration In the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander (final session). We will cover chapter 6 of the book. To participate, login at http://fuze.me/34326078 or dial in by phone (201) 479-4595 Meeting ID: 34326078#.

RESULTS Introductory Call, Friday, April 28 at 1:00 pm ET. If you want to learn more about RESULTS, register for an Intro Call on the RESULTS website.

New Date and Time! RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Webinar, Tuesday, May 9 at 8:00 pm ET. Participate at http://fuze.me/32255914 or (201) 479-4595, Meeting ID: 32255914#. Listen to previous webinars on our National Webinars page.

RESULTS U.S. Poverty Free Agents Calls, Tuesday, May 16 at 1:00 pm and 8:00 pm ET. To participate, login at http://fuze.me/32256018 or dial by phone at (201) 479-4595, Meeting ID: 32256018#.

RESULTS International Conference, Saturday, July 22 – Tuesday, July 25, 2017. Washington Court Hotel, Washington, DC. Register today!

If you have a question, comment or suggestion for the RESULTS/RESULTS Educational Fund Board, please e-mail them to RESULTS Grassroots Board Member Vanessa Garcia at [email protected]. You can view the most recently published minutes from Board meetings on the RESULTS website, as well as download RESULTS’ most recent Annual Report.

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