advocatingLobbying is also about advocating.  This means speaking out in favor of specific public policies, issues, and even candidates for regulatory agencies and judgeships.  Advocating can both be part of lobbying and be a separate activity from it.  Nearly all public officials monitor their home newspaper’s editorial pages as well as statewide pages.  Writing a letter to the editor about an issue affecting the community or responding to someone’s else’s letter are good ways to introduce yourself as an activist to the community and to show that your issue has a voice in the community.  Writing, calling, or faxing public officials about specific issues, such as when a national organization sends out an action alert, are effective ways to team up to show the power and breadth of your issue’s community.  If you prefer to write your public officials, try to avoid using regular mail.  Instead, send email.  Since the anthrax attacks, postal mail is heavily screened, which delays its delivery for unknown lengths of time.  It is more efficient and reliable to send e-mail.  To find local officials’ contact information, try your city or county web site.  For state officials, try the state legislative website.

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