From November 6th through December 7th, a letter calling for change in U.S. policy towards Colombia will be circulating through the House of Representatives. This letter has our message, calling for a decrease in U.S. aid for Colombia's military and an increase in support for human rights and humanitarian efforts. To read the full text of the letter and see a current list of co-signers, click here.
Now, it's up to us to use our grassroots power to get at least 50 representatives to back up the initiators of this letter—Representatives Jim McGovern, Jan Schakowsky, Donald Payne, and Mike Honda—by adding their signatures before it is sent to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The best way to persuade your member of congress to sign on is by calling his/her office and speaking directly with foreign policy staff, so please do it today!
Below we've given you simple instructions for making that call. Although it isn't quite as effective as a phone call, if you would prefer to send an email to your representative, click here.
How to Make an Effective Call
1. Call the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121 and ask to be put through to your member of Congress. If you don't know who your representative is, click here to look it up. Ask the receptionist if you can speak with the Foreign Policy aide. If he/she is not available, leave a message. Below, we’ve provided a script that you can use in your phone call, but feel free to add any personal stories or thoughts that you’d like to share.
“I am a constituent calling to encourage Representative ____________ to sign on to the Dear Colleague letter written by Representatives McGovern, Schakowsky, Payne, and Honda, which calls for change in U.S. policy towards Colombia. This letter to Secretary of State Clinton asks that our government be honest about the human rights conditions in Colombia and make changes in the aid package. The U.S. should stop spending taxpayer dollars on the military, which has been found to be killing innocent civilians and illegally wiretapping human rights defenders, journalists, and Supreme Court judges. Instead, we should be supporting refugees and displaced people, Afro-Colombian and indigenous communities, and small farmers who are trying to turn away from coca. And we also need to invest in drug treatment centers here at home. I strongly urge Representative ______ to take a stand for human rights and sign on to this letter today. To get a copy of the letter and to sign on, please contact Cindy Buhl in Rep. McGovern’s office. Thank you.”
2. After you've made your call, if you have time, send a quick email to Vanessa, at firstname.lastname@example.org, so we can track how many phones we're ringing.