Raise Your Voice with Decisionmakers

Raise Your Voice with Decision Makers

Learn about places where people don’t have access to contraception, and let your elected officials know that this must change. Elected officials make decisions that can expand or restrict access. Get informed about this critical issue and let your elected officials know what you think. Read on for questions to ask and ways to get in touch:

City and County Officials 

  • Meet your local elected officials. Set up a meeting with your local city or county council member or mayor to find out where they stand on issues related to birth control. Tell them that as a community member (and voter, if you’re 18) you strongly support the power to decide. Point them to our website for information. Some questions to ask include: 

    • Are there places in our community that offer contraception for women who aren’t insured? Is there adequate funding to meet the needs? If not, what can we do to change that?   

    • Do these places offer the full range of contraceptive methods? If not, what can we do to change that? 

    • What can you do to get the word out so women without insurance know where they can access no or low-cost contraception? 

State Officials 

  • Get to know your state decision makers. Research where your state Representative, state Senator, county commissioners, and governor stand on contraception. (If you don’t know who they are, this website can help.) Find out if:

    • They support access to contraception? Or

    • If they've stood in the way of expanding access to contraception?

  • Google your state official's public statements on the issue. Then set up a meeting to let them know why this issue is important to you and why it should be important to them. Use our contraceptive deserts portal to show them what access looks like in your county and state and how this compares to surrounding counties and states. Consider asking them: 
    • Does Title X Family Planning funding go to clinics in our state that provide the full range of contraceptive methods? Why or why not?  

    • Does our state have a state-funded family planning program? If not, why not? Is fo, does funding go to clinics that provide the full range of contraceptive methods? Why or why not?  

    • Do you support pharmacy access to contraception? What about insurance coverage for an extended supply of contraception?  

Federal Officials Who Represent Your State 

  • Contact your Representative and Senators. Your state may be doing a great job ensuring contraceptive access…or it may not be. In either case, you can help prod your state in the right direction and help protect what is currently supported or guaranteed by the federal government. Here are some things you can do: 

    • Get prepared. Check out our State Policy Portal to see the current laws and conditions in your state. You can also learn what other states have done to protect and expand access, and find states that have similar profiles as yours.  

    • Attend a town hall. Look at your Representative’s and Senators’ websites and see when they will have a town hall or open meeting time with constituents (or check here). Make a plan to attend the event with friends who share your views and ask questions. Not sure what to ask or say? Here are some questions that may be helpful. 

    • Make a phone call. Phone calls are an effective way to make your voice heard. It can be as simple as calling your representative or senator and letting them know you support Title X Family Planning funding and no co-pay birth control through the ACA. You can find information on what is happening in Congress on these issues and what you can say here. Watch this video for an example of how to make a phone call about protecting access to birth control for low-income women. 

  • Schedule a visit. Coming to Washington D.C? Use this time to schedule face-to-face meetings with your congressperson or their staff. To prepare, learn about what is happening with the issue of contraceptive access (click here to get ready) at the federal level. Find out where your members stand on the issues (a quick way to do that is to visit their home page). You often only get 10-15 minutes so be sure to use them wisely. (You can also meet with your congressperson in your state when they’re home for recesses. Call their local office to find out the schedule.) 

  • Go social! Many members have a social media accounts. Follow them and let them know that you support birth control and why. Simply cut and paste these messages to your social profiles—be sure to tag your representatives. 

    • Title X-funded clinics offer healthcare for low-income women. @YOURMEMBER birth control access matters to me and the 99% of women who use it. 

    • @YOURMEMBER, broad support for federal funding of Title X gives women + teens the power to decide their future bit.ly/2k5cc4h