CPJ's Advocacy Toolkit / Table of Contents
Building relationships with decision makers puts you in a good position to advocate for change. By getting to know your representatives—your MP, MPP, MLA, MNA, city councilors or mayor—and building a reputation of credibility, you can open doors for the future. Below are some ways to develop positive relationships with your elected representatives.
- Invite your representatives to events that relate to your cause. Show them that there will be thoughtful dialogue, and that neither they nor their parties will be verbally attacked.
- Attend events where your representative will be speaking.
- When you contact your representative about an issue that concerns you, follow up later on the progress made or lack thereof.
- Read the local paper and constituent brochures to find out what your representative is doing.
- Engage in thoughtful dialogue with your representitive, and show that you want to help them do their job.
- Avoid taking an adversarial tone or engaging in adversarial actions, as this may compromise your ability to have an impact, both now and in the future.
- If you support your representative, get involved politically by volunteering and campaigning for them or working in their local office.
- Make sure that you say “thank you” or “well done” when the representative does something that you like.
Finding Contact Information for Representatives
- Find your MP’s contact information using your postal code.
- Go to the website of your province (e.g. alberta.ca) to find your representative in the provincial legislature.
- Your municipal elected officials can be found through the website of your city, town,
- Contact information for government officials can also be found in
the Blue Pages of your local phone book.