Be an Educated Voter!

Pediatricians and your patients and families have much at stake this election year with state and federal elections. Take time to learn more about the candidates and issues impacting the health and well-being of children and your pediatric practice.

For non-partisan voter guides, the MIAAP recommends:

 Resources

Interested in the MIAAP’s views on infant mortality, access to health care for children, immunizations and child obesity?
The MIAAP has produced educational pieces on each of these issues as part of our advocacy efforts. If you will be attending
any candidate forums or speaking to candidates for public office, please make use of these resources.


According to the 2009 American Academy of Pediatrics Advocacy Guide, advocacy means speaking out on behalf of your patients. As a pediatrician, there are 4 levels of advocacy you can engage in:

  1. Individual Advocacy — Individual advocacy is the direct care and resources you provide to your patients. This might
    be done by calling Early On to refer a patient, following up with a school nurse, or reporting a case of child abuse to the
    state Child Protective Services.
  2. Community Advocacy — Community advocacy builds on individual advocacy but benefits the children in the broader
    community. Community advocacy takes into consideration the environmental, social, and economic factors that impact
    the health and well-being of your patients and children in your community. As a pediatrician you can be an advocate in
    collaborative partnerships such as a Safe Kids Coalition, Great Start Early Childhood Collaborative, or a local school
    health advisory board.
  3. State Advocacy — The MIAAP engages in state policy and budget advocacy on child health and well-being issues. Our
    Advocacy and Government Affairs committee develops strategies and messages to address the MIAAP strategic priorities in
    the legislature, with the Governor and administrative branch, and in the judicial process, such as the lawsuit we supported
    Westside Mothers vs. the State of Michigan. The MIAAP professional staff facilitates advocacy and lobbying on behalf of our
    members and the children of Michigan.
  4. Federal Advocacy — Federal advocacy involves using your voice to advocate for national laws, legislation, and
    policies that positively affect child health. Most notably the AAP works on issues related to Medicaid, SCHIP (State Child Health
    Insurance Program), and federal Maternal and Child Health block grant (www.aap.org/advocacy.html).

How Can MIAAP Members Be Involved In Advocacy?

  • Join the Advocacy and Government Affairs committee by contacting Denise Sloan at denise.sloan@miaap.org.
  • Participate in the Resident and Medical Student Advocacy Day event. MIAAP provides advocacy training and hosts an annual day at the capitol for
    students. Contact Denise Sloan at denise.sloan@miaap.org.
  • Volunteer to provide expert testimony on MIAAP strategic priorities.
  • Contact the Michigan governor, state legislators, and federal officials here.
  • Respond to MIAAP electronic action alerts to advocate for MIAAP legislative priorities.

Follow MIAAP’s Advocacy and Government Affairs Committee

Communicating With Elected Officials

Elected officials are in office to represent the concerns of their constituents. They cannot do this if they do not hear from you!
There are several ways to communicate with them. Choose the method that you are most comfortable with.

How do I contact elected officials about child health?

  • Write a letter or email to your elected official; view the Citizens Guide 2017.
    (See sample below.)
  • Call your Elected Official and speak to him or her or a member of the staff.
  • Make an appointment to see your elected official or a member of the staff.
  • Write a letter to the editor of your local paper.
  • Vote! Encourage others to vote with children in mind!
  • Join MIAAP staff and members on legislative visits (Contact denise.sloan@miaap.org).

Follow Governor Snyder’s Facebook page

Governor’s Face Book Page

For more information contact the MIAAP at 517-484-3013, denise.sloan@miaap.org. 
For a directory of Michigan elected officials see Citizens Guide 2017.

Sample Letter to Elected Officials

 

Dear Honorable <<name>>:

Thanks for your support of <<specifiy>>. <<Specify>> programs such as << specify>> benefit << tell your story>>. These programs are cost effective investments because of <<give an example of evidence based return on investment>>. I am a voter and taxpayer who believes that the investments today will reap financial and social benefits for our state.

Sincerely:

<name>

<address>

<city, state, zip>

Remember this is a simple model. Your letter will be most effective if you use your own words and experiences.

 

You can send correspondence to elected officials at the following addresses:

State Senator

P.O. Box 30036

Lansing, MI 48909

State Representative

P.O. Box 30014

Lansing, MI 48909

Governor Snyder

P.O. Box 30013

Lansing, MI 48909

U.S. Congressperson

U.S. Capitol

Washington DC 20515

 

For a directory of elected officials see:

Citizens Guide 2017