May 10, 2019 — Some great suggestions on how to prepare for the May 14th vaccine rights rally & lobby day. This was posted on Facebook: take what works for you and leave the rest:
(For all details about Abany, NY rally, go here:
PREPARING FOR RALLY DAY
This is an all day event. Show up at 9 to lobby, 11 for the rally, and continue lobbying afterwards until 5.
LEAVING THE HOUSE: Please make sure to give yourself enough time to beat any traffic AND have time to find parking. There is ample parking to be found in the general area. All within walking distance of the legislative office building. Please see attached parking info image and this map as well: https://its.ny.gov/sites/default/files/documents/empire-state-plaza-visitor-parking-map.pdf
BRING FOOD AND WATER: When you think you’ve brought enough, bring some more snacks. Bring a tote bag with you. If you have kids, bring a stroller and carrier. Put everything into the stroller that you will need, and plenty of entertainment for your kids. Plan to not see your car or go back to it until the end of the day. I have eaten my lunch standing up in the hallways, while walking even. There is a cafe (with the most delicious soups and AFFORDABLE food) in the basement of the building, but plan to be on your feet all day lobbying from office to office. Chances are you may not have time for a sit down lunch.
WEAR COMFORTABLE SHOES & CLOTHING: You will be on your feet all day long. If you want to dress your outfit up a bit for a little while, at least have flats in your bag to change into. The legislative office building gets HOT. Wear layers.
BRING LETTERS WITH YOU: Have at least 20 letters (or as many as you can bring) with you, 10 for assembly members, 10 for senators. There are 150 assembly members and 63 senators. So if you don’t think 20 letters is enough, print more. You can address them to “Dear Assembly member” and “Dear Senator”. These letters should state your opposition to s2994/a2371 and why. Look up beforehand what office number they have so you don’t have to go searching for them that day.
HOW TO LOBBY: Chances are very high that you will not be alone when walking from office to office. Team up with the person you drove with, or friends you have in this fight, or people in your SD group. Typically, the staffers are the first people you will encounter. These may be interns or long time aids to the legislators. Be kind, polite, and state why you are there. Kindly ask if the senator/assemblymember has a moment to speak with you/the group. If not, ask if there is another person that can meet with you on behalf of the legislator.
TAKE NOTES: during your meeting. You will be meeting a lot of people, and take cards. Get emails. You should follow up with a thank you for meeting with me email the day after, while it is still fresh in everyone’s mind. This is also a chance to reflect on any concerns that were brought up in the meeting, and for you to address them.
BATHROOMS: are located on every floor, and nursing/pumping friendly bathrooms are on most every floor too, with couches!
BRING THE KIDS! There will be so much going on, the kids will think they are all on a giant playdate. Well, maybe. If you have family with you, or spouses, they can take the kids to the local museums or public library, if lobbying becomes too much for them. All within walking distance.
LET’S DO THIS!