As candidates gear up for the summer barbecue circuit, the National Association of Federal Retirees advocacy team is gearing up to make a big impact in this fall’s election.
In collaboration with Federal Retirees’ board of directors and advocacy committee, regional advocacy program ofﬁcers, and 79 vibrant branches from coast-to-coast-to-coast, the Association will be rolling out exciting materials and activities so all 176,000 members have the opportunity to engage with this fall’s election. As a non-partisan organization, the Association strives to provide members with the tools they need to interact with their local politicians and make an informed decision at the ballot box.
In this election, Federal Retirees has set out four key priorities:
- retirement income security,
- a national seniors strategy,
- support for veterans and their families, and
Each of these priorities touch our membership in different ways. While some may ﬁnd all four to be on their wish-list for the upcoming election, others may identify one or two as their top priorities.
So, the question is: as a member, what will you do to move your priority forward?
Whatever your priority is for this election, you can play a role in ensuring it’s top of mind for candidates in your region and the political parties they represent. Regardless of your level of experience, your schedule, or your location, Federal Retirees has an option to help you participate and spread the word. Together, our voices will raise awareness of the importance of these issues to our membership and to all Canadian seniors.
Find 5 friends
Federal Retirees has a tradition of strong, smart advocacy campaigns that seek not only to protect against changes to our members’ hard-earned pensions and beneﬁts, but also to support good policy that improves the lives of all Canadians in their retirement. Our success is largely due to the hard work and tenacity of members like you, but our partnerships with like-minded organizations and individuals help us amplify our message beyond the limits of our membership.
While 176,000 members carry inﬂuence in this upcoming election, we must continue to encourage others to join our campaigns and support us with their votes in order to make an impact in a sea of what could be more than 18 million Canadians who cast ballots.
So, what does that mean for you?
Tapping into your own network of fellow federal retirees, friends, and family members, who understand the importance of a secure retirement, access to affordable medication and care in community settings, and support for veterans’ families is a great place to start. Check out our website and social media channels for information to share and encourage your network to add their names in support of our campaign. This will help strengthen our impact and ensure those individuals also receive updates from the Association, including ways to get further involved with the campaign.
Setting an ambitious, yet achievable, target of ﬁve friends can be a great way to get started and stay motivated.
Engage with candidates
In the lead up to and throughout the election, Federal Retirees will be distributing a variety of tools to help people engage directly with their local candidates. Again, our aim is to help our members ask strong, smart questions of their candidates about our four key priorities. This raises awareness around the importance of our issues as well as providing helpful information on candidate and party policy to help our members make an informed decision on election day.
Federal Retirees is developing a suite of cool tools for members to use: from toolkits, to online training sessions, to email-to-candidates tools, to postcards and leaﬂets. Whether you plan to connect with candidates online or in-person, our tools have been developed to be accessible and easy to use. Check out our website for links to online tools or to request a toolkit to be delivered to you.
Attend an event
In collaboration with our 79 branches across the country, Federal Retirees will be hosting a variety of in-person and remote-access events for the upcoming election. These events provide an opportunity to participate in our campaign and to elevate our priorities. They are also a great chance to meet other Association members and volunteers. We are lucky to have vibrant, smart, active members in every part of the country — and while our team is focused on bringing people together to advance our advocacy goals, many of our members ﬁnd friendship and meaningful connection when they take part in our activities.
As the election approaches, there will be many tools and occasions for members to participate. While Federal Retirees continues to use Sage magazine as an important means of communicating with all of our membership, we can communicate more frequently on emerging issues using email. In this election, we will share important campaign updates with our members and supporters primarily using email.
If you are not yet receiving emails from the National Association of Federal Retirees and would like to, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name and membership number so we can make sure you receive campaign updates and information about more ways to get involved.
This article will appear in Sage summer 2019. If you’re eager for more, be sure to peruse our collection of back issues.