July 29, 2019 Advocacy Alert
Your August Advocacy Charge
Pressure Needed to Move OAA Reauthorization
July 29, 2019
This morning, aging advocates received an urgent call to action from Amy Gotwals, n4a’s Chief, Public Policy and External Affairs. She told the audience of more than 1,200 attending n4a’s 44th Annual Conference and Tradeshow in New Orleans, that their Representatives and Senators must hear from them during the August congressional recess. Her charge: Tell your members of Congress that they must reauthorize the Older Americans Act before it expires on September 30!
“We need to get LOUD! Make it a priority to step up your advocacy this summer. If we don’t ensure that Congress does right by the millions of people served by the OAA, who else will?” urged Gotwals. Watch Amy's full remarks.
As detailed in n4a’s recent Advocacy Alert, your advocacy is especially needed in the Senate where the bill is currently stalled over issues related to the Act’s federal funding formula. n4a does not weigh in with Congress on the details of formula conversations, including those currently taking place in the Senate. Today’s call to action aims to help move the broader reauthorization process overall.
Why Your Advocacy is Needed NOW
While grassroots pressure on your Senators is essential to jump start conversations in that chamber, Members of both the House and Senate need to hear from their constituents about the importance of ensuring that vital OAA programs and services are reauthorized before September 30!
The August recess period is a perfect time to explain to or remind your elected officials about the vital role the OAA serves in enabling older adults to live with maximum health, independence and dignity. Representatives and Senators will be away from Washington until after Labor Day, which means that you will have more opportunities to connect with lawmakers when they are back home in their communities.
Our goal is to get a bipartisan reauthorization bill passed in the House and the Senate. Please join n4a to help move OAA forward this August!
- Contact your Senators and Representatives to let them know that achieving a bipartisan reauthorization is critical this fall! If your Senator sits on the Senate HELP Committee or if your Representative serves on the House Education and Labor Committee, it is especially important that you urge them to support moving OAA reauthorization forward!
- CALL: The Capitol Switchboard (202-224-3121) can connect you to your lawmakers’ offices.
- EMAIL: Find the website information for your House and Senate Members and urge them to support moving OAA reauthorization forward there. To find their websites go to www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm and www.house.gov/representatives.
- If your Representative and/or Senator is not on the key committees, ask them to contact their colleagues who are on the Senate HELP or House Education and Labor Committees, which both have jurisdiction over OAA. Help us show broad support for OAA reauthorization by urging House and Senate offices to call the Committees to ask about the status of OAA reauthorization negotiations.
- Engage your grassroots network to advocate for OAA reauthorization! To get this done, our voices must be loud and numerous! Activate your networks through email, social media and any other advocacy tools to contact Congress and push for OAA reauthorization to be achieved by September 30. Consider engaging your advisory board/committee members, the provider organizations you work with, the older adults and caregivers you work with, and other aging advocates in your community.
Use n4a’s OAA Advocacy Toolkit!
Our toolkit has everything you need to take action, including:
- a sample advocacy alert;
- talking points;
- social media messages and images;
- a one-pager fact sheet about the Act;
- n4a’s Recommendations for OAA Reauthorization; and
- background about the Act, including a timeline of milestones in the OAA’s history.
- a sample letter to the editor
Stay tuned for more updates from n4a as the OAA reauthorization process continues. Thank you for getting LOUD with your members of Congress on the important issue of OAA reauthorization!
If you have questions or concerns about this Advocacy Alert or n4a’s policy positions, please contact Autumn Campbell at firstname.lastname@example.org and Amy Gotwals at email@example.com.