Basics of Advocacy
Why should I advocate or know about public policy?
The more you know and understand the impact public policy has on your profession, the stronger your profession will be. Everyone has a voice, and that voice deserves to be heard! When voices combine, they provide and ensure critical messages are heard throughout the legislative process. Public policy is your opportunity to directly make an impact in how your career advances, without which it may be left behind or in the hands of others.
How do you make public policy work for you without overstepping boundaries with your employer?
Start the conversation; don’t be afraid to speak with your employer about public policy, and ways you can advocate for your profession without putting your employer in a jeopardizing situation. Make the definition and allowance of advocacy and lobbying known. Depending on your employer, there may be certain areas or actions they cannot allow, based on your organization’s structure and role within society. This should not end your voice or role in public policy. If restricted, advocate on your own time (outside of work hours) without using work property (computer, laptop, stationary) responding to issues as a personal citizen, separate from your employer/organization.
How does public policy work for my career?
Public policy can grow your career as a registered dietitian, and can affect your role and future involvement in a variety of settings. Public policy efforts by registered dietitians, increases the public visibility of our profession and can assist with the formation of laws and legislation to protect and advance our job responsibilities.