For the past 7 years, citizen animal advocates have gathered in Harrisburg for an annual event called Pennsylvania Humane Lobby Day. Participants at this one-day event, sponsored by The Humane Society of the United States, attend a training to learn about lobbying, as well as pending state-level humane legislation. Right after the training, advocates meet face-to-face with their legislators (or key staff members) to ask for their support on animal welfare measures. This year’s Humane Lobby Day will be held on Monday, April 28th , followed by Humane PA’s Pawlitics Happy Hour (please register in advance) and lunch buffet where we can relax and get to know fellow advocates. Humane Lobby Day organizers make appointments with legislators on participants’ behalf, so it is important to register for Humane Lobby Day well ahead of time.
Here are a few key reasons to join your fellow advocates in Harrisburg to support better laws for Pennsylvania’s animals:
Make a Real Difference for Animals
- As a constituent, an in-person visit with your legislator is the most effective thing you can do to help secure the votes to pass animal friendly legislation.
- The concerned voices of just a few constituents can be enough to sway a legislator’s vote on a particular issue. Every advocate really does count!
First-time Citizen Lobbyist? Have no fear!
- Meeting your lawmakers in person at the state capital might sound a bit intimidating if you’ve never lobbied before. But no need to worry, because Humane Lobby Day is carefully tailored for all animal advocates – beginners included. First time citizen lobbyists are most definitely welcome and needed at Pennsylvania Humane Lobby Day.
- The pre-lobbying workshop will teach you about selected humane legislation and how to communicate effectively with your legislators. The event organizers will provide you with all the tools necessary to be a great citizen lobbyist – all you need to bring is your care and concern for animal welfare.
- Don’t worry, you won’t be alone: all constituents for a given legislator will have the same appointment time, and will lobby as a group.
- As a constituent, you will be a respected guest in your legislator’s office, and will be treated with courtesy, regardless of the lawmaker’s views on animal protection issues.
- Meet animal advocates from all over the state.
- Enjoy the camaraderie of working together with other humane-minded Pennsylvanians to give animals a voice. Come to the state capital, and experience the strength in our numbers firsthand – it’s a great feeling.
Humane Lobby Day only comes once a year, and this is a golden opportunity to show your state lawmakers how much Pennsylvanians care about animal welfare. This year’s lobby day is shaping up to be the biggest and best yet, with more people already registered than ever before – so don’t be left out! Join your fellow citizen advocates in Harrisburg on April 28, and take a stand for animals – you’ll be so glad that you did.
Haley Courville is a member of the Florida Bar and has been an active volunteer with Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida, Inc. since 2009. She has previously served as a volunteer legislative assistant in the State Affairs department of The Humane Society of the United States and is currently a volunteer intern with Humane PA.