Resources & Information - Contacting Elected Officials  see also Activism

How to Write To A
Government Representative

Letter-Writing Tips

1.  Be personal & Respectful
A mailed handwritten letter receives much greater attention than a preprinted card or letter. A short story about your personal experience makes your letter more powerful.

2.  State your request clearly and concisely.
Make a specific request.  Fulfilling a request causes more conscious awareness of the issue you are addressing. Keep your letter short and to the point.


3. Make it real.
Provide some brief information (a story, a few statistics, etc.) to make the issue concrete and very real for your member of Congress.

4. Follow up.
Call your Member of Congress’s office and ask to speak to the aide in charge of your issue.  Mention your letter and repeat your request.  Get a definite answer to your request (a yes or a no) or make plans to get a definite answer in the near future.


5. Since the anthrax problem at the Capitol, letters mailed to Federal Government offices can take as long as weeks.   Most have now opened up email access.  See Contacting Elected Officials  for email addresses. 


See also: Activism: Handbook for Protests, Demonstrations & Focused Communications &
littlebluedot.gif (881 bytes) Chapter 4 - Electronic Activism: Write To Your Representatives

Sample Letter


Dear <title & name>;


Thank you for all your hard work in representing our community in Congress.


I am writing to you because of my concern over certain governmental policies.  At this time, I am specifically referring to our participation in the FTAA.


While I am a firm believer in free trade, I believe that this, and other trade organizations, represent a trend of globalization designed to dominate resources and use forced compliance in order to facilitate the transfer of constitutionally mandated governmental services and responsibilities to the corporate sector.


I am not in favor of this trend, as I do not believe it is in any way free trade, nor is it consistent with a commitment to the protection of freedom and democracy. Further, I believe they contribute to the climate of American attacks by our enemies.


I would appreciate knowing your stance on the FTAA, as well as what you're doing to provide leadership in protecting the rights of U.S. Citizens and our Constitution when these agreements, as well as "Homeleand Security" legislation, come to your attention for action.


Your name
Your address