Activism is a high priority for the National MS Society and a key component of our overall mission. Activism is a partnership between staff and individual activists
- We address challenging, complex policy issues and work to establish or improve community resources tailored to the specific needs of people with MS and often other disabilities.
- We relentlessly advocate for federal, state, and local government programs. In each state volunteer Government Relations Committees define advocacy priorities, and engage in legislative, regulatory and private sector advocacy. It takes much effort by many people often over many years to achieve any changes. That is why we need and appreciate your help and the help of all our advocates.
- We join forces with individuals and organizations to advance common goals
- We help people affected by MS learn to advocate for themselves.
- Chapter initiated bills were signed into law in Massachusetts relating to a study bill for the long-term care needs of people with MS and other disabilities and a voice on regional transit authority advisory boards.
- Since 2000, we advocated to ensure funding in the Massachusetts state budget for MS information, referral and care management services known as Home LINKS
- Chapter initiated bills were signed into law in New Hampshire pertaining to accessible parking and public awareness of these laws.
- We secured state funding in NH to assist persons with MS with out of pocket medical expenses through the State Catastrophic Illness Fund.
- We enlisted 4300+ registered chapter MS activists for Action Alert to date. We are now working on ways to better keep our activists informed on advocacy issues through our website and via email so they can more easily get involved when needed.
- We created the Adult Onset Disability Alliance in Massachusetts, working with coalition partners to leverage success for priority issues common to all.
We implement advocacy and policy events with government officials, including:
- Each spring, a delegation meets with Congressional leaders on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C..
- Annual MS Awareness Week activities to educate lawmakers
- Annual events at our state capitols
Our activism efforts have been recognized:
- We received the National MS Society Pamela Cavallo award for excellence in advocacy activities.
- Chapter volunteers Tony Loureiro & Ginny Morse have been inducted into to the National MS Society Volunteer Hall of Fame for advocacy accomplishments.