Just a Girl on Capitol Hill
Posted by: Anne Valentzas at June 8, 2012
Category: Federal and State legislation
Everything I know about politics I learned from those Schoolhouse Rock videos they used to play on TV in the 70’s (“I’m Just a Bill”). So, you can imagine how intimidated I was to attend RESOLVE’s Advocacy Day this past April. But I believe in the Family Act of 2011
|"I'm Just a Bill" image from Schoolhouse Rock!|
Advocacy Day itself went very smoothly. RESOLVE was there to provide lots of guidance, and other volunteers were a huge help as well. It was an extraordinary day, and I felt empowered just being there because I believed I was making a difference!
But just as RESOLVE warned me, we did not get a commitment that day from my Congressman, Eliot Engel. And here’s where the most important part of my volunteering came in…the follow up. There are so many bills floating around on Capitol Hill that many issues are forgotten. Follow up was critical.
I sent a thank you note to Eliot Engel’s office directly after the meeting.
I followed up two weeks later, as suggested.
I solicited letters from my network of friends in my town, and attached them to another follow up email.
Finally, this week I received a pleasant surprise…an email from Eliot Engel’s office saying that he had decided to sign on as a co-sponsor to the Family Act! I can’t describe how elated I felt. After years of struggling with the disease of infertility and the lack of control that comes with it, I was finally able to apply persistence and achieve results!
While the Family Act is still just a bill, it could be a law someday…at least I hope and I pray that it will, but today it is still just a bill (if you remember Schoolhouse Rock, sing along.) In the meantime, let’s keep at it!
From RESOLVE: THANK YOU Anne for your advocacy! Thank you for coming to Advocacy Day and for following up. Your persistence paid off!
We have an opportunity to show Congress that the infertility community matters! On June 19th RESOLVE will be hosting a “Congressional Call-In Day” in honor of Father’s Day. Plan to call your Senators and Representative and ask them to support the
Family Act and to save the Adoption Tax Credit.
Anne Valentzas lives in Irvington, NY with her husband, Jason, 6-year-old son, Jake (IVF #5) and 2-year-old puppy, Hudson. She runs the affluent consumer marketing group at MasterCard Worldwide and, according to Jake, makes "the best cookies in the whole world".