NEW YORK NURSE: March 2010
Ask the experts
Becoming an active legislative advocate
Q.: As an RN in New York State, how can I make a difference in how healthcare reform is adequately addressed and funded by local, state and national representatives?
A.: There are many ways that an RN can advocate for healthcare reform and become an active participant in the legislative sector:
- Visit NYSNA’s Governmental Affairs home page online to review the current legislative agenda and log in to find out who your current legislators are; track how they voted on NYSNA priority issues; and let them know how you feel. Links are provided for ease of access to areas for immediate and long term action.
- Join NYSNA at Lobby Day. Lobby Day is an annual opportunity for members, students and other individuals to meet and speak with representatives on issues specific to NYSNA, as well as areas that require ongoing improvement efforts. The day affords individuals the chance to increase our representatives’ awareness and understanding of how their constituents feel about current legislative agendas. The 2010 Lobby Day is April 20.
- NYSNA is also involved with numerous coalitions around the state which work to ensure the public’s receipt of quality and affordable health care at all stages of life. You can find out more about these coalitions on our website.
- Become a Legislative District Coordinator (LDC). LDCs are the eyes and ears of nursing in their legislative districts. They establish contact and build relationships with their legislators through phone calls, letter writing and office visits. They serve as a resource for legislators and put a personal face on issues important to nurses and their patients. Contact Governmental Affairs to learn more about becoming an LDC.
And remember, the simplest way to effect change and make your voice heard is to vote.
This is a sample of the questions NYSNA’s experts answer each day. The advice given is specific for the situation described and may not be applicable generally. If you have questions about your own work setting, it is recommended that you contact your NYSNA Nursing Representative or the Education, Practice, and Research Program, 11 Cornell Road, Latham, New York 12110-1499 or call 800.724.NYRN, ext. 282.