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The messaging guidance below is from DFAD, Opportunity Agenda, and Fight Back Table.
Extremist state legislators around the country are passing laws to deny our freedom to vote. The Senate must act quickly to pass national voting standards that ensure all voters can safely and freely cast their ballots, regardless of where we live or what we look like.
Describe the goal using phrases like “freedom to vote,” “cast our ballots equally,” or “national standards for voting access.”
Describe attacks on voting using phrases like “barriers to voting,” “denying our freedom to vote,” and “anti-voter bills.” Avoid using “voter suppression,” because many people don’t understand it, or conflate it with concepts of “fraudulent” votes.
Avoid abstractions like “democracy,” “voting rights,” and “election integrity.”
Connect voting to specific issues or tangible outcomes. (e.g. Voting is how we have a voice in the healthcare we have access to, the education our kids can receive, etc.)
Use camel case format in your hashtags to increase readability and accessibility (e.g. use #RecessCanWait instead of #recesscanwait)
Don't overuse hashtags and mentions because they can clutter your tweet, making it harder to readand less likely that other folks will want to share it.
What hurdles have the constituents in your state had to overcome to cast a ballot? (Or what obstacles would they have had to overcome if the anti-voter bills weren’t defeated?)
Share an anecdote from the last election day in your state.
Make the impact of anti-voter bills visceral for people who haven’t experienced them first-hand. What does the impact of the anti-voter bills look like? Feel like? What would it mean for your community to have the freedom to vote?
Call upon the history of resistance that has gotten us this far, and why we’re not willing to give up now. We've collected some historical voting photos for to you to use, including images from voting demonstrations at the Capitol in 1965. Download the photos below or from this Google Drive folder.
The American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act gives us a once-in-a-generation opportunity to build a stronger, more equitable economy and to shrink long-standing disparities. Hardship due to the pandemic and economic crisis is still widespread and is particularly difficult among Black, Latino, Indigenous people, immigrants, and households with children. State legislators will play a critical role in ensuring that the American Rescue Plan reaches those in need.
The American Rescue Plan is one of the most progressive pieces of legislation in history, with more than two thirds of its tax cuts and direct payments going to families making less than $90,000 per year. See below for a quick breakdown of some of the key benefits available to your constituents. Learn more at WhiteHouse.gov.
The American Rescue Plan increases the Child Tax Credit from $2,000 per child to $3,000 per child ($3,600 for a child under age 6) and makes 17-year-olds qualifying children for the year.
This means a typical family of four with two young children will receive an additional $3,200 in assistance to help cover costs associated with raising children. The families of more than 66 million kids will benefit.
Get up to $3,000 tax credit per child for children 6 and over
Get up to $3,600 tax credit per child for children under 6 years old
The American Rescue Plan increases the EITC for 17 million workers by as much as $1,000. The top occupations that will benefit are cashiers, food preparers and servers, and home health aides—frontline workers who have helped their communities get through the crisis.
Makes EITC available to far more low-paid workers not raising children in the home
Raises the maximum EITC for workers without children from roughly $540 to roughly $1,500, and raises the income cap for these adults to qualify from about $16,000 to at least $21,000.
See state-by-state estimates of the number of people who will benefit from the EITC.
Encourage constituents to lower health care costs by signing up for health care at Healthcare.gov.
The American Rescue Plan reduces healthcare premiums by offering additional premium tax credits (PTCs), expands eligibility for PTCs to more people, and gives many people receiving unemployment benefits access to plans with $0 premiums. These changes are reflected at HealthCare.gov and all state-based marketplaces.
The CDC national eviction moratorium will be in effect until June 30, 2021. The order does not replace or override stronger state or local eviction protections in place and tenants and advocates should continue to work for strong local, state and federal protections.
The American Rescue Plan continues the $300-per-week federal supplement to weekly benefits through September 6, 2021, and continues the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program that expands eligibility to a broader group of people.
Black women are severely underrepresented in state legislatures. It is time Black women received the recognition they deserve. Join us in this week of virtual events to shine a spotlight on Black women in state legislatures! Read the No Democracy Without Black Women report.
Monday, May 24: Sister Solidarity Day and Twitter Storm
Sister Solidarity Day: Everything looks better with a united front. We challenge Black women state legislators to join with one another and wear BLACK all day. Take a selfie, tell your story, and share it with us using #NoDemocracyWithoutBlackWomen!
Twitter Storm @ 2:00 PM ET/ 1:00 PM CT / 12:00 pm MT / 11:00 PT: Let’s take it to the tweets! Help us highlight the work of Black women by storming Twitter with likes, retweets, and posts about the Black women in your state legislature using #NoDemocracyWithoutBlackWomen! Add it to your calendar!
Tuesday, May 25: Instagram Live Interviews with Black Women Legislators
Join NOBEL Women, SiX, and our partners for our Black Women Legislator Instagram takeover! Black women legislators will go live with partner organizations to talk about the findings of the No Democracy Without Black Women Report and share their experiences as elected officials. Tune in to understand why it's important to have Black women in legislatures, the role that representation has on policy, and what we can all do to be in solidarity with the legislators.
Join State Innovation Exchange (SiX) and National Organization of Black Elected Legislative Women (NOBEL Women) for two panel discussions with Black women legislators focused on the No Democracy Without Black Women report that highlights the transformative impact and underrepresentation of Black women in state legislatures.
Elected, Now What? @ 12:00 pm ET / 11:00 am CT/ 10:00 am MT/ 9:00 am PT
A panel conversation featuring Black millennial women state legislators discussing the immediate transition once becoming an elected official and the future of policymaking in an ever-growing political landscape. Panelists include:
Tennessee State Rep. London Lamar
Tennessee State Sen. Raumesh Akbari
Georgia State Rep. Erica Thomas
Leading in the Legislature @ 1:00 pm ET/ 12:00 pm CT / 11:00 am MT / 10:00 am PT
A panel conversation featuring Black women legislators in leadership in the legislature and how to build a pipeline to more Black women leaders. Panelists include:
Speaker Adrienne Jones, Maryland House of Delegates
House Democratic Leader Karen Camper, Tennessee General Assembly
House Democratic Leader Joanna McClinton, Pennsylvania House of Representatives
In Mississippi, Black women make up 19% of the state population but only 8% of the state legislature.
Explore the data in your state. #NoDemocracyWithoutBlackWomen https://link.stateinnovation.org/NDWBW
The percentage of Black women in [STATE] is XX% The percentage of Black women in the [STATE] legislature is XX%
A fair and equitable society will only be possible once Black women have seats at 𝗲𝘃𝗲𝗿𝘆 table. #NoDemocracyWithoutBlackWomen https://link.stateinnovation.org/NDWBW
"As one of two Black women in our legislature, I face threats from people filled with racial hatred, I face erasure from my colleagues, and I face institutional racism." — @atticascott4ky https://link.stateinnovation.org/NDWBW
"Black women helped fuel change up and down the ballot during the 2020 Election; just imagine the transformational power ‘Black Girl Magic’ can have in city councils and state legislatures." —@RepBeatty
In the midst of a pandemic and economic recession that are having devastating consequences on Black women, the need for Black women to have decision-making power in the solutions to these crises has never been more apparent.
There remain 8 states without a single Black woman in their legislature, despite the Black population in each state ranging from 2-6%: Vermont, South Dakota, Hawaii, Arizona, Idaho, Nebraska, Montana, and North Dakota.
This is not what democracy looks like. Black women representation matters if we want real change.