Why every special needs parent must get involved in lobbying and advocacy.
I think we’re in this for the long haul.
I wrote this right after the 2016 election, in hopes of inspiring parents to step it up and get more involved. And so many have! That’s fantastic.
But we cannot let up. We cannot get tired. Even when we’re really really tired. We have to keep going.
More than ever, our kids need us to step up our game in lobbying and advocacy and help them. Here are 5 reasons why every special needs parent must make a commitment to doing more lobbying and advocacy in the coming year.
5 reasons why every special needs parent must get involved in lobbying and advocacy.
- Everything our kids do will be under attack. Every service we rely on–from medical assistance to public education, everything is going to be under attack in the coming administration. The GOP controlled Congress has its eyes on all kinds of cuts in education and more. We are going to have to stay informed and stay vigilant about what is happening.
- We are going to be competing with just about every other cause out there for our legislators’ attention. As it is, concerned citizens are crashing phone systems at their legislators’ offices and crashing websites with emails all over the nation. Every cause–education, the environment, animal rights, women’s rights, immigration, health care…you name it, it’s vulnerable. People everywhere are mobilized to act. And we have to be in the mix. If we do not speak up and make our voices heard, our politicians will stay focused on the voices they are hearing.
- Our voice is the only currency we have. Children do not have money. Disabled people, for the most part, do not have money. Our citizen voice is the only currency that our kids have. Our kids will not be donating $10 million to the Trump campaign the way his Education Secretary nominee has. But we do have more than 10 million votes, collectively, so we need to leverage what we have. And that is numbers.
- Because it’s our kids. Our kids do not have a voice. Maybe that is literal. Maybe that is figurative. They are not old enough to vote and are not taxpayers yet. But, they are consumers and citizens and are guaranteed some rights. We need to protect those rights for them. You’d do anything for your kids. So now, it’s time to step up. A few letters, a few phone calls, a few visits….it’s the least we can do.
- If not you, who? If you don’t speak up and try to protect your child’s rights, who do you think will?
By now, you’ve likely seen a pop up inviting you to join my email list. What are you waiting for? Join it and stay informed of what needs to be done.