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5 Easy Ways To Advocate for OT this August

Fri, August 28, 2015 10:37 AM | Anonymous

Click here for the article. 
There are many ways you can be an advocate for the profession of occupational therapy and there is no better time to do this than during a Congressional recess when the Members of Congress are back at home.
Here are five easy ways you can shape the future of the profession by letting your elected representatives know about the issues that affect the profession of occupational therapy and the people we serve:
1. Write or Call Your Members of Congress: Something you can do at any time of the year is to write or call your Members of Congress and share your views on legislative issues important to the profession. You can go to AOTA’s Legislative Action Center to contact you member’s office directly, monitor current legislation, and identify your Members of Congress. Template letters are available, or, for a more personal approach, you can craft your own letter that clearly explains the issue to your legislator and what actions you would like him or her to take. 
2. Attend Town Hall or Other Meetings with Your Members of Congress: During Congressional recesses, your Senators and Representative often schedule local meetings, often referred to as Town Hall Meetings. To find out about scheduled meetings, call the office of your U.S. Senators and Representative and ask to be informed of town meetings or meetings on health care. Also, you can watch the newspapers for announcements. Most of all -- Attend and speak out! Shake hands and mention your concerns and your profession. The more they hear the words occupational therapy, the more they remember it when it comes time to vote on bills.
3. Invite Your U.S. Representative and Senators to Your Workplace, Educational Institution, or another Site to See OT in Action: Of all the activities, this one makes the most lasting impression on your Members of Congress. For them to see firsthand what you do and how you help so many of their constituents, will mark your profession indelibly on their minds. This is your opportunity to shine! It is your opportunity to demonstrate how important OT is to the clients you serve - their constituents. Don’t know where to start?  Here are some helpful guidelines.
4. Make a Donation to AOTPAC:  If face-to-face advocacy is not your passion, but you still care deeply about the welfare of your profession, you can contribute to the American Occupational Therapy Political Action Committee (AOTPAC).The purpose of AOTPAC is to further the legislative aims of AOTA by using funds to support federal public officials (U.S. Senate or U.S. House of Representatives) who support or advocate for the profession of occupational therapy by introducing or supporting AOTA-drafted bills. Supportive legislators may also act by raising awareness about issues affecting occupational therapy by asking questions during Committee hearings and making statements for the record.
5. Register for Hill Day: If you are interested in being a face-to-face advocate, but are intimidated, or don’t know where to start, join us for Capitol Hill Day on September 28, 2015. AOTA will make all of your Congressional appointments and prepare you for the day.  All you need to do is register. Registration is free!  Advocate for the profession right where all of the decisions are made; learn about AOTA’s top advocacy priorities right in the Capitol Visitors Center.

District of Columbia Occupational Therapy Association | Washington, DC | |@districtOT |

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