State Action Day - National Multiple Sclerosis Society

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State Action Day

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At state capitols around the country, MS activists, Government Relations Committee (GRC) members and other volunteers convene annually to learn about MS advocacy priorities. Through coordinated in-person visits, they share those priorities with State Senators, Representatives, Assembly members, and other policy makers.

 

Washington State Action Day

Date & Time
Tuesday, January 27, 2015
10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Location
Washington State Capitol: Columbia Room (Ground / 1st Floor)
416 Sid Snyder Ave SW
Olympia, WA 98504
Map of Location

Register for this event now!

Note: If you are unable to attend in person, contact us to learn how you can take action from home on this important day.

About this Event
Agenda
Issues
Pre-Event Teleconferences
Scheduling an Appointment with Your Legislator
Directions and Transportation
Social Media
Accessibility, Event Reminders, and FAQ


About this Event
At State Action Day, we bring the stories of people living with MS to our state's elected officials, reminding them of the responsibility we have to meet the needs of our citizens, especially those with MS and other chronic diseases. MS Activists will learn about the National MS Society's legislative priorities in the morning and meet with their state legislators in the afternoon.

State Action Day is inside the Capitol and fully accessible. Participants will be empowered to tell their story to our state's elected officials, ensuring they understand the needs of people with MS. By advocating on behalf of the 12,000 people with MS in our state, participants will be leaders in the movement for world free of MS!

Limited financial assistance for travel to attend the State Action Day is available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please contact Linnea Nasman with questions at linnea.nasman@nmss.org or 800-344-4867, press 2 then ext. 40237.


State Action Day Agenda

  • 9:00 a.m.: Registration Opens in Columbia Room
  • 10:00 a.m. –  Noon: Program, including legislative issue briefings, keynote speakers, and advocacy skills training session
  • Noon: Lunch and legislative visits
  • 2:00 p.m.: Complete legislative visits and adjourn


Issues
We are still developing our priority issues, but they will likely include accessible transportation funding and ensuring our health care system works for people with MS. Handouts on our priority issues will be available soon here so check back often for updates.


Pre-Event Teleconferences
Like 2014, this year’s State Action Day will be shorter in duration than in years past. Because of this new format, we will offer two teleconferences ahead of time to cover material that we would usually cover during the program. These teleconferences are optional, but highly recommended. They will be recorded and available online if you are not able to attend. Please register below.

  • Pre-Event Teleconference #1: Tuesday, January 13, 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
    On this call, we'll review the day's agenda, talk about how to lobby your legislators and learn how to make legislative appointments. This call is especially recommended for first-time participants. Register here.
  • Pre-Event Teleconference #2: Tuesday, January 20, 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
    Learn about the issues we'll be discussing with legislators, including health care reform. Register here.


Scheduling an Appointment with Your Legislator
Attendees will need to make their own appointments with their legislators before traveling to Olympia. You’ll learn more about how to do this during the January teleconferences.  Make your appointments as early as possible, ideally two weeks before the event.

  1. Look up your Washington State Legislators. Make a note of their Capitol phone numbers.
  2. Call your legislator’s office. Ask to schedule an appointment between Noon-2:00 p.m. on January 27 to discuss health care and other issues affecting people living with MS. Mention that you are a constituent and an activist with the National MS Society.
  3. Be aware that another MS activist may live in your district and have already made an appointment. Ask the staff member if they have scheduled a meeting with volunteers from National MS Society, and if so, request to join that group.
  4. The staff member may ask you to email your visit request to their office. If so, be sure to include your name, phone number, and the date and reason for your visit. If you do not hear back within a few days, you may need to follow up with a phone call to confirm the request.
  5. If no appointments are available with the legislator, ask for an appointment with the legislative assistant.
  6. Make a note of your appointment and send the information to linnea.nasman@nmss.org.
  7. Download “Tips for Visiting with Your Legislator” here.
     


Directions and Transportation to the Capitol

Map of Capitol Location
Washington State Capitol Campus Map

Driving Directions:

  • From I-5 Southbound: Take "Exit 105 to State Capitol", keep left for Exit 105A, and continue for 0.8 miles to the roundabout at Jefferson Avenue. Continue straight through the roundabout and under the tunnel to Capitol Blvd. Continue across Capitol Blvd to the Capitol Building on Sid Snyder Ave SW (14th Ave becomes Sid Snyder Ave). We will be meeting in the Columbia Room on the ground floor of the Capitol Building.
  • From I-5 Northbound: Take Exit 105 and bear left for the State Capitol/City Center exit. Cross over Interstate 5 and continue 0.3 miles to the roundabout at Jefferson Ave. Continue straight through the roundabout and under the tunnel to Capitol Blvd. Continue across Capitol Blvd to the Capitol Building on Sid Snyder Ave SW (14th Ave becomes Sid Snyder Ave). We will be meeting in the Columbia Room on the ground floor of the Capitol Building.

Directions to Parking:
Recommended parking is the Park and Ride lot at the Farmer’s Market. Parking is $1.50 an hour. Intercity Transit’s free accessible Dash shuttle serves this lot every 12 minutes on weekdays, taking passengers to the Capitol Campus. Look for designated stalls with green striping.  Directions are:

  • From I-5 Southbound: Take "Exit 105 to State Capitol", keep left for Exit 105A, and continue for 0.6 miles. Merge with traffic on the left and continue through the roundabout and under the tunnel 0.4 mi to Capitol Blvd. Turn right on Capitol Blvd and travel 1 mile north to the Farmer’s Market.
  • From I-5 Northbound: Take Exit 105 and bear left for the State Capitol/City Center exit. Cross over Interstate 5, continue through the roundabout, and under the tunnel 0.4 mi to Capitol Blvd. Turn right on Capitol Blvd and travel 1 mile north to the Farmer’s Market.

Carpooling information:
Please let us know if you are interested in carpooling – either you need a ride or have a seat to offer someone. Contact Linnea Nasman at linnea.nasman@nmss.org or 800-344-4867, press 2 then ext. 40237.

If you need accessible transportation, limited funds are available on a first-come first serve basis for para-transit services. Contact Linnea Nasman at linnea.nasman@nmss.org or 800-344-4867, press 2 then ext. 40237, to find out if this option is available for you.

Limited financial assistance is also available to cover lodging costs for individuals who are traveling significant distances. Contact Linnea Nasman at linnea.nasman@nmss.org or 800-344-4867, press 2 then ext. 40237, no later than January 6, 2015 if you need lodging.

Individuals from the former Inland Northwest Chapter (Eastern Washington) should contact Nicole Nida for information about travel arrangements at nicole.nida@nmss.org or 800-344-4867, press 2 then ext. 77109, as travel assistance is limited and available on a first-come, first serve basis.


Social Media
Creating awareness is key to moving our legislative agenda forward and creating a world free of MS. The more people know about issues affecting people with MS, the more they will want to help. Social media is a great way to make sure people know that you are an MS activist. And it allows you to stay in touch with your elected officials after you leave Olympia. We must always be visible to our elected officials as they have many other people competing for their attention.

Tell your friends and family on Facebook and Twitter that you’ll be in Olympia on January 27 for State Action Day and invite them to join you. If you are on a Bike MS or Walk MS team, invite your teammates along. If you belong to a support group, invite other members to attend.

On Twitter, follow us @WeMoveMS and @MSactivist (our Twitter handle for our federal advocacy work). Follow and friend your elected officials on Facebook as well. Use the hashtag #MSactivist to find others committed to the movement.
 

Accessibility, Event Reminders, and FAQ

Accessibility:

  • Capitol Campus Buildings: All legislative buildings have entrance ramps to provide easy access. Each building on the campus has at least one door that is accessible by wheelchair. Click here for a map of accessible entrances.
  • Scooters are available to participants upon request. Please indicate your request in your registration for the event. If you have questions about accessibility, please contact Linnea Nasman at linnea.nasman@nmss.org or 800-344-4867, press 2 then ext. 40237.

Event Reminders:

  • Dress code: Business attire. Wear orange! Don’t forget to wear comfortable shoes.
  • Orange scarves: Do you have a National MS Society orange scarf? If so, please bring it to State Action Day. If you do not have a scarf, please indicate so in your registration and we will provide one at the event.

Other resources:

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