U.S. Poverty Weekly Update January 6, 2015

January 6, 2015

U.S. Poverty Campaigns

Weekly Update | January 6, 2015

“A goal without a plan is just a wish.”

— Antoine de Saint-Exupery

New and Urgent in This Week's Update

Latest from Washington, DC

Organizational Updates


Requests Face-to-Face Meetings with Your Members of Congress

        Take Action

Got Two Minutes? Prepare for Group Planning on the RESULTS National Conference Call THIS Saturday at 12:30 pm ET

Happy New Year! RESULTS hopes that all of you had a very happy holiday season and that your 2015 is already turning out great. To get your 2015 RESULTS work started off right, our first National Conference Call of 2015 is this Saturday, January 10. To help us kick things off, we are thrilled that Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN-5) will join us briefly at the beginning of the call to remind us how important your advocacy will be this year with the new 114th Congress. After that, like last year, the rest of the call will focus on your 2015 Group Planning. Group planning is the process RESULTS groups and Free Agents go through each January, mapping out their advocacy and outreach goals for the year.

This year, however, your group will have a choice – your group can plan during the call with staff (like last year) or you can end the call early and plan on your own. For groups who want to do their planning on the conference call with RESULTS staff, we will go through the entire Group Plan Summary, giving you time along the way to complete each section. So that you have enough time to complete the form, we will extend Saturday’s call by 15 minutes.

For groups who wish to do planning at their own pace on Saturday, you will start the call as normal and then staff will signal you during the call when you can sign off to start your own planning. By giving groups both options, they can tailor their planning to the needs of their group. If you have questions about group planning, please contact Jos Linn ([email protected]).

TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes to remind your local RESULTS group about the RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Conference call this Saturday, January 10 at 12:30 pm ET. Coordinate with your group where you will meet for the call. To join the call, dial (888) 409-6709 and once connected to the operator, ask for the RESULTS National Conference Call. Plan to call in no later than 12:27 pm ET to give time to the operator to connect you with the call.

Before Saturday, please do the following:

  1. Have each group member complete the 2015 Individual Planning Form (Word format or PDF format) and bring it to the call. See more below.
  2. Have the group leader or group planning facilitator read through the Group Planning Guide (Word format or PDF format). See more below.
  3. Print off the Group Plan Summary (Word format or PDF format) and bring it on Saturday.

If you're not able to participate in the call this weekend with your group, please send your completed Individual Planning Form to your group leader before the call. If your group cannot meet this weekend to plan, please schedule a meeting in January to complete your group plan.

For more details about 2015 Group Planning, please see the January Action. You can find all the 2015 Group Planning resources on our Group Resources page of the RESULTS website. We will have the January 2015 Conference Call Overview slides available later this week. You will find them on the RESULTS Home Page in the “Take Action” box in the top right-hand corner.

Got Ten Minutes? Complete Your 2015 Individual Planning Form before Saturday’s Group Planning Session (January Action)

As mentioned above, we’ll be focusing on 2015 Group Planning on this Saturday’s RESULTS National Conference Call. RESULTS groups do group planning every January to set goals for the year; it is an important process that has helped RESULTS create our legislative, outreach, and media successes over the years. The first step in this process is for you to decide what you individually want to accomplish in 2015. You decide what you want to do this year and then bring that to your group on Saturday. This is a very important step because your individual goals help shape your group’s goals. Be sure to include everything you want to do – your goals may be unique and something others in your group did not include.

RESULTS makes this easy with our one-page Individual Planning Form. Simply download the form, fill it out, and bring it to the call on Saturday. It’s that simple.

TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to download and complete your 2015 Individual Planning Form (also in PDF format). This one-page lets you reflect on your successes from this year, your hopes for the coming year, and concrete actions you’d like to see taken in 2015. Each group member should fill out this form and bring it to the National Conference Call this Saturday at 12:30 pm ET. If you cannot be on the call this Saturday with your group, please send your completed Individual Planning Form to your group leader before Saturday so he/she can include your goals in your group’s plan. Note: for U.S. Poverty Free Agents, we’ll also do group planning on our calls later this month.

The January Action has tips to help you with group planning this month and you can find all the 2015 Group Planning resources on our Group Resources page. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Jos Linn ([email protected]) for help.

Got Twenty Minutes? Read Through the Group Planning Guide and Gather Your Group Planning Materials (January Action)

You can probably detect a recurring theme here. We are clearly wanting you and your group to do your 2015 Group Planning this weekend. Group planning has a long tradition in RESULTS, having been part of our advocacy work for many years. As the old adage goes, “a goal without a plan is just a wish.” Group planning helps you and your fellow advocates document the goals you want to achieve this year and articulate how you will get there. It is one of the primary reasons RESULTS volunteers have been successful over the years in influencing legislation and strengthening democracy.

TAKE ACTION: We will use the January U.S. Poverty National Conference Call to help you do your Group Planning this weekend. Take twenty minutes to get ready for 2015 Group Planning on the RESULTS National Conference Call this Saturday at 12:30 pm ET.

  1. Have your group leader or group planning facilitator read through the Group Planning Guide (Word format or PDF format). If you’re new to group planning or you want ideas on how to make your planning process fun and inspiring, this two-page guide has fun and inspiring ideas you can use.
  2. Download the 2015 Group Plan Summary (Word format or PDF format) and have a copy at your planning meeting. You will complete this form during your meeting and send a copy to Jos Linn ([email protected]). RESULTS staff and Regional Coordinators will work with you throughout the year to help you achieve your goals.
  3. Bring a copy of your 2014 Group Plan to the meeting. Have a copy of last year’s plan as you will want to refer to it during planning on Saturday. If you cannot find a copy of your 2014 plan, contact Jos Linn ([email protected]) for help.

Learn More Online!

Read more about our U.S. Poverty work in the full version of today’s RESULTS U.S. Poverty Weekly Update on the RESULTS website, including:

Use New Wealth Gap Data in Face-to-Face Meetings with Your Members of Congress (January Action)

The New Year brings with it renewed energy and enthusiasm, not only for the happenings in our daily lives, but also bigger endeavors like hastening the end of poverty. Start the year off right by channeling some of your energy into one of our most important actions – setting up face-to-face meetings with members of Congress. Face-to-face meetings are essential in building the relationships with members of Congress needed to end poverty. With the new Congress and new leadership in the Senate, these meetings take on even greater importance.

Wealth Inequality by RaceNew data from the Federal Reserve and Pew Research Center shows how important your advocacy is in educating members of Congress about the wealth gap in America. The data shows that the wealth gap in America continues to grow, especially along racial lines. For example, in 2013, median wealth for white households was 13 times greater than the median wealth of African-American households; it 2010, it was already a staggering eight times greater.

In addition, friend of RESULTS Ray Boshara of the Federal Reserve penned an op-ed last week highlighting that one in three American-Americans and one in four Latinos have less than $1,000 in wealth compared to one in nine whites, and one in 100 African-Americans or Latinos are likely to have more than $1 million in assets, compared to one in eight whites.

These figures remind us why it is essential that you meet with members of Congress – old and new – early this year. With budget battle lines already being drawn, you want to remind them that enacting policies that exacerbate the wealth gap and poverty in America are unacceptable. Congress is elected to represent all Americans; not just those at the top of the economic ladder.

TAKE ACTION: Call or e-mail the schedulers for your members of Congress to set up face-to-face meetings for upcoming recesses. Be sure to put in requests for all the representatives your group covers and both senators in your state. The January Action has information to help with your requests and you can use our updated online request letter to e-mail or fax your request in today. You can find scheduler names and contact information on the Elected Officials page of the RESULTS website. If you need help or guidance with your requests, please contact Jos Linn ([email protected]) for assistance.

Once you confirm a lobby meeting, please contact Meredith Dodson ([email protected]) for help in preparing for your meeting.

Join or Invite Others to Our First RESULTS Intro Call of 2015

Many of us make New Year's resolutions, but don't have a plan to make them happen. If one of your resolutions is to make a difference, we've got just the solution for you: learn for yourself how you can participate with RESULTS grassroots advocacy efforts to end poverty in the U.S. and around the world, or invite others to join you. We urge you to join our next RESULTS Introductory Call. This 30-45 minute call will provide an introduction to RESULTS and our work to create the political to end poverty, and show how to get involved. And why not resolve to share the experience by inviting a friend or colleague to join an Intro Call too.  The next RESULTS Introductory Call is Wednesday, January 14, at 9:00 pm ET. Simply go to www.tinyurl.com/RESULTSMeetandGreet/ to register for the call. If you cannot make that call, click on the link and register for one of these bi-monthly calls that fits your schedule.

In 2015, RESULTS staff are focused on building our grassroots network in UT, OR, WI (especially Rep. Paul Ryan’s district), NV, AL, MS, which are strategic states for our campaign work. If you know anyone in those states, please do urge them to learn more about RESULTS on an Introductory Call. Overall, RESULTS staff started and trained five new RESULTS groups in 2014, which cover four new states. There are three more groups that started last year and are in training now (Louisville KY, Birmingham AL, and Ypsilanti, MI). As a whole we cover 30 states, with an aggressive goal to have RESULTS U.S. Poverty activists in 40 states by the end of the year.

There are some exciting outreach events and opportunities coming up for folks in the South who are new to, or recently involved in RESULTS. There is a group webinar tentatively set for January 17 for those in the Atlanta, GA area. We'll take a deeper dive into our U.S. Poverty issues, get an overview of the legislative makeup in Georgia, and plan for a larger outreach event at the end of the month. In late February (date and location TBD), we will be holding a joint outreach event with MomsRising in the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area of North Carolina. This will be a fun, interactive event where we'll be screening some great short films on poverty and offering training on how the Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit affect working families, and how you can help support them.  If you would like to participate in either events, or need more information, please contact Kristy Martino, U.S. Poverty Grassroots Organizer, at [email protected] or (603) 531-7486.

If you have any questions or suggestions about RESULTS and our outreach efforts, please feel free to contact Meredith Dodson at [email protected]. Thank you for your time and your commitment to make the world a better place.


Join Training Call for Nicholas Kristof Outreach Event. On February 14 at 2:00 pm ET, RESULTS is hosting a national outreach event with New York Times columnist and best-selling author Nicholas Kristof. We want you to use this opportunity to grow and strengthen your local RESULTS groups. To help you, RESUTLTS is hosting trainings this month on “Outreach Basics to Make the Most of RESULTS National Outreach Event with Nick Kristof.” Come to one of these special trainings to learn about who to reach out to in your community about this event, how to get people into the room, and strategies to use this event to grow your group. The trainings will be Tuesday, January 13 at 9:00 pm ET and Wednesday, January 21 at 1:00 pm ET. To join this online meeting, go to http://fuze.me/27334294. To join by phone, dial (201) 479-4595 and enter meeting ID 27334294.

Learn How to Effectively Research Your Members of Congress. As you work to set up face-to-face meetings this month, it is always important to do research on your members of Congress before you meet with them. This is especially true this year with so many new members of Congress being sworn into office. For years, RESULTS volunteer Allison Gallaher has been leading a fun and effective online training on researching your members of Congress. She shows you the tricks of the trade in getting helpful information on the background, voting record, and positions on the issues for each of your members of Congress. Allison will be repeating her Researching Your Members of Congress training this month on Wednesday, January 14 at 9:00 pm ET and again on Thursday, January 15 at 1:00 pm ET. This training is a great resource so please plan to attend. To join online, go to http://fuze.me/27200038. To join by phone, dial (201) 479-4595, meeting ID 27200038.

Contact Grassroots Board Members with Your Questions. If you have questions or suggestions for the RESULTS Board, please contact Grassroots Board Member Lydia Pendley at [email protected].

RESULTS Activity Calendar

(See a complete calendar on the RESULTS website)

Upcoming Congressional Recesses: House: January 15-19, February 14-23; Senate: February 14-22. Request face-to-face meetings.

Saturday, January 10: RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Conference Call, 12:30 pm ET. (888) 409-6709. Listen to previous conference calls online.

Tuesday, January 13: Outreach Basics to Make the Most of RESULTS National Outreach Event with Nick Kristof, 9:00 pm ET. Join at: http://fuze.me/27334294. To join by phone: (201) 479-4595, meeting ID 27334294.

Wednesday, January 14: Researching Your Members of Congress online training, 9:00 pm ET. To join online, go to http://fuze.me/27200038. To join by phone, dial (201) 479-4595, meeting ID 27200038.

Wednesday, January 14: RESULTS Introductory Call, 9:00 pm ET. Register for the Intro Call at: https://results.org/take_action/become_a_results_activist/#Introductory%20Call.

Thursday, January 15: Researching Your Members of Congress online training, 1:00 pm ET. To join online, go to http://fuze.me/27200038. To join by phone, dial (201) 479-4595, meeting ID 27200038.

Wednesday, January 21: Outreach Basics to Make the Most of RESULTS National Outreach Event with Nick Kristof, 1:00 pm ET. Join at: http://fuze.me/27334294. To join by phone: (201) 479-4595, meeting ID 27334294.

Saturday, July 18 – Tuesday, July 21, 2015: RESULTS International Conference, Washington Court Hotel, Washington, DC. Registration opening soon!

RESULTS Contact Information

Main Office: (p) (202) 783-7100, (f) (202) 466-1397, 1101 15th St NW, Suite 1200, Washington, DC 20005. If mailing a donation to our DC office, please address the envelope to the attention of Cynthia Stancil.

RESULTS U.S. Poverty Legislative and Grassroots Support Staff:

The RESULTS U.S. Poverty Update is sent out every Tuesday via email to RESULTS volunteers and allies all over the country. The purpose of these updates is to inform and activate RESULTS activists to take action on our U.S. poverty campaigns.

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