When Congress is immovable — give it a prod
Monday, March 11, 2013
It’s easy to tune out news of what Congress is doing — or isn’t doing — in Washington. However, its actions impact us here, and we still must weigh in about the issues that matter to us.
I’m studying respiratory therapy, so I care about protecting lung health. I also have asthma, so I know what it feels like not to be able to breathe. I recently had an opportunity to put that passion into action. The American Lung Association made a presentation to my class on advocacy, and then we visited Sen. Mark Warner’s downtown office to lobby for protections from air pollution.
People with asthma and other lung diseases rely on the Clean Air Act’s air pollution monitoring programs to let them know when soot and smog make the air outside dangerous to breathe. These programs, and other public health protections, are threatened by budget cuts. (To learn more, visit fightingforair.org.)
We asked Warner to stand up for our air and health in Congress, and the staff took our concerns seriously, asked questions and promised to tell the senator. Advocacy matters, and we can’t let our frustration with Washington keep us from making our voices heard at home.
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