U.S. Poverty Weekly Update May 27, 2014

The halls of our Capitol are awash with assistance for wealthy individuals and corporations. It is now time that we – you and I – insist on steps being taken to lessen the pain of poverty.

— RESULTS Des Moines volunteers Ivan and Marian Lyddon in a May 27 letter to the editor in the Des Moines Register

New and Urgent in This Week's Update (Two-Ten-Twenty Actions)

Latest from Washington, DC

Organizational Updates


Got Two Minutes? Send in Your Letter to the Editor Today (May Action)

Have you sent in your letter to the editor about tax credits for working families? Take a few minutes to send your letter in today. You’ll feel a lot better for it. Senators and some House members are on recess this week and next. What better way to welcome them home than to have them open up the newspaper and see their names in print telling them protect working families by making critical improvements to the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC) permanent.

TAKE ACTION: Take two minutes to send a letter to the editor to your local newspaper urging Congress to get its priorities straight. Urge members by name to oppose $300 billion in new tax cuts for corporations and instead do what they should have done years ago – make the 2009 EITC and CTC improvements permanent. The May Action has talking points and background information to help you. Be sure to make your letter “local” by using state EITC and CTC data from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. If you don’t have much time to draft a letter, use the RESULTS letter to the editor online action.


Got Ten Minutes? RESULTS Continues to Grow – Here’s Where You Can Help

In addition to making sure Congress focuses on the right priorities this month, RESULTS continues to work on expanding our reach and impact around the country. RESULTS has a goal of starting 10 new U.S. Poverty groups in 2014. We’ve officially started one new group (West Los Angeles) but seven more will complete “new group training” in the next few months: Iowa City, IA, Gig Harbor, WA, Spokane, WA, Eagle Butte, SD, Burlington, VT, Indianapolis, IN, and Seacoast (southern NH and ME). We are also working on starting new groups or adding RESULTS Free Agents in Lexington, KZ, Louisville, KY, Evansville IN, Detroit, MI, Stamford, CT, Portland ME, Salt Lake City, UT, and various areas in the South. Unfortunately, we have also lost two U.S. Poverty groups this year (Creston, IA and Kansas City, MO).

To continue in our efforts, RESULTS Organizer Kristy Martino will be on the road this week and could use your help connecting with new people. Please contact her at [email protected] if you know people in these areas:

  • Tuesday-Thursday, May 27-29: Kristy will be in Atlanta, GA and Berry College (Mt. Berry, GA) for the Bonner Summer Leadership Institute (RESULTS Global Organizer Katy Windschill will also be there)
  • Friday, May 30: Kristy will be in Birmingham, AL
  • Saturday, May 31: Kristy will be in Jackson, MS
  • Sunday, June 1: Kristy will be in Little Rock, AR

Also, RESULTS Organizer Myrdin Thompson will be in Arizona this week (Phoenix and Tucson) and will have some time to meet with potential advocates. If you know people in Arizona, please contact Myrdin at [email protected].

TAKE ACTION: Take ten minutes to connect people you know with RESULTS staff to help us reach our goal of starting 10 new RESULTS U.S. Poverty groups this year. Here are the staff persons to contact about connecting us with people you know:

In addition to connecting people to staff, you could also invite someone you know to learn more about RESULTS on one of our RESULTS Introductory Calls. These 30-45 minute calls provide a good overview of RESULTS and how you and others can get involved. The next RESULTS Intro Call is this Friday, May 30 at 1:00 pm ET. To register for this or another upcoming Intro Call, go to: http://www.results.org/take_action/become_a_results_activist/.


Got Twenty Minutes? Make Lobby Day the Best It Can Be

With less than four weeks to go before the start of the RESULTS International Conference, it’s time to make sure you have a rewarding and powerful Lobby Day on June 24. As noted last week, Lobby Day is the most important part of the conference. It’s when you take all the training and experience you’ve gained before and during the conference and use it to push members of Congress into making poverty in America part of the national agenda.

RESULTS is committed to making sure you have the best Lobby Day you can (this commitment also applies to meetings in your home districts). Here is what we ask you to do before you come to DC to get ready for Lobby Day:

  1. Contact Meredith Dodson to set up a lobby prep call. Meredith will give you and others from your state coming to the conference personalized coaching on your members of Congress, what issues we will focus on at the conference, and what aides to include in your meetings. This will help you tremendously as your prepare for your lobby meetings. We hope to get many of these calls done in the next week and we urge you to include everyone from your state coming to DC to lobby on U.S. poverty issues, if at all possible. Please contact Meredith today to set up your prep call: [email protected], (202) 783-7100, x. 116.
  2. Make appointments with your members of Congress. Please contact your House and Senate schedulers (names can be found on our Elected Officials page) so you can get on their schedule as soon as possible. The earlier you make you requests, the better chance of getting face-to-face meetings with your members of Congress. Use our downloadable meeting request letter or our online version to make your requests. If you have a lobby prep call with Meredith in the next week, wait until after the prep call to schedule your meeting.
  3. Enter your meetings in the Lobby Meeting Form. Once you have your lobby meetings scheduled, please take a few minutes to enter the details of each meeting into our RESULTS Conference Lobby Meeting Form. This helps us keep track of all the meetings taking place at the conference so we can better support you.
  4. Read the RESULTS U.S. Poverty Legislative Handbook. The legislative handbook has background information on all of our 2014 U.S. Poverty Campaigns and is a valuable resource in preparation for the conference. We strongly recommend you download and read it before you come to DC (and bring a hard or digital copy with you) as you won’t have a lot of time to read it when you’re there. The handbook will be available later this week on the RESULTS International Conference page.

TAKE ACTION: Take twenty minutes to get ready for a powerful Lobby Day at the RESULTS International Conference. Set up your lobby prep call with Meredith, make requests for Lobby Day meetings on Capitol Hill, enter your meetings into our RESULTS Conference Lobby Meeting Form, and read the U.S. Poverty Legislative Handbook. Doing these things now will ensure you have a fun, effective, and meaningful experience in DC.

If you haven’t registered for the Conference yet, it’s not too late. We want you there! But do it this week. Our standard registration rate of $240 only lasts until June 2. Register TODAY and join us in DC – and don’t forget to reserve your room at DoubleTree Crystal City!


Set Up Meetings and Attend Town Halls during Congressional Recesses

The Senate is on recess this week and the House will be on recess next week. Use this time to meet with your members of Congress to talk about protecting the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and Child Tax Credit (CTC), building support for the Financial Security Credit, and/or protecting key investments in early childhood development through Head Start, Early Head Start, and Child Care. For those of you not attending the RESULTS International Conference, this may be your only chance to meet with them before July. Contact your House and Senate schedulers now to see if you can get a meeting while they’re home. Also ask about town halls and public appearances in your area.

TAKE ACTION: Contact schedulers today (find names on our Elected Officials page) to set up meetings with representatives and senators during the next two weeks. Use our downloadable meeting request letter or our online version to make your requests. Also, please ask the scheduler about any public events or town halls your members of Congress may be holding during the recess and plan to attend to ask a question. Use our Sample Town Hall Questions for these events.

Also, just as with meetings in DC, Meredith Dodson is available to help you prepare for your lobby meetings back home. When you get a meeting set up or plan to attend a town hall, please contact Meredith ([email protected]) to get personalized coaching for your individual members of Congress. Also remember to take a copy of our Economic Mobility and Early Childhood lobby request sheets to give to your members of Congress.


Invite a Friends to Join the RESULTS Intro Call on Friday

If you know someone who might enjoy getting involved in our work, invite them to our next RESULTS Introductory Call. These 30-45 minute calls provide a good overview of RESULTS and how you and others can get involved. They are a great tool in helping us reach our goal of netting ten new U.S. Poverty groups in 2014. Please take a few minutes and invite someone you know to sign up for an Intro Call. The next RESULTS Intro Call is this Friday, May 30 at 1:00 pm ET. To register for this or another upcoming Intro Call, go to: http://www.results.org/take_action/become_a_results_activist/.


Quick News

Senate Committee Approves Potatoes in WIC Menu. Thank you to everyone who called your members of Congress opposing congressional efforts to include white potatoes in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC). Last week at the behest of the potato lobby, the Senate Appropriations Committee did approve an amendment that allows white potatoes to be included in the WIC menu. However, the amendment also gives the Obama Administration the power to take potatoes off the menu if a mandated nutrition study recommends so. For more information on this issue, see this blog post from our friends at Bread for the World.

For updates on all our U.S. Poverty Campaigns, see our U.S. Poverty Campaigns Summary page on the RESULTS website.


Fundraising Update – Thank you, Cindy Levin

This week, RESULTS Grassroots Development Associate Cindy Changyit Levin will be leaving RESULTS staff. Cindy has been an invaluable resource and inspiration for our fundraising efforts the last few years. She has worked tirelessly to find new and creative ways to engage and support RESULTS volunteers in doing the essential work of raising money for our anti-poverty efforts. Anyone who has worked with Cindy knows that she brightens any room with her presence and inspires you to face challenges head on and succeed when you didn’t think you could. Her last day will be May 29. She will be missed.

Fortunately, she is not going far. Cindy came to RESULTS as a volunteer and continues to demonstrate what a wonderful advocate for the end of poverty she is. Thankfully, Cindy will continue to be a RESULTS volunteers in the St. Louis area, co-leading the new Global group started there. She will also continue to fundraise for RESULTS and will of course be in attendance at the RESULTS International Conference in DC next month (with her daughter)! You can follow Cindy’s adventures at her Anti-Poverty Mom blog.

Thank you, Cindy. You have been a great asset to RESULTS and we look forward to working with you going forward in creating a world free of poverty.

After Thursday, you can direct your fundraising questions to Jen DeFranco at [email protected]. Also, if you or someone you know is interested in doing fundraising support for RESULTS, you can see more details about the open position here.


Announcements

Nominate Grassroots Volunteer for RESULTS Board. Grassroots Board Members play a vital role in the RESULTS family, representing our volunteer network on the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of the Board of RESULTS and REF. We are seeking nominations for two Grassroots Board Member positions which will be open this fall. Candidates can be nominated by others or can nominate themselves. The deadline to nominate someone is Sunday, June 15. Please e-mail your nomination to [email protected] or call 202-783-4800 x152.

Give Feedback to Grassroots Board Members. The four RESULTS Grassroots Board Members (Heide Craig, Lydia Pendley, Ginnie Vogts, and Beth Wilson) would like to hear from you if you have questions or ideas about RESULTS and our work. Send your questions or suggestions to Heide at: [email protected].


RESULTS Activity Calendar

(See a complete calendar on the RESULTS website)

Upcoming Congressional Recesses: Senate: May 26-30; House, June 2-6. Request face-to-face meetings.

Friday May 30: RESULTS Introductory Call, 1:00pm CT. Register for this or another Intro Call at: http://www.results.org/take_action/become_a_results_activist/.

Monday, June 2: Last day to register for the RESULTS International Conference at the standard $240 registration rate. The rate goes to $315 on June 3.

Saturday, June 14: RESULTS U.S. Poverty National Conference Call, 12:30 pm ET. Listen to previous conference calls online.

Tuesday, June 17: RESULTS Media Support Call, 8:00 pm ET. (712) 775-7399, passcode 954747#.

Tuesday, June 17: RESULTS U.S. Poverty Free Agents Calls, 1:00 pm ET and 9:00 pm ET. (443) 453-0034, passcode 703096.

Saturday, June 21 - Tuesday, June 24: RESULTS International Conference, Washington, DC. REGISTER TODAY!


RESULTS Contact Information

Main Office: (p) (202) 783-7100, (f) (202) 466-1397, 1101 15th St NW, Suite 1200, Washington, DC 20005. If mailing a donation to our DC office, please address the envelope to the attention of Cynthia Stancil.

RESULTS U.S. Poverty Legislative and Grassroots Support Staff:

The RESULTS U.S. Poverty Update is sent out every Tuesday via email to RESULTS volunteers and allies all over the country. The purpose of these updates is to inform and activate RESULTS activists to take action on our U.S. poverty campaigns.