Do You Feel Nervous about Calling Your Lawmakers?

Commentary: Do You Feel Nervous about Calling Your Lawmakers?

by Ashley Horne, federal policy analyst

Focus Action is here to make the process as smooth as possible.

Do you feel hesitant or unprepared when Focus on the Family Action asks you to call your lawmakers on a big issue?

You’re not alone. It’s normal to feel nervous the first few times you contact your U.S. representative or senators.

But Focus Action is here to make the process as smooth as possible. We’ve been helping people connect with their elected officials for a long time.

So, here are some tips — The Three Cs — for when you receive an “action alert” in your CitizenLink e-mail or see it on our Web site.

First, Be Concise.

Most of the time, it is more than enough to say something like: “Hi, this is Sally Smith. I’m a constituent and am calling to ask Senator X to vote no on this bill.”

It’s OK if the person answering the phone does not take down your name.

And if you want to comment more on the issue, you can. CitizenLink typically provides a few extra talking points.

Second, Be Confident.

Remember, your representative and senators work for you. Not the other way around. The person answering the phone is there to tally responses from constituents in favor of or opposed to legislation. They are not there to argue with you about the merits of the bill.

But what if that happens? What if you are mistreated, ignored or — even worse — belittled by the staff member who takes your call?

This brings us to the final point: Be Courteous. No matter what happens, always be polite to those who work for your lawmaker. It’s a great witnessing opportunity.

CitizenLink provides feedback forms for you to let us know how your phone call went. And you can always e-mail us your feedback. If need be, we will connect with your lawmaker’s office to encourage his or her staff to communicate more hospitably with constituents.

If we had a final “C” to give you, it would be this: Courage. Thank you for your courage in contacting your lawmakers when you hear from Focus that action is needed to defend family values on Capitol Hill.

If you’ve never contacted your elected officials, give it a try today. If you’d rather e-mail your lawmakers, CitizenLink can help. However you choose to take action, remember the steps: Be Concise. Be Confident. Be Courteous.

TAKE ACTIONFour anti-family nominees to the Justice Department are expected to go before the U.S. Senate soon. Please ask your senators to oppose the nominees. You can read about the nominees and find contact information for your senators in our Action Center.

Focus on the Family Action is calling on Congress and President Barack Obama to prevent taxpayer money from funding the abortion industry. Please sign the petition today.

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