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Getting Involved as an AIA Advocate

The responsibility of an AIA member advocate is to represent the profession’s interests before their representatives. AIA members need to do their part for their profession and their community. That is why it is important to contact your legislators and their staff on a regular basis, and encourage other AIA members in your community to participate as well. Doing so will make sure that legislators keep issues important to architects in the forefront of their minds when making policy decisions.

What You Can Do in Your Community

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Join the Advocacy Network

The AIA needs members to take lead for advocacy in their local communities! By joining the AIA Advocacy Network, you can strengthen the voice of the architectural profession through the engagement of legislators, their staff, and other AIA members on issues that affect architects. As a leader within your local component, we also need you to encourage other AIA members to sign up to participate.

Join the Network TODAY!

Respond to Action Alerts

It may seem simple, but responding to the AIA’s action alerts on key issues is one of the easiest ways to maintain contact with your legislator. The AIA’s advocacy center allows you to personalize your message so you can share your story—legislators do listen. After you take action, spread the word and inspire other members to do so as well.

Set up In-District Meetings

You don’t have to travel to Washington, D.C. to meet with your member of Congress – meetings can be held right in your hometown! When legislators return to their home districts for work periods, they want to talk to you, their constituent. This is your opportunity to speak with them face-to-face about the critical issues affecting the design and construction industry and the set an example of empowerment for other AIA members.

Think you don’t have the time to set up a meeting? It is easier than you think – AIA Advocacy has created the 7 easy steps to setting up an in-district meeting.

Hold a Legislator or Candidate Event

The easiest way to include legislators in AIA activities is to invite them to your component meeting. If the bulk of your membership is in their district, they will likely jump at the opportunity to speak to constituents. You can also invite them to visit a construction site. Partner with other local associations to show off all the contributions your joint membership makes to the community.

AIA-sponsored candidate forums or candidate coffees bring architects and political candidates together to discuss important issues before an election. Candidates, including current and future elected officials, have the opportunity to take stands on important policy issues that may not be addressed otherwise. In turn, architects have the opportunity to question candidates and to compare their positions on specific issues. Often, other local organizations will cosponsor these low-cost, high-profile events, and media will usually take an interest.

Advocacy & Social Media

Nowadays, most legislators have both Facebook and Twitter presences. By connecting with citizens like you in these more personable forums, elected officials and their staff can stay abreast of issues affecting the district. Their social media profiles even allow them to have continued conversations with constituents!

Facebook and Twitter are the most likely sites where your legislators are already present. To find a list of Twitter handles for members of Congress, click here. To find your member of Congress on Facebook, simply search for their official page to get started! One note: posting to your member’s Facebook page may require you to ‘Like’ the page before doing so.

Now you can interact with your legislators in whichever forum you wish! To help you with these communications during specific action alerts, AIA staff will create sample Tweets and Facebook posts for you to use. Follow AIA Advocacy on both Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date on when your voice is needed the most!


If you have any questions or want more information on bringing advocacy to your community, contact AIA Advocacy staff.


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This content is published by the AIA Government and Community Relations Department, 1735 New York Ave., NW, Washington, DC, 20006. To contact the AIA’s Government & Community Relations team, send an email to govaffs@aia.org.

 

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