Tuesday, September 21, 2021

How To Get Involved

Please get involved! Here’s how:

Face-to-face visits with legislators and staff are the most influential method of advocacy; however, email or phone calls work as well. Please see below for tips and tricks to talking with your legislator. You will find that state and county legislators are much more accessible and approachable than U.S. representatives and senators. South Dakota state legislators do not have staff during the year and only have access to a part-time intern during session; therefore, your messages should be short, concise and to the point. As local representatives, they want to hear from their constituents.

Preparation Tips

  • Research the issue.
  • Visit our Bill Tracker for SDAHO’s position and a quick link to the bill.
  • Create a personal message that includes your relevant work, professional background, expertise and experiences. Always address the problem in terms of how it impacts healthcare in your community.

Face-to-Face Contact

  • Give your name, home location and organization (in the legislator’s district).
  • State the reason for your visit or contact.
  • State your position on the issue.
  • Tell your story; use supporting data from your facility relevant to the issue.
  • State your ask and request their support or action.
  • Thank them for their time.
  • If you plan on visiting the capitol during the legislative session, let SDAHO know how we can assist you.

Writing Letters, Email Messages

  • Be concise and limit the message to one issue.
  • The letter or message should include your name, organization and contact information.
  • State your position on the issue.
  • Tell your story; use supporting data from your facility relevant to the issue.
  • State your ask and request their support or action.
  • Personalize your message; legislators get many form letters and you want yours to stand out.
Helpful Links:

South Dakota State Legislature
South Dakota Legislature Legislative Research Council
State of South Dakota
South Dakota Department of Health
South Dakota Department of Human Services
South Dakota Department of Social Services
South Dakota Foundation for Medical Care

X