Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Action for Pollinators

I got the following in an email from the Pollinator Partnership and wanted to pass it along. I don't see this specific information anywhere on their website, so here's a C&P of the email:

POLLINATOR ACTION REQUEST:  Oppose funding cuts to farm bill conservation programs in current budget
Participate in a nationwide effort by calling your U.S. Senators this Wednesday-Thursday (March 9 -10), and tell them you oppose cuts to funding for farm bill conservation programs that help ranchers and farmers improve habitat for native and managed pollinators and other wildlife.

Just make two calls to the U.S. Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121; and ask for each of your Senators. 
You can either make your points to the staffer who answers the phone or ask to be put through to the legislative assistant who handles agriculture. 

Suggested talking points:
Hi, my name is XXX; and I live in YYY.
  • I am calling to urge the Senator to oppose cuts in this year’s budget to funding for farm bill conservation programs that help farmers and ranchers improve habitat for native and managed pollinators and other wildlife.
  • Bees and other pollinators that help produce much of the food we eat and healthy wildlife ecosystems are in trouble, and scientists point to habitat loss as a major cause.
  • The 2008 Farm Bill for the first time included provisions to help increase habitat for native pollinators and honey bees through USDA’s conservation programs.
  • I am particularly concerned because the House recently passed a budget containing significant funding cuts in many of these conservation programs.
Add any other points to express your personal views.
Your calls will be part of a coordinated grassroots effort by conservation, wildlife and environmental organizations in the Farm Bill Conservation Coalition.  The shared objective is for Senate offices to hear overwhelming support (like a buzzing swarm of bees!) on March 9-10 from constituents for conservation funding.
NO, you don’t need to be an expert.  You just need to care enough to pick up the phone!  ;-)
YES, your calls can make a difference.  Each Senator’s staff tracks calls on key issues like conservation funding, and constituent views are a factor in Senators’ votes.
With serious budget deficit pressures, Congress is looking for places to cut.  Through your grassroots actions, we can try to at least minimize cuts to conservation.  If Senators don’t hear from constituents, conservation funding could be a serious casualty.
PS—You can also help by forwarding this action opportunity to your network of contacts.
Pollinators will thank you!
Feel free to send us an after-action report on your efforts.
Tom Van Arsdall, Pollinator Partnership Director of Public Affairs

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