March 19 & 20, 2013
MS Action Day is an opportunity for MS Activists from the Greater Illinois and Gateway Area chapters to trave to the state Capitol in Springfield, Illinois to launch our advocacy efforts and seek legislative support for priority issues.
MS Task Force
This objective involves a partnership with the state to develop strategies to address the unmet needs of people with MS. Legislative opportunities exist to partner with a state agency to raise awareness and education of MS and potentially collaborate on long-term solutions. In New Jersey, a MS Taskforce has been created to develop strategies to address the unmet needs of people with MS. In Indiana, model legislation allows the state department of health to work with the Lupus and Parkinson’s organization on education about these diseases and to accept grants to do so.
Medical Expansion (including long-term care and Illinois health insurance exchange essential benefits)
The Governor is committed to implementing Medicaid Expansion under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), therefore, the committee adjusted this issue to focus on the Long Term Support Services (particularly as it addresses home and community based services for persons with MS) portion of Medicaid Expansion. Also, this issue would encompass another part of the PPACA, the Illinois Health Insurance Benchmark plan, advocating for the inclusion of Health Benefits cited in the National MS society’s Health Care Reform Principles.
We are also asking Facebook and Twitter users to ask friends and followers to add their voices:
Facebook Users: Click Here to visit the Greater Illinois Chapter Facebook page. We ask that you "Like" the page, and "Like" and "Share" our MS Action Day status updates, so that your friends can see and click them, too.
Twitter Users: Click Here to visit the Greater Illinois Chapter Twitter feed. We ask that you follow the Chapter, and "rewteet" our MS Action Day tweets, so that your followers can see and click them, too.
You can also click this link to learn about other priority issues.
HOW WE IDENTIFY ANNUAL PRIORITY ISSUES
Through a collaborative effort between the Greater Illinois and Gateway Area chapters, MS Action Day paves the way for our chapters' strongest and most influential form of public advocacy. MS Activists learn about the Society's advocacy issues and then meet with legislators at the Capitol in Springfield, Ill. During legislative meetings, our activists address issues that are vital to individuals living with MS in Illinois.
This year, members of the Advocacy and Government Relations Committee, program staff and Greater Illinois Chapter legislative advisers, in collaboration with the Gateway Area Chapter staff, met to present and discuss issues important to people living with MS in Illinois. We also surveyed the MS Action Alert members in Illinois to gather ideas. The issues were prioritized and weighted according to various criteria.
WORKING TO END MS YEAR-ROUND
Taking action begins with MS Action Day, but advocacy efforts are carried out on a year-round basis. You can find helpful hints, how-tos, and tips to help you be an MS Activist the other 364 days of the year on our MS Activist Resources page.
For more information about MS Action Day, contact the Advocacy Department at 1.800.344.4867.