Student Advocacy at the State Level

To find you state legislators go to www.congress.org. Once you've determined who your state legislator's are, there are many ways to get involved and advocate for the physical therapy profession. Below, are a few ideas to become an advocate for the challenge. Don't forget to report your advocacy efforts to get credit for your physical therapy program in the challenge!

Write a Letter

This is a great way to draw your legislator's attention to an issue or to get the word out about physical therapy. Plus it's easy -- and you can do it from the comfort of your home!

Meet with Your State Representative or Senator

Meeting with your legislator can be a powerful way to get your message across, as well as to listen to any health care related questions or concerns your legislator may have. It is a great way to build a relationship between your state chapter and the legislator. Please consider contacting your chapter's State Legislative Chair and/or State Government Affairs at advocacy@apta.org for more detailed information prior to your meeting.

Participate in a Campaign

Due to Federal and State law, information about political campaigns will not be found on your legislator's official Web site. If you are looking for campaign information, it may be easiest to use a search engine with search terms including the legislator's name and campaign year. Once you've located the campaign site, you can simply e-mail the campaign coordinator and offer to volunteer. Also, you may be able to subscribe to an e-mail list which will give you updates about campaign events your legislator may be hosting.

Attend a Town Hall Meeting

State legislators often hold town hall meetings in communities within their district to hear from their constituents. Typically, these town halls are not huge gatherings, so your attendance can make a big impression. This is a great opportunity to advocate for issues that are facing the profession or your patients on the local state level. To learn about upcoming town hall meetings, visit your legislator's Web site or call his/her office.

Invite a Legislator to Visit Your School

Having a legislator visit your academic program can be a great way for them to learn more about the profession of physical therapy, the academic preparation involved, and the issues which are facing our profession. Please contact your chapter's State Legislative Chair and/or APTA State Government Affairs at advocacy@apta.org for assistance with planning a visit.

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