In the wake of the election results, many of us feel compelled to take direct and necessary action in order to prevent some of Donald Trump's policies from affecting our lives. That is why knowing how to call your representatives to support women's rights to reproductive health care is especially crucial during this time of upheaval. While it's impossible to predict the full implications of a Trump presidency on women's rights, his campaign trail of conservative promises combined with his mostly conservative white male cabinet thus far doesn't look good for women hoping to maintain their right to accessible health care and birth control.
During an interview on CBS' 60 Minutes on Sunday, Trump stood by his commitment to nominating judges who would overturn Roe v. Wade and protect Second Amendment rights, but also stated that abortion rights would remain up to individual states. He's also expressed his desire to "repeal and replace" Obamacare (though, at times, he's seemed less committed to that), but doing so could certainly impact women's access to contraception, as well as its affordability.
This is where it's crucial that we step up, get involved, and call our local representatives to emphasize the importance of supporting a woman's right to choose as well as statewide support towards Planned Parenthood clinics. So, how exactly does one go about finding and contacting their representative to express support for women's rights? Luckily, it's easier than you might think.
The first step is finding out who your local representatives are, you can enter your zip code online through the House of Representatives website to find the contact information for your appropriate representatives in the House. You can also find your two U.S. senators by selecting your state on the Senate's website.
Once you've found out who they are, you can figure out how you want to contact them. There are several ways to contact your members of Congress about opposing any impending push to restrict women's reproductive rights or contraception access, but the quickest is by telephone. You can call the Capitol Switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask for your senator's or representative’s office, or you can use the Clerk of the House to find their contact information.
Once someone from their office answers, ask to speak to the aide who handles women's rights (or reproductive rights). For the sake of both parties involved, it helps to have a script or direct questions written out.
For example, I wrote one out that could be used as a template:
Hello, my name is _________, and I’m calling today from _________ to urge Senator/Representative _________ to support a woman's right to choose in the United States and to do everything in their power to support women's health and reproductive rights. I would like to know how Senator/Representative _________ plans to protect women's reproductive rights, so that I can fully support them and spread further solidarity.
It's the job of our senators and representatives to listen to our concerns and take action based off our collective action, so take a few minutes today to have a conversation about what we can do to protect women's reproductive rights from a Trump presidency.