Contacting Your Legislators 

How to Identify Your Legislators

If you do not know your legislator's name, you may find his or her name and contact information either by calling your county board of elections, or by clicking on the following links:

State Senators/Representatives

U.S. Senators/Representatives

How to Contact Your Legislator by Mail

It's important to address your letter correctly:

State Senator  
State Representative                      
Honorable John Doe               
Senate Building
Columbus, OH 43215

Dear Senator Doe:
Honorable John Doe
Ohio House of Representatives
77 South High Street
Columbus, OH 43215-6111

Dear Representative Doe:

 

United States Senate           
U.S. House of Reprsentatives          

Honorable Jane Doe
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Congresswoman Doe:

Honorable John Doe
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Representative:

How to Meet in Person with Your Legislator

  • Schedule the meeting in advance. Call the local office and ask to speak with the "scheduler." Be prepared to specify what the meeting will be about.
  • Be on time, be prepared, take material with you as well as your business card. You will rarely have more than 15-20 minutes to state your case.
  • Try to personalize the issue. Rather than stating that a bill is "unfair," explain how this affects your practice and/or your patients.
  • Volunteer to be a resource contact.
  • Follow-up with a Thank You note.

Tips:

  • Identify yourself as a psychiatric physician and constituent.
  • Identify clearly the specific issue or Bill you are writing about.
  • Be brief. State your reasons for support or opposition and ask your member for a specific action (i.e., co-sponsoring the bill, supporting - by voting Yes or opposing - by voting No on the specific bill) and thank him or her for considering your views.
  • Don't threaten or berate. Never demand that your Legislator support what you ask for or they will "lose your vote." This is counterproductive and they will simply ignore your viewpoints.
  • Type your letter and include your name and address on the letter itself.
  • Be patient when waiting for a response, but don't hesitate to follow-up if you have not heard anything after a reasonable time.
  • Don't be a "Pen Pal."