Call of the Day: Ask Your State Reps To Take Action

This week's state-focused call is another grab bag.  Below are three bills before the state legislature right now, along with three scripts.  Call about one bill or call about all three – it's up to you!

1 – Stop State Reps from Defunding "Sanctuary Cities"

Last week, you called about HB 135, which would have allowed the Louisiana Attorney General's office to withhold state funds to local law enforcement agencies in areas deemed to be "sanctuary cities".  That bill died in the house, only to be resurrected and renamed as HB 676.  HB 676 goes to floor debate TODAY.  So call your reps today. 

If you don't know who your state representative is, go to www.legis.la.gov.  Click on "Who are my Legislators?" on the left side of the Home page, and enter your address.  Then click on your State Representative's name to be taken to their website and their contact info.  It's actually really quick to do, promise.

WHO TO CALL (example – your reps may differ!): 

State Representative Neil Abramson:  (504) 275-8051

Sample Script:

Hi, my name is [Name] from New Orleans, zip code 70118 [or wherever you're from].  I don't need a response. 

I'm calling because I want Rep. [NAME] to vote against HB 676, the Sanctuary cities bill.  This bill would put an unnecessary strain on already-overburdened police departments.  It erodes trust in law enforcement and makes it less likely that immigrant victims of crimes will report crimes.

Thank you for your time and your work answering phones.

2 – Save Our Scenic Rivers From Developers

The Natural and Scenic Rivers Program is a state-wide initiative that prevents land development and other commercial activities near certain ecologically important and beautiful river systems.  But some land developers have been pushing for greater access in these tightly protected areas.  SB 132, which has moved onto the House Natural Resources Committee, would exempt several currently-protected river systems from the Scenic Rivers Program, including the Comite River, Pearl River, Tchefuncte River, Bogue Falaya River, Abita River, Amite River and Bayou Manchac.

The rationale behind the bill is that SB 132 would allow dredging of these rivers, which would help prevent flooding.  However, no studies or hydrology assessments have been performed on this land or on whether river-dredging would help prevent flooding due to extensive rainfall.  (Spoiler:  It won't.  Seriously, that doesn't even make sense.)  With coastal erosion and over-development of bayous and wetlands posing such a threat to Louisiana, it's critical that we push back on a bill that would make it easier for developers to destroy our protective ecosystems.

If you don't know who your state senator is, go to www.legis.la.gov.  Click on "Who are my Legislators?" on the left side of the Home page, and enter your address.  Then click on your State Senator's name to be taken to their website and their contact info.  It's actually really quick to do, promise.

WHO TO CALL (example – your reps may differ!): 

State Senator Conrad Appel:  (504) 838-5550

Sample Script:

Hi, my name is [Name] from New Orleans, zip code 70118 [or wherever you're from].  I don't need a response. 

I'm calling because I want Sen. [NAME] to vote against SB 132, should it even make it out of committee.  This bill would put the delicate ecosystems of our scenic rivers at risk of over-development and unnecessary dredging.  Nor have any scientific studies or hydrology assessments yet been performed to prove that the bill is needed. 

Thank you for your time and your work answering phones.

3 – Raise the Minimum Wage

It's about time we raise the minimum wage in this state, right?  SB 153 would raise the state minimum wage to $8.50/hr by 2019.  Yes, I know that's a far cry from the $15/hour that many activists are calling for.  But it's a start. 

If you don't know who your state senator is, go to www.legis.la.gov.  Click on "Who are my Legislators?" on the left side of the Home page, and enter your address.  Then click on your State Senator's name to be taken to their website and their contact info.  It's actually really quick to do, promise.

WHO TO CALL (example – your reps may differ!): 

State Senator Conrad Appel:  (504) 838-5550

Sample Script:

Hi, my name is [Name] from New Orleans, zip code 70118 [or wherever you're from].  I don't need a response. 

I'm calling because I want Sen. [NAME] to vote in favor of SB 153, which would raise the minimum wage.  This bill is an important first step in fair pay for workers in our state. 

Thank you for your time and your work answering phones.


This call is courtesy of Indivisible Metairie.