Dear Research Advocate,
Sandy was a terrifying October surprise. The devastation in New York and New Jersey is extensive, and it will take a long time to rebuild and to heal. It’s a reminder that not everything is about the election. That said, it is impossible not to think about a major election theme — the role of government — and also to think about climate change, one of many science topics not being discussed in this election season. Yet decisions involving the future of science will be made by those elected. That’s why we need to turn up the advocacy volume as loud as possible after the election, when the lame-duck Congress and the administration, closely watched and influenced by those who are elected November 6, will work on a “grand deal” to avert the fiscal cliff. Even if nothing substantive is decided until the first quarter of 2013, the groundwork will be laid when the lame-duck Congress returns on November 13. Will you be heard then?
We are saving a virtual seat for you during the November 13-16 joint Week of Advocacy. Please join the growing list of partners working to make the biomedical and health research community’s Week of Advocacy a success — learn more on our conference call on Friday (details below) and/or contact firstname.lastname@example.org to become a partner. As you will see at www.saveresearch.org, we have produced an Advocacy Toolkit with a variety of resources including op-ed and LTE templates, editable scripts for phone calls to congressional offices, messaging points, social media messages, and a grassroots alert.
***A conference call about the Week of Advocacy will be held on Friday, November 2 at 3 p.m. EDT. Please dial in at 877-355-0068, using the code 64054826. We need your ideas and your participation — please join the call. RSVP to email@example.com. ***
“No science; no growth.” This was the message of an important op-ed in The New York Times by Dr. Neal Lane, professor at Rice University, former NSF director and science advisor to President Clinton. Follow Dr. Lane’s lead and write an op-ed or letter to the editor for publication during our Week of Advocacy!
Science has not, in fact, been growing, explaining in part why the economy is so sluggish. Last week, we released our annual U.S. Investment in Health Research report. It has garnered widespread and continuing news coverage inside and outside the Beltway. For a glimpse of how this report helps make the local case, see a story from Examiner.com that explores how dwindling NIH funding could impede plans for economic growth in Alabama. The Burrill Report is also covering the report in a podcast that will be available Friday at this link. Clearly, cutting funding for research is not in the best interest of the nation overall, or of states looking to power local economies with biotech research and innovation. No one wins if science is cut!
Be sure to vote!