July 4th Recess – Take Action!

From CPR - Center for Public Representation:

Your incredible advocacy is working!  This week, the Senate Majority Leadership delayed the vote on the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA).  But we can’t sit back – we need to UP our advocacy!  WE HAVE NEXT WEEK TO #KillTheBill and #SaveMedicaid. 

Your Senators will be home for the 4th of July recess next week. We need to ensure that your Senators hear about how bad the bill would be for people with disabilities all recess long! More about the bill here and here. This toolkit details how you can turn up the heat and make sure that your Senators feel the pressure to vote NO to any bill that cuts or caps Medicaid!

  1. Attend town halls, events, rallies, protests, and 4th of July events and use every opportunity to advocate to #SaveMedicaid. 

Since Senators will be at home, they will be doing events (including town halls in some cases) and will be available for meetings. This is also a critical time to plan and/or attend rallies and protests.  Every single senator needs to hear from you, but especially if you are in a key state. Find out if you are in a key state here.

Below is a list of resources for events:

ADAPT is organizing rallies in each state–please get involved!

http://adapt.org/bcra-an-attack-on-the-disabled-americans-call-to-action/

ProtectOurMedicaid.org List of Events

https://medicaid.publicrep.org/events/

FamilesUSA List of Events

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1rorK0gdFiCJjVg56QKLTxnQq1lbqNlar9ootlYcm77M/edit?usp=sharing

Town Hall Lists

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/17LYGmGGZQYBTY5If6rox7Vjio3QpvCyOC3R51ZLIz_o/edit#gid=1796025145

https://townhallproject.com/

Search for Local Events

https://resistancenearme.org/

https://map.peoplepower.org/

Use every opportunity to advocate!  Call your Senator’s office to find out their 4th of July recess plans.  Bring a sign (create one here) or leaflet and turn any 4th of July event into an advocacy opportunity, especially if your Senator will be there!  If you spot your Senator, post on social media #SpotYourSenator and the location so others can join.  

If you don’t see an event planned, plan your own!  Let us know about it so we can share it!  And add your event or rally to the ACLU People Power map and invite people to join you:  https://go.peoplepower.org/event/action/create/

  1. Visit your Senator’s office and ask to meet with them or call them! 

Your Senators are home so stop by their local offices and ask to meet with them or their relevant staff! You should bring along a written copy of your story to leave with the office. To write up your story, include a picture, and a description of what Medicaid means to you! Examples are available here and here.

Keep calling your Senators! (If your senators oppose this bill, please call them and thank them!) You can call the main Capitol line at: (202) 224-3121 or you can call your Senator’s local offices, available here.

Below is a script of what to say:

Recess Week Script: Hello, this is [Name]. I’m a resident of [Town, State] and [I/my child/sister/friend/co-worker etc] is a person with a disability who relies on Medicaid for health care and community support. I am calling to ask Senator [name] to oppose any healthcare bill that caps or cuts Medicaid. Caps or cuts to Medicaid would be devastating to individuals and families and for [State].

[OPTIONAL: If you have a personal story to tell, it can be extremely effective. You can write it up before you call and read it!]

Please pass my concerns along to Senator [Name]. Thank you for taking my call!

[IF LEAVING A VOICEMAIL: please leave your full street address and zip code to ensure your call is counted.]

More detailed talking points are available here.

To find out about the impact of the BCRA on your state, look here:

https://medicaid.publicrep.org/feature/impact-on-individual-states/

https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B4gjt4TCd_7qV0NqUGt1S2dqa2c

http://www.statenetwork.org/resource/state-medicaid-financing-fact-sheets/

http://www.kff.org/interactive/medicaid-state-fact-sheets/

https://ccf.georgetown.edu/state-childrens-health-facts/

https://medicaid.publicrep.org/feature/impact-on-individual-states/

http://www.bazelon.org/our-work/advocacy/

And state coverage loss information is here:

https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/healthcare/news/2017/06/27/435112/coverage-losses-state-senate-health-care-repeal-bill/

  1. Keep Calling!!

In addition to calling your Senators, you can call your Representative and ask that they oppose the bill. If the Senate can pass a bill, the House will have to vote again and we want members to oppose the bill. You can use the same script as above!

You can also call the Senate HELP and Finance Committees. These committees oversee healthcare issues and have not held a single hearing on this bill!

Call the Senate HELP Committee at 202-224-5375.

Call the Senate Finance Committee at 202-224-4515.

Demand they hold hearings before they bring the bill to the floor for a vote!

  1. Get the Media to focus on this issue! 

If you are planning to attend a rally or another event, call your local paper and ask them to be there. Find local reporters on Twitter or comment on media Facebook pages. If you are at a rally or some other event and there are reporters or other members of the media, talk to them! Tell your story!

Write an op-ed or a letter to the editor for your local paper—we have examples and advice here.

  1. Reach out to friends and family in key states! 

Think about all of your family and friends who live in states with Republican Senators, especially key Senators who have expressed concerns. Call or email anyone you know in those states, and ask them to call their Senators. Share fact sheets and information with them.

Model message below:

Hi [Family Member/Friend], I wanted to be sure you saw this [fact sheet/article]. I am really worried that this healthcare bill is going to pass and cap and cut Medicaid in [your state], which means [the state will lose $/x number of people will lose healthcare coverage]. I’m also worked about [my state/myself/my family]. Have you called Senator [Senator’s name] about this? I have been calling my senators and have some scripts that I’ve been using that I’d be happy to share. [Your Name]

  1. Social Media

You can also tell your Senator your story on Twitter or via Facebook.

Take a Selfie and Share Your Reasons to #SaveMedicaid:  

Stories and photos have major power. Write down how cuts and caps to Medicaid will affect you. Take a selfie while holding your sign and post it to social media, tagging #SaveMedicaid and your Member of Congress. You can find their accounts here.

Tweet at your Senators:

We also have a hashtag list and a whole set of sample tweets here:

Hashtag List:

  • #SaveMedicaid
  • #NoCapsNoCuts
  • #KillTheBill
  • #ProtectOurCare
  • #DoNoHarm
    #CripTheVote
  • #SummerOfADAPT
  • #ADAPTandRESIST
  • #Medicaid
  • #NoBCRA
  • #DontCutOurCare
  • #ProtectMedicaid
  • #Trumpcare
  • #MedicaidWorks
  • #KeepKidsCovered
  • #SpotYourSenator

#SaveMedicaid #NoCutsNoCaps Tweets:

  • Cutting and capping Medicaid is dangerous for PWD #SaveMedicaid
  • Innovation needs funding. Cutting Medicaid isn’t the answer. #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid helps PWD live lives like everyone else #SaveMedicaid
  • We want to live in our homes, not nursing homes! #SaveMedicaid #NoCutsNoCaps
  • Federal cuts and caps will shift costs onto PWD & families – People who are already struggling #SaveMedicaid
  • Less money means LESS flexibility for states #SaveMedicaid #NoCutsNoCaps
  • Less money means fewer disability services for the people who need it most! #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid helps PWD get and keep jobs so they can be taxpaying citizens & full members of their communities #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid helps support kids with disabilities so they can get the free, appropriate education they deserve #SaveMedicaid
  • Unpaid caregivers (like parents) save taxpayers $450 billion a year. Cutting their support hurts everyone. #SaveMedicaid
  • Waiting lists are already years long. Medicaid cuts & caps would make them even longer. #SaveMedicaid #NoCutsNoCaps
  • Direct support workers are overworked & underpaid. Cutting & capping Medicaid makes the situation worse. #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid expansion has saved thousands of lives. Don’t turn back the clock! #SaveMedicaid
    People with less shouldn’t have to pay more for basic care. #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid funds Community First Choice, which helps PWD live at home instead of nursing homes & institutions #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid pays for necessary #SpecEd services that students with disabilities need to succeed #SaveMedicaid
  • Don’t be fooled: Caps ARE cuts. #SaveMedicaid #NoCutsNoCaps
  • Timely access to care is a life or death matter. #SaveMedicaid
  • We need more Medicaid funding, not less, to improve choices and quality of care. #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid is my lifeline. #SaveMedicaid
  • Without federal funding, states will have to choose which people to cover and which to let die. #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid is the nation’s largest health insurer for kids w/ disabilities & special health care needs, covering 43% of them #SaveMedicaid #SaveOurKids
  • Slashing funds to state Medicaid prgms puts tax cuts for the wealthy ahead of children and their futures. #SaveMedicaid
  • Nearly half of Medicaid beneficiaries are children: 30+million low‐income kids rely on benefits to live. #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid is currently the gold standard for children’s health care, including #EPSDT. Don’t force states to cut benefits. #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid covers foster children and children with disabilities. #SaveMedicaid so these kids stay safe & healthy.
  • Kids with disabilities should be in their own homes, not nursing homes. #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid is the largest source of funding nationwide for maternity care. #SaveMedicaid
  • 1in7 seniors rely on Medicaid for care as they age. #SaveMedicaid
  • Medicaid cuts and caps put our seniors in danger. #SaveMedicaid
  • “Flexibility” shouldn’t mean fewer, lower quality options for people with disabilities and families #SaveMedicaid
  • Today, Medicaid means healthcare and independence to millions of #PWD #NoCutsNoCaps #SaveMedicaid

Healthcare/Wealthcare Tweets:

  • @SenateGOP, your bill cuts Medicaid by 25% (and increasing) to pay for taxcuts for the wealthy. #healthcarenotwealthcare
  • #PWD and seniors rely on Medicaid for home and community based services–the @SenateGOP bill decimates that! #SaveMedicaid
  • @SenateGOP’s bill cuts Medicaid to give the 400 highest earning Americans $7 million EACH in tax breaks. That’s #wealthcare not #healthcare
  • Access to quality #healthcare = fundamental civil + human right. Cutting Medicaid by $772 billion to benefit America’s richest = #wealthcare
  • #AHCA’s caps on Medicaid spending neglect the actual health care needs of PWD in favor of tax cuts for the rich #healthcarenotwealthcare
  • #AHCA cuts Medicaid by $772 billion, just to give hundreds of billions in tax cuts to the wealthy and corporations. That is #wealthcare.
  • Medicaid is the backbone of essential Home and Community Based Services. If we want #healthcarenotwealthcare we need to #SaveMedicaid!
  • It is the job of the American government is to ensure access to basic living standards for all citizens. We demand #healthcarenotwealthcare!
  • Cuts to Medicaid + elimination of essential Home and Community Based Services for millions of PWD + tax breaks for the rich = #wealthcare
  • Every American has a right to thrive & contribute to the world. Professionals w. disabilities count on Medicaid to do so #healthcarenotwealthcareMedicaid serves not just as a healthcare program, but as a vital guarantee of freedom and dignity for millions of Americans #healthcarenotwealthcare

4th of July Tweets:

  • Independence for people with disabilities means #Medicaid. Celebrate the 4th and vote #NoCapsNoCuts, @[SENATOR]
  • #Independence comes in many forms—for #PWD, it’s #Medicaid. Support the right to live independently and vote #NoCapsNoCuts
  • Medicaid offers services that allow PWD to maximize their independence. This #July4th, fight 4 the right to independence 4 all #SaveMedicaid
  • People with disabilities rely on #Medicaid for job supports. Support independence and vote #NoCapsNoCuts #IndependenceForAll #July4

Check out these toolkits for more ideas on how to take action this July 4th recess: