Let’s march right into the State Legislative Session!

January 23rd, 2017|Action of the Week|0 Comments

The state legislative session begins today!

The election is over. The weekend marches are over. But today in Salt Lake and ongoing across Utah — from Logan to Green River and everywhere in between — Action Utah members will march on!

The Women’s March on the Utah Capitol today rings in the first day of the 2017 Utah state legislative session — our big chance as ordinary citizens to influence policies across a range of important issues. So march with us out of D.C., Salt Lake, Park City, St. George, Ogden and Moab and into immediate and ongoing calls to action that make a real difference.

For the next 45 days 104 state representatives will gather on the hill to propose, debate and pass all of our state’s legislation for the year. There are already more than 1,000 bills filed – an unprecedented number – with many more to come on critical issues facing our communities.

Action Utah is working hard to help ordinary citizens influence social, health and environmental policies on the hill this year. But in order to make a real impact we need our Action Utah members to take action!

During the session we will continue to send you weekly calls to action on state and national issues. In addition, we post daily and urgent calls to action on our website and on Facebook and Twitter.

For those of you wanting to get even more involved in the state legislative session, please join one of our Action Teams in social policy, health policy or environmental policy. More on that below! Or please visit our 2017 State Legislative Session page for more information!

On our calendar this week:

 Mon. January 23, 2:00-4:00p – Women’s March on the Utah State Capitol. Join Salt Lake’s local march in support of the Women’s March on the Capitol in Washington D.C.

Tues. January 24th – National Day of Action. Join Indivisible, MoveOn, Working Families and more in visiting your Senators’ offices to oppose dangerous cabinet picks. More info below.

Wed. January 25, 10:00-1:00p – Utah Rivers Council Lobby Day. Learn how to lobby for environmental issues like protecting the Bear River and Utah’s air.

Wed. January 25, 6:30p-7:30p – ACLU’s Legislative Website Workshop. Get to know this great tool and how to make use of it during the state legislative session.

Thurs. January 26, 9:00-10:00a – Utah Students for Clean Air Rally. Student groups and their teachers take to the hill to demand progress on clean air.

Recap: How to engage the State Legislative Session

Thanks to those of you who attended our second community meeting last week! Over 200 people joined us in person at the event in Salt Lake and over 900 people watched live and streaming on Facebook. We are thrilled to see so many people excited to get involved and engaged this legislative session!

Meeting Recap

This winter’s meeting focused on engaging the state legislative session.

  • The ACLU ran a citizen lobbyist training session, which (soon to be posted on the Resources page of our website).
  • Action Utah discussed our mission and organization.
  • Legislators and lobbyists presented a series of bills from Republicans and Democrats that we will be tracking during the session.

Three videos of the meeting will remain on our Facebook page here.

The breakout sessions at the end of our meeting were particularly productive in covering details on highlighted bills, additional bills Action Utah is tracking, and specific actions for Action Utah members to take. Volunteers divided into three Action Teams to tackle bills in the following three issue areas: social policy, health policy and environmental policy.

Action Teams

Action Team captains will be coordinating specific and meaningful actions directly with legislators, lobbyists and issue-specific organizations to send out to all our members across the state during the session. In addition, they will be coordinating Action Teams of volunteers interested in being more involved by taking actions such as:

  • Spreading the word about our calls to action and rallying small groups of people to take specific actions
  • Writing letters to the editor and op-eds
  • Participating in visits to the capitol to meet with legislators and voice support or opposition to their bills

Join one or more Action Team today by contacting us here. We are accepting Action Team members from all over the state to take actions from near and far.

We look forward to making a big impact on the hill this year, and thank you for your support and enthusiasm in taking actions that make a difference!

Weekly Actions

State Issues

1. Prepare for the state legislative session – Do you know who your state representatives are? Influencing policies this session can be fast and easy if you are prepared.

  • Find your representatives’ phone number, email address and home address and add them to your contacts. Every Utahn has one state senator and one representative. Find out who represents you by clicking here.
  • Bookmark Action Utah’s Take Action! page on our website, or follow us daily on Facebook or Twitter for actions you can take during the session.
  • Interested in getting a little more involved? Join one of our Action Teams! We are accepting Action Team members from across the state to take actions from near and far. Read on to find out more.

2. Speak up about Same Day Registration (SDR) – After a 3-year trial that made voting easier for Utahns across the state, Rep. Rebecca Chavez-Houck is sponsoring a bill this session to make Same Day Registration, or the ability to register and vote on the same day, a permanent law in Utah at last. But she needs your help.

  • Have you taken advantage of Same Day Registration? The ACLU wants to hear your stories and share them with the legislature! Please contact Marina Lowe at mlowe@acluutah for more details.

National Issues

1. Take part in a National Day of Action, Tuesday January 24thTrump’s cabinet have gone through committee and will now be voted on by the Senate. If Democrats stand in unity to oppose certain picks, then only 3 Republicans are needed to reject dangerous appointees like Jeff Sessions, Rex Tillerson, Scott Pruitt and Betsy DeVos.

  • Join Indivisible, MoveOn, Wall of Us and tens of thousands of Americans in opposing Trump’s cabinet picks by visiting our Senator’s offices IN PERSON on Tuesday. Tips on visiting your Senator to come tomorrow!
  • If you absolutely can’t show up in person, pick up the phone and call our Senators.

Sen. Mike Lee – Click here for district office addresses in D.C., Salt Lake, Ogden and St. George.
Sen. Orin Hatch – Click here for district office addresses in D.C., Salt Lake, Ogden, St. George, Provo and Cedar City.

2. Tell Congress how Utahns feel about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) – In the face of congressional action to repeal Obamacare without a replacement plan, Alliance for a Better Utah is surveying Utahns about the ACA and collecting personal stories about how the ACA impacts you and which provisions you would like to see preserved in any future plan.

  • Click here to fill out this quick ACA survey. Do you want to see Congress keep important healthcare provisions such as parental policies, no denial based on pre-existing conditions, no age discrimination, subsidies for those who can’t afford to get care, and expansion of Medicare? Be sure to mention these specifics in the comment section at the end.

3. Don’t let the Women’s March end – The Women’s March organizers have vowed to post new calls to action every 10 days for the first 100 days of the new administration. First action: send a Women’s March postcard to your Senators about what matters to you and what you plan to do about it.

  • Click here to print out Women’s March postcards for free.

Thanks for marching forward with us!

We can’t go backward, and so together we will continue to move forward — in Utah and beyond.

Your faithful cheerleaders,
Andrea & Katie
Action Utah Co-Founders

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