Recipe for Action: Ten Tips for Meeting with Your Legislator.

April 1, 2019

As the fight for reproductive rights moves to the states, GRR! advocates will want to meet with their elected officials to advocate for a particular bill or issue. Remember: Regardless of their party or position on the issues, legislators represent YOU and should welcome meeting with any and all constituents.

Servings: One meeting at a time
Prep Time: Days to weeks – or as long as it takes to be well organized and to craft clear objectives.

  • A pinch of passion and persuasion
  • A pound of preparation & planning
  • A cup of stories and statistics
  • A dash of brief, written materials such as a “one-pager” about your organization and the issue or if going solo, why you are there and why the issue is important to you
  • Unlimited amounts of courage and commitment

Before the meeting:

  1. Contact your legislator via email/phone to set a time to meet in the community or at the capitol. Ask for 30 minutes and expect to get half the amount of time.
  2.  It’s a good idea to include other constituents or representatives of groups also concerned about the same issues, ideally no more than seven.
  3. Know your audience and research the legislator’s bio and voting history.
  4. Designate one person to start the meeting, make introductions and state the meeting’s objectives.
  5. Develop an info sheet that quantifies how the issue impacts lives.

At the meeting:

  • Open with a statement like “We want to know what we can do to be a resource for you.”
  • Make introductions and present your issue clearly using both stories and data.
  • Pivot to getting the legislator to talk about themselves – the more they talk the more you will learn about shared interests and differences.
  • Ask for support. If your issue is already introduced and moving forward, state your position and ask the legislator where they stand.

After the meeting:

Follow-up with a thank you letter or email that thanks them for their time and briefly re-caps the discussion.


Want to know more? Check out these articles