[Note: As always any sample messages, letters, etc. that we provide are just that, “samples.” The samples are just what we’re sending out from this end and you are strongly encouraged to use your own judgment, voice and perspectives. Our prose, tone and approach can always be improved upon and quite frankly a good mix of perspectives is better than following our samples verbatim. We don’t do messaging for the group (nor do we aspire to) or ever speak for the group, but instead merely facilitate our members’ ability to speak at once for more power and volume. If you’re a “professional communicator” or would like to help with recruiting, research, administration, etc. shoot us a note and we’ll be happy to get you involved. There is no lack of work to be done.]
Outreach to Allied Groups Backing HR3149
Just for the record, if you’ve been on this journey with us since the beginning, we never thought a Facebook group alone would get this done. That was never been more apparent than with the cold slap in the face that SA 3795 received this past week. The good news is that we’re far from being alone in this fight as evidenced by the 30+ groups and organizations you’ll find listed below that back HR3149. We simply have to give them a wake-up call by demonstrating our group numbers and passion. In the event you can find the time to make a few phone calls in addition to sending e-mails that will help as well. It political terms this is our effort to "motivate the base." So let’s get started.
First let me thank you from my heart for your involvement and backing of HR3149: The Equal Employment for All Act. I’m part of a citizen activist group based primarily on Facebook with more than 3000 members and although we grow everyday, we know all too well that without the support of groups and organizations like yours, HR3149 doesn’t have a chance.
That was never more apparent than this past week when Senator Feinstein’s SA 3795, similar legislation to HR3149, was killed as an amendment to the Wall Street reform bill. Saying it was “killed,” according to our sources, doesn’t even begin to describe the carnage. It had barely been mentioned in the media and immediately, instantaneously the opposing forces rose up and ripped the amendment to shreds. From what we understand the opposing effort was an absolutely massive hourly siege of letters, phone calls, e-mails and arm twisting. Much of the mobilization you could watch take place via Google and the speed and precision with which they pulled trigger demonstrated a smooth, mobilized organization that was just waiting to strike.
Now get this, that’s the good news. Now here’s the bad news. As expected the big three credit bureaus and their background industry minions pounced, but the alarming news is that an existing organization of 20 “employer” groups that included the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers and the National Retail Federation, just to name three, clobbered every single Senator with a hand in SA 3795. We’re still trying to get the names of the other 17 truck drivers but just the license plates of those three culprits says all we and you need to know. If thousands of corpses from employment credit checks lined main street USA in every town in America, the big three credit bureaus and background check companies will continue to sell personal credit reports to employers of any American left breathing. Their greed knows no bounds and they have no conscience. The employers/power brokers meanwhile will never scrape bottom of having someone with good credit to hire unless our nation experiences a complete economic Armageddon. The irony is that these same people will send food and money to third world countries and condemn genocide and ethnic cleansing, but it’s ok to kill off the 48 percent of black Americans with bad credit? Not to mention 34 percent of Hispanics and 27 percent of Caucasians.
Somewhere around 100 million Americans have damaged credit already - well over 1/3 of the entire workforce. At least 25 million of our people are under or unemployed. More than 50 million children are starving and living below the poverty line. Between 8 and 11 million Americans have lost jobs and the economic tsunami that’s rising in Europe is heading our way. In this environment a father will drive his Mercedes out of the country club, drop his well fed child off at private school and then go to work at the credit bureau – to sell fellow Americans’ personal credit information to employers to ensure their children go hungry? All the while, no Hollywood celebrities speak out and no rock stars organize benefit concerts, just a nation of proud Americans . . . many of them in church on Sundays.
Just like 90 percent of Americans, you know it’s wrong and you’re officially backing HR3149 and we’re confident you’re doing what you can. The reality is that it isn’t and can’t be your sole focus, you have 100s of competing priorities, limited resources and there are only so many hours in the day. That exact same reality is true for our Facebook group and the 30 or so groups and organizations pushing for and backing HR3149. No one is faulting you, nor is anyone casting any blame. You may already be doing all you can do, but together one single hour found becomes 31 hours and those hours grow exponentially through networks and members. If that single hour is not found here and there throughout the weeks and very few months left, HR3149 is DOA if not passed before the November election. That’s the reality . . . the media tried to strike up the band in March when a couple census jobs were added and can’t wait to claim “problem solved” so they can cancel any reporting on workplace discrimination due to damaged credit. It’s an ugly blight upon the free enterprise system and covering Dancing With the Stars if much more fun.
While a lot of things need to happen, first and foremost, the issue of employment credit checks and HR3149 needs much more media attention. Our little Facebook group via media outreach efforts has already delivered a significant amount of coverage and we’re confident that your efforts have delivered their share as well. Nonetheless, it hasn’t been enough to even scratch the surface of what’s needed to actually succeed. HR3149 is DOA until every candidate is being questioned about it and the media is reporting their answer. Virtually no one in America has even heard of HR3149, but they can all name at least one of Tiger Woods mistresses? The recent House hearing a couple of weeks ago that included HR3149 got one Bloomberg News article and a pick-up in three or four obscure publications. Jobs and the economy are not the focus of the political class or the corporate owned “free press” in American and without HR3149 there is no jobs rebound!
Although we have some expertise within our group, we’re not the experts. Nonetheless, we believe that 98 percent of winning the HR3149 battle is simply a matter of media exposure and coverage. Just the money spent on one single Super Bowl ad could get it done. Instead, we have at least 31 different organizations and groups. Collectively that’s more than enough to make HR3149 the news instead of Tiger Woods.
The window for HR3149 is closing fast and time is not on our side. Our foes are formidable to say the least but at the moment we have the ballot box. Our diverse groups are never going to see the issue from the exact same perspective, have unified messaging or be dedicated 110 percent to getting this done, but collectively we can do far better than we’ve shown to date. The slaughter that SA 3795 took was embarrassing, humiliating and pathetic. Our efforts were a joke! How many e-mails, letters and phone calls did you produce? The American people during the second worst economic disaster in our history deserve far better than what we’ve separately delivered to date. So we’re reaching out to you and we pray that you will answer the call.
Let’s talk, let’s share, let’s organize, let’s innovate, let’s get energized and let’s prepare now for the huge fight we now know that's ahead. The opposition tipped their hand and we've seen their cards so let’s use it. Shooting us and e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts, plans, a high level overview of your efforts to date would be a great starting point. We’ll turn on a dime and support anything you have going and we have some ideas you might find intriguing You’re of course welcome to join our HR3149 Facebook group at: http://groups.to/h.r.3149 if you wish, but just joining groups as you know does nothing.
In closing, we freely admit that we’re NOT the experts, YOU are. However, it doesn’t take an expert to view what happened with SA 3795 to see that HR3149 has no chance whatsoever without a major collective effort from all of us working together. The writing appeared on the wall last week and if you read it you’ll find the time and resources to do more and we’ll hear from you soon. A collective path is the only path to victory. We all have to step up now and do more . . .
[End Sample Letter]
Contact Points for Our HR3149 Friends and Allies
The time has come to go the extra mile, in addition to e-mails, google some of the these groups and make a phone call. Share your personal story and let them know just how important this issue really is. We have to have motivated passionate allies in order to win, its just that simple.
AFL-CIO (Select “Questions about the AFL-CIO” option)
Asian American Justice Center
Communications Workers of America, AFL-CIO
Legal Action Center
National Association of Consumer Advocates
National Consumer Law Center
National Employment Law Project
National Employment Lawyers Association
National Fair Housing Alliance
National H.I.R.E. Network
National Organization for Women
National Partnership for Women and Families
National Women's Law Center
Privacy Rights Clearinghouse
U.S. Public Interest Research Group