You have the power!
- One letter equals the power of 100 citizens
- One phone call equals the power of 10 citizens
- A Party precinct committee person equals the power of 100 voters
- Some legislators like email, others don’t. Make sure to put your name, full address, phone and email address in each form of correspondence.
Letters, calls, and emails from you, as a voter, mean more to public policy makers because they work for you. Let them know what issues are important to you and how you want them to vote on issues – especially those that represent your particular voting district, whether city, state, or federal. Political action can be taken individually or in partnership with other people and organizations with the same interests as you.
To find out what district you’re in for the Nevada Legislature, City Council, or U.S. Congress, visit Project Vote Smart.
Examples of Political Action
Here are some examples of legislation created through systems change advocacy by people with disabilities and their families:
ADA: The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) is one of the most far-reaching pieces of civil rights legislation and systems change advocacy efforts ever accomplished. It provides guidelines for public accommodations, employment and government buildings and programs. For more information, click on the title at the beginning of this paragraph.
IDEA: The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act guarantees the rights of students with disabilities to get accommodations in schools, have an integrated education and for students and parents to participate in the development of the Individual Education Plan (IEP).
BARRIERS TO EMPLOYMENT: Up until 2002, only 1 in 500 people on Social Security Disability ever left the SSA rolls because of employment. We knew more people than that wanted to work, even though disabled, but feared losing health care. What would happen if their disability got worse and they could no longer work, or needed help securing employment? Over the years, disability advocates got more and more frustrated with the Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare policies and laws that made it difficult for people to return to work. Advocates knowledgeable on employment and Social Security worked together to convince Congress to create sweeping new legislation to remove employment barriers and create new opportunities.
TICKET TO WORK: The Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act of 1999 provided new work incentives to remove barriers to employment for people with disabilities. The Ticket includes the creation of private Employment Networks (ENs) that help individuals receiving federal disability benefits become self-sufficient through employment. It also created community Work Incentive Planning and Assistance (WIPA) programs to counsel beneficiaries on the work incentives, and created the opportunity for states to have Medicaid Buy-In programs that provide health care for workers with disabilities for a small premium, and it lengthened Medicare benefits for people with disabilities who work, and much more.