How to Educate Your Representatives about Teen Treatment in Four Easy Steps-Part 2

Oregon Capitol Building[This is the second part of a two-part post. See first post here.]
3. Be prepared for the unexpected. You can't plan for every contingency, but plan for the worst, so you'll be as prepared as you can be.

  • What happens if someone you were counting on to testify comes down with pneumonia?
  • What if one of your partners adds an extra speaker you didn't plan for?
  • What if several legislators on the committee you were scheduled to testify before are unable to attend the hearing, due to family emergencies and other crucial commitments? 

4. Plan for what's next.

  • Make sure you thank everyone who testified at the hearing and anyone who helped with logistics.
  • Talk about what you've accomplished. Getting that far is a big deal. Take photos of the group outside the hearing room to share with stakeholders in newsletters, blogs, websites, or group emails. (Photo releases are a good idea; youth under 18 will need their parents' signature.)
  • Stay in touch with policymakers on the issue. Be a resource when they need quick stats, for example, or testimony from struggling families.
  • Touch base with your stakeholders on next steps. 

5. Your turn. I know I promised four steps, but hey, nothing ever goes quite like you plan it.

  • Some of you have organized presentations to policymakers like the one I've described -- anyone care to share their own experience? Comment on something I overlooked?  

Updated: February 08 2018