Summer Activism Idea: Hold Your Public Officials Accountable

The first step in holding your state and local officials accountable is to find a piece of legislation you can use as a litmus test.  If you’re on campus over the summer, try to pick an issue you think your fellow students would get behind.  Whether it’s a bill about taxes, guns, or marijuana, find out how your representative voted, how the rest of the legslature voted on it, and other similar bills that were voted on around the same time.  

Did your rep vote against liberty? Go after them.  If they voted in favor, find another bill or go after someone that did vote against you.

You should also try to find any public statements your legislators made about the issue the legislation has to do with:  Maybe they signed a pledge or made a comittment that they want back on?

Once you’ve found your issue and legislation, you can put together a flier that highlights your target’s position on your issue.

Remember that the less text on a flier the better, and any text you do have should be big enough to be easily readable in less than 10 seconds.  You can use the back of the flier for more detailed info if you like, but the front should be big, bold, and simple.

Once you have your fliers, print some off and then start handing them out.  You should also have a sign-up sheet for your YAL chapter in case people want to join you in raising awareness of the issue.

When election day gets closer, you can use the information and data you gathered to bring your issue to the forefront when everyone is paying attention.  You will find your representative cares a lot more about your issue all of the sudden!

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