U.S. Poverty Weekly Update January 16, 2018
U.S. Poverty Campaigns
Weekly Update | January 16, 2018
“I'm calling upon 3rd District Rep. Jim Banks, Sen. Joe Donnelly and Sen. Todd Young to reach across the political aisle and put aside their differences to protect anti-poverty programs that help millions of people every year.”
– RESULTS Indiana volunteer Sarah Leone in a January 6 letter to the editor in the Ft. Wayne Journal Gazette
Got Two Minutes? Tell Congress to Leave Anti-Poverty Programs Alone
Are you upset that Congress passed yet another massive tax cut for the wealthy back in December? If so, good. But think how you’ll feel if they then turn around and cut Medicaid and SNAP to pay for those same tax cuts. Some leaders in Congress want to pursue this path. But last year’s attack on the Affordable Care Act showed that the American people care more about protecting Medicaid than leaders originally thought. Americans are also opposed to cutting food assistance for hungry families. As Congress starts its 2019 budget process, make it loud and clear that using cuts to Medicaid, SNAP, and other basic assistance programs to pay for tax breaks for the rich is unacceptable.
TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes to contact your members of Congress urging them to oppose any effort to cut or restructure Medicaid, SNAP, and other anti-poverty programs in 2018. If leaders run up the deficit to provide tax cuts to the super rich, they may not turn around and demand low-income Americans pay for it. Use our online e-mail alert to send your message today. Or better yet, use our new RESULTS Volunteers Facebook Video as a guide to call their offices and leave this message:
My name is ___________________ and I am a constituent of Sen./Rep. _______________ and a RESULTS volunteer advocate. I want to leave him/her a message saying that I am very concerned about efforts to push deep budget cuts to basic assistance programs like SNAP (formerly Food Stamps), Medicaid, and the Earned Income Tax Credit from low-income Americans to finance recent tax cuts for the rich. Rather than undermining what we already know works, let's focus on strengthening and expanding effective anti-poverty policies to create opportunity and make sure all Americans can make ends meet. I'm counting on Sen./Rep. _______________ to stand up against any measures to take away health and nutrition assistance from struggling Americans. Please communicate your opposition to cuts in health and basic assistance programs to the Budget Committee and party leadership.
Got Ten Minutes? Make Group Planning Your Priority This Month (January Action)
January is group planning month at RESULTS – the month when you articulate the outcomes we’d like to see happen over the next year in your RESULTS advocacy work. Congress is planning their 2018 agenda this month; we must do the same. Setting out your expectations and goals now will go a long way in you repeating and even exceeding the record-breaking work you did in 2017.
We encourage all RESULTS groups and Free Agents to participate in this important process. Free Agents will be planning today on the monthly Free Agents calls (see call details in the Calendar below). For volunteers in groups, we encourage you to set your group planning meeting date now, if you have not done so already. The goal is to complete planning by January 31 and start putting them into action ASAP.
TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to review the group planning materials and to check in with your group members to schedule your group planning meeting in January. The key documents you want to have for your planning meeting are the Individual Planning Form (to set your personal goals for the year), the Group Planning Guide (to walk you through the process quickly and easily), and the Group Planning Summary (to articulate the outcomes you want to see happen (send a copy of this to RESULTS)). You can find all the group planning resources and forms on the Group Resources page of the RESULTS website. Another good resource is the January National Webinar, which focused on our 2018 campaigns and group planning. Once your planning is complete, please send a copy of your Group Planning Summary for to Jos Linn by January 31.
Got Twenty Minutes? Submit Your First Face-to-Face Meeting Requests of the Year
As you work to set goals this month for your RESULTS work in 2018, there is no better way to get started than scheduling face-to-face meetings with your members of Congress. Leaders in Congress will be setting their goals for the year over the next few weeks. With some pushing for cuts to Medicaid and SNAP and this also being an important election year (i.e. they don’t want to anger voters), this is an ideal time to let them know what you want their priorities to be. Meeting with them now is also a good way of building those relationships with them and their staff that is necessary to get things done.
TAKE ACTION: Take twenty minutes to submit your first face-to-face meeting requests of 2018. Use the January Action as a guide to submit requests this month to meet with your representative and both senators. The House will be on recess next week and both the House and Senate will be on recess the week of February 19. If you need additional coaching for your requests, please contact Jos Linn. Once you get a meeting scheduled, please contact Meredith Dodson to set up a lobby prep call to get ready. Finally, please let us know how each meeting goes completing the RESULTS Lobby Report Form afterward.
Trump Administration Permitting New Medicaid Work Requirements. As reported last week, the Trump Administration is granting waivers to a number of states wanting to impose new work requirements on Medicaid recipients. RESULTS opposes these efforts because there is no evidence that threatening the loss of health care will improve chances of people finding a job. In fact, the reverse is true; knowing that health care is secure allows people the opportunity to focus on gaining employment. While this is an important issue, it is not one RESULTS will focus on in our advocacy work simply because these are state-initiated waivers (sadly we do not have the resources to engage to deep state-by-state work). However, we expect to see other efforts in Congress to take health care and food away from struggling Americans though work requirements (also known as "time limits") in SNAP, Medicaid, and other anti-poverty programs – stay tuned for more details and talking points as those threats develop.
2018 Is an Outreach Year and Things Are Getting Off to a Great Start. In our ongoing efforts to expand our reach and impact, last Saturday RESULTS Expert on Poverty Qiana Torregano hosted an Advocacy and Storytelling Training in New Orleans. She was joined by fellow Experts on Poverty Maxine Thomas and Asia Bijan Thompson along with RESULTS Director of US Poverty Campaigns Meredith Dodson. The event was a success and Qiana is continuing her work to support young writers and adults to share their own stories powerfully in their community. On Thursday, Maxine is a featured speaker at Purdue University’s Diversity Awareness Week at a “MLK Jr. Influence on Poverty and Nutrition Education” panel discussion. Also, Asia is hosting a Policy and Storytelling Workshop in Kingston, PA, on February 17. Finally, RESULTS Grassroots Manager for U.S. Poverty Campaigns Jos Linn will be traveling to Iowa later this month for events focusing on children and poverty in Des Moines (Jan. 29) and Iowa City (Jan. 30) (see details below). Be sure to invite friends to attend these events and let us know if you need resources for hosting outreach events in your own community!
Register for the International Conference. Registration for the 2018 RESULTS International Conference is now open. The Conference is July 14-17 in Washington, DC. It promises to be a great experience for all who attend. Register now for the 2018 Conference at www.resultsconference.org.
Upcoming congressional recesses: House: January 22-26; February 19-23; Senate: February 19-23.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday, Monday, January 16. All RESULTS offices closed.
U.S. Poverty Free Agents Calls, Tuesday, January 17 at 1:00pm and 8:00pm ET. Login at http://fuze.me/32256018 or dial in by phone at (201) 479-4595, Meeting ID: 32256018#.
Iowa (Des Moines) Presentation on Poverty and Young Children, Monday, January 29, 2018 at 6:30pm CT. Franklin Avenue Library, 5000 Franklin Ave, Des Moines, IA. More details soon. Contact Jos Linn for more information.
Iowa (Iowa City) Presentation on Poverty and Young Children, Tuesday, January 30, 2018 at 6:30pm CT. St. Mark’s United Methodist Church, 2675 E. Washington Street, Iowa City, IA. More details soon. Contact Jos Linn for more information.
RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Webinar, Tuesday, February 6 at 8:00 pm ET. Participate at http://fuze.me/32255914 or (201) 479-4595, Meeting ID: 32255914#.
Pennsylvania “Join the Fight Against Poverty” Training, Saturday, February 17 at 10:00am ET. Featuring RESULTS Expert on Poverty Asia Bijan Thompson. Al Beech/Wood Side Food Pantry, 190 S Sprague Ave, Kingston, PA. For more information contact [email protected].
If you have a question, comment or suggestion for the RESULTS/RESULTS Educational Fund Board, please e-mail them to RESULTS Grassroots Board Member Steven McGee 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.