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ARA Home > Government Affairs OLD > Grassroots Resources
Grassroots Resources
 

 Getting Started - Learning the Basics

How to Reach Out to Your Members of Congress
Automotive recyclers are uniquely positioned to build long-term grassroots relationships with members of Congress. Most members of Congress would welcome the opportunity to interact with those whose livelihoods depend on the continued success of your local business. Opportunities for automotive recyclers to create and expand upon such relationships are everywhere and the value of taking advantage of them is priceless.

Locate Your Elected Officials
To locate and contact your Senators and members of Congress visit www.house.gov and www.senate.gov.  You can also contact ARA for assistance with identifying your congressional district and representatives.

Welcome Members of Congress into Your Community

  • Initiate a Member of Congress to drop by your yard for an informal visit.  Initiate this request through the district office of the Member of Congress. 
  • Ask the Member of Congress to “cut the ribbon” at your new or renovated facility.
  • Ask the Member of Congress to attend customer appreciation day or employee/family picnic.
  • Invite a Member of Congress to a local ARA or your ARA state chapter event. 
  •  Invite a Member of Congress to speak at a state/metro convention, association meeting, or play in a local golf tournament. 

Promote Members of Congress Within Your Local Community

  • Invite a Member of Congress to be the Honorary Chair at the major charity dinner in your hometown.
  • Ask the Member of Congress to be the Grand Marshall in a community parade.  If your business includes rebuilding, maybe you could provide the car.
  • If a Member of Congress sides with the automotive recycling industry on a politically sensitive vote, send a supportive letter-to-the-editor of your local newspaper.
  • Include a favorable story regarding a Member in the state chapter association newsletter and send a copy to ARA for inclusion in the ARA newsletter.  

Steps to consider prior to arranging or including the lawmaker in an event:

  • Write a letter of invitation detailing the event, i.e. date, time, location, number of participants.
  • Provide the Member’s staff with all necessary contact information.
  • Coordinate press coverage before the event, i.e. write a notice for your local media of the event and provide the Member's staff with the names of the media you have contacted.
  • Inform your employees of the special guest. 
  • Hand out a brief biography of the Representative. (ARA can help you with this if needed).
  • Record the event by taking photos.
  • Send the Member a thank you note and include photos and any press coverage the event received. 

Develop a Relationship with the Congressional Staff in Your Area
United States Senators and Representatives often use the staff of their home state offices to remain connected to their constituents.  These staffers live and work in your community, yet many have daily contact with the Washington office.  As such, they are well positioned to set up appointments or convey messages directly to the Member of Congress. 

Here are suggestions of ways to build relationships with district staff:

  • Ask the District Director to lunch, meet at yard.
  • Ask the District Director to be a guest at one of your state chapter association events.


If You Have Already Established a Long-term Relationship with Your Senator or Representative, Let Us Know!

Staff Contact: Anthony Livingston, Director, Government Affairs, 571-208-0428 ext.18 or anthony@a-r-a.org. 


 
 
 

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