U.S. Poverty Weekly Update February 19, 2019
Quote of the Week
“During budget negotiations, I hope our congressional leadership fairly evaluates, considers and supports federal rental assistance to help house the people of Alaska because everyone deserves a home.”
– RESULTS Anchorage volunteer Mariah Seater in a February 11 letter to the editor in the Northern Light
Got Two Minutes? Call about Town Halls during Recess
Congress is on recess all this week, their first break of the year. With the FY2019 budget now complete, attention turns to their agenda for this year and beyond. With them home this week, this is your opportunity to help set the agenda. Numerous members will be having town halls and appearing at public events this week. Contact their offices to ask about events you could attend and ask a question about housing policy.
TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes to look for town halls or public events during this week’s congressional recess. Contact your House and Senate offices to ask about any events your members of Congress may be holding this week. You can also visit their congressional websites and www.townhallproject.com to look for events. Once you find an event to attend, find all the resources you need for town halls and meetings on our lobbying page. In addition, if you need coaching for these events, contact Crickett Nicovich for assistance. Lastly, if you do get to ask a question at an event, please fill out our Lobby Report Form to let us know what you asked and what answer you got.
Got Ten Minutes? Ask for Meetings to Talk about Housing
When was the last time you checked in about lobby meetings this week? Hopefully, you’ve contacted your House and Senate offices already and are waiting for a response. If you have not heard from them in the last week, contact them ASAP to see if you can get a last-minute meeting during this week’s recess. If you cannot get a meeting this week, ask for a meeting during their March or April recesses.
With the shutdown threat over, this is the time to meet with lawmakers to talk about funding for affordable housing. Specifically, we are looking for Congress to raise the budget caps (i.e. sequestration levels) for FY2020 and 2021 (Congress has raised these caps for each fiscal year since 2013) and allocate $4 billion in additional funding for the Housing Choice Voucher program over the next two years. It is estimated that this increase will allow over 300,000 additional households to get Housing Choice Vouchers. By securing this allocation up front, it will be much easier to ensure that money is spent to help these families. Read more in our updated lobby leave-behind sheet on our lobbying page (under “I need lobbying materials”).
TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to set the agenda by following up on requests for face-to-face meetings with your members of Congress during this week’s recess. If you have not requested a meeting yet, use our meeting request (online or Word doc) to request your meeting ASAP. If you cannot get a face-to-face meeting this month, ask for one during the March or April recesses. Find all the resources you need for your meetings on our new lobbying page. If you get a last-minute meeting this week, please contact Crickett Nicovich for coaching (Meredith Dodson is out of the office this week).
Got Twenty Minutes? Get Media about Affordable Housing while Lawmakers are Home
In addition to talking with members of Congress about affordable housing this week, why not also send them a message in the media while they are home? Letters to the editor addressing your members of Congress are a great way to get their attention. They want to know what constituents care about and how better to let them know than in the local paper. This month, we are looking for letters on funding for rental housing assistance and our online letter to the editor action is ready to help you send in yours today.
TAKE ACTION: Take twenty minutes to submit a letter to the editor about funding for affordable housing using the RESULTS housing media alert. Make sure to personalize your letter and mention your members of Congress by name. If you need help, please contact Jos Linn. When you get published, please send the online link or copy of the letter to Jos as well.
Register for the RESULTS Conference! Registration for the RESULTS International Conference (July 13-16 in Washington, DC) is now open. Go to www.resultsconference.org to register today for our biggest event of the year.
REAL Change Summit a Great Success. Last week, 51 REAL Change Fellows and alums gathered in Washington, D.C. for three days of training, learning, organizing and advocacy. They gathered to share successes, address challenges, and strategize for the rest of the year. Fellows learned about the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria, and housing policy. They did a deep dive on organizing, spent time practicing storytelling, and created plans to mobilize our communities this spring. They learned from our Experts on Poverty and were inspired (and infuriated) by their experiences of poverty. After an incredible weekend of learning and preparation, Fellows and alums headed to Capitol Hill on February 9 for over 70 meetings! This REAL Change Class has done incredible work so far, with over 260 lobby meetings, and over 50 media pieces published. We can’t wait to see what they accomplish this spring. If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a REAL Change Fellow, apply for the 2019-20 class today!
Oppose New SNAP Rule. If you have not submitted your public comment opposing the Trump Administration’s proposal to take SNAP benefits from 755,000 childless adults, please go to FRAC’s website to submit your comment today. The deadline is April 2.
Shutdown Averted. Last week, House and Senate negotiators reached an agreement on the FY2019 discretionary budget, which was quickly passed by both chambers and signed by President Trump. In the final budget, housing programs were spared cuts proposed by the president, receiving $12 billion in funding above the president’s request ($1.5 billion over FY2018 funding). This will increase funding for tenant-based rental assistance, public housing, project-based rental assistance, and homeless assistance grants, among other things. For a detailed summary of how various housing programs fared, see this summary from the National Low-Income Housing Coalition.
Send in Your Group Plans. Please submit your 2019 group plan using our online form. Find all our planning materials on the Outreach and Planning page. If you have questions, please contact Jos Linn for assistance.
Learn How to Be a Better Coach. Join RESULTS Regional Coordinator Misty Novitch for a book club discussion on the coaching techniques explored in David Rock’s book Quiet Leadership. The book club will meet the third Thursday of each month at 9:00 pm ET, starting next Thursday, February 21. The first assignment is to read pages 1-35. To join, login at https://results.zoom.us/j/482992263 or join by phone at either (929) 436-2866 or (669) 900-6833, meeting ID 482 992 263. Questions? Contact Lisa Marchal.
Monday, February 18-Friday, February 22: February Congressional Recess. Submit your meeting requests today.
Tuesday, February 19, U.S. Poverty Free Agents Calls, 1:00 pm and 8:00 pm ET. Join at: https://results.zoom.us/j/324294681 or dial by phone at (929) 436-2866 or (669) 900-6833, Meeting ID: 324 294 681.
Thursday, February 21: Quiet Leadership Book Club, 9:00 pm ET. To join, go to https://results.zoom.us/j/482992263. You can also join by phone at (929) 436-2866 or (669) 900-6833, meeting ID 482 992 263.
Tuesday, February 26: Black History Month Discussion, 1:00 pm ET. Join a discussion centered on three short videos: What does my headscarf mean to you?, Place Matters, and The danger of a single story. Join online at: https://results.zoom.us/j/398056270 or dial either (669) 900-6833 or (929) 436-2866, ID:398 056 270.
Thursday, February 28: Black History Month Discussion, 2:00 pm ET. Join a discussion of the book, Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates. Join via online at: https://results.zoom.us/j/398056270 or dial either (669) 900-6833 or (929) 436-2866, ID:398 056 270.
Tuesday, March 5: RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Webinar, 8:00 pm ET. Join at: https://results.zoom.us/j/873308801 or dial (929) 436-2866 or (669) 900-6833, Meeting ID: 873 308 801. Find recordings and slides from previous webinars on the National Webinars page.
Wednesday, March 6: RESULTS Action Network Community of Practice webinar, 8:00pm ET.To join, log in: https://results.zoom.us/j/427674133 or dial in: 669-900-6833, Meeting ID: 427 674 133. You can also join our Facebook and e-mail groups.
Saturday, July 13-Tuesday, July 16, 2019: RESULTS International Conference. Register today at www.resultsconference.org!
Find all events on the RESULTS Events Calendar.
U.S. Poverty Staff time out of the office: Meredith Dodson, February 18-22. Jos Linn, March 21-22.
Learn more about the RESULTS Experts on Poverty.
If you need materials (banners, pens, stickers, or business cards) for your local RESULTS work, fill out our Materials Order Form and we’ll send them to you.
Please fill out the new RESULTS Lobby Report Form after any lobby meeting. In meetings that cover both U.S. and global poverty issues, please fill it out twice.
RESULTS Staff directory