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46 weeks to Midterm Elections

The AoC Checklist features clear, well-researched actions for Americans who value democracy, equality, voting, and decency. We are a big tent for all people who want a kinder, flourishing nation.

If you only have 10 minutes, take our top three suggested actions:

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In this edition of the AoC Checklist:

Contact your senators

Check the box if you made contact–whether for one issue or all–so we can count your action. Contacting your senators’ staffers with multiple concerns is more efficient for both of you. They don’t mind, but be sure to contact both progressives and conservatives. They need to hear from you.

Look up your senators here.

Join the 137 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

Your script: Hi, I’m from [ZIP] calling/writing about several issues. I’d like Sen. [NAME] to:

Contact your House representative

Check the box if you made contact–whether for one issue or all–so we can count your action. Contacting your representative’s staffers with multiple concerns is more efficient for both of you. They don’t mind, but be sure to contact both progressives and conservatives. They need to hear from you.

Look up your House representative here.

Join the 70 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

Your script: Hi, I’m from [ZIP] calling/writing about several issues. I’d like Rep. [NAME] to:

I value demo­­­­cracy

With respect and collaboration, we work to create a nation that welcomes all people, expands freedoms, and upholds the Constitution. Each citizen must be able to freely and fairly elect those who represent their values.

Action 1: Support fair maps and oppose partisan gerrymandering in your state.

Source: League of Women Voters

Join the 84 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

If you live in AL, AK, AR, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MN, MS, MO, NE, NV, NH, NM, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, WV, WI, or WY: Contact your state legislators (look up).

Script: Hi, I’m a resident of [ZIP], asking you to ensure that [STATE]’s congressional district maps are drawn fairly. Using independent redistricting commissions makes the map-drawing process more transparent and equitable, reducing the chance of partisan gerrymandering. Can I count on you to support [STATE]’s switch to an independent commission? Thank you.

If you live in AZ, CA, CO, HI, ID, MI, MT, NJ, VA, or WA: Your state already uses an independent commission to draw its maps. Donate to the League of Women Voters to support their work to dismantle gerrymandering in other states.


Action 2: Stop extremists from running your state’s elections.

Source: Brennan Center

Join the 76 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

Contact: Your state legislators (look up).

Script: Hi, I’m a resident of [ZIP] calling because I’m concerned about the threat of people with anti-democracy ideologies running 2022 midterm elections. While the FBI tracks these threats, I’m asking you to follow the Brennan Center’s four recommendations for election security:

  1. Restrict access to election systems to only people who need them to perform their responsibilities.
  2. Establish transparency protocols and monitor for inappropriate activity.
  3. Establish clear processes for removal of officials and workers who actively undermine election integrity.
  4. Establish security standards for election equipment vendors.

Thank you.

Bonus action: Contact your Secretary of State and county election officials (look up) with the same request.

I value equality

Support the dignity of your rainbow of neighbors from every religion, race, ethnicity, culture, gender, sexual orientation, economic status, age, and ability.

Action 3: Support grandparents’ access to caregiver assistance.

Source: Generations United

Join the 41 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

Contact: Your two senators and one House rep (look up).

Script: Hello, I’m contacting you from [ZIP] in solidarity with grandparents raising grandchildren. American grandfamilies are currently raising 2.6 million children, yet have limited access to available resources compared to parents and foster families. I’m asking [NAME] to support legislation that implements the recommendations of the Advisory Council to Support Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, including a kinship caregiver tax credit and more equitable access to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families and foster care maintenance payments.


Action 4: Encourage using new federal funds to house our homeless neighbors.

Source: End Homelessness

Join the 31 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

Contact: Your mayor or local government officials (use search for contact info).

Script: Hello, I’m reaching out to alert you to the new House America program through HUD, funded by the American Rescue Plan. To address the homelessness crisis, local, tribal, and state governments now have access to emergency housing vouchers, HOME grants, and funds to provide housing. Our neighbors experiencing homelessness need housing and stability. Will [NAME] please pledge to reduce homelessness in our community and take advantage of these resources?


Action 5: End harms caused by the federal criminal-legal system.

Source: The Leadership Conference

Join the 71 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

Contact: The Honorable Merrick Garland, Attorney General at U.S. Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20530 or via this contact form.

Script: Despite this administration’s commitment to racial justice, harmful policies still disproportionately impact Black and Brown Americans. I am writing to ask  you to prioritize policies and agency changes to the federal criminal-legal system, including: 

Thank you.


Action 6: Support critical medical care after destructive tornadoes.

Source: AoCC

Join the 17 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

When homes, services, and businesses were completely destroyed, some may make the difficult decision to terminate a pregnancy. In the wake of the immense loss caused by recent tornadoes, we can offer support and solidarity as people seek this critical medical care.

Donate: To organizations providing abortion services in hard-hit states.


Action 7: Advocate for phasing out taxpayer-funded private prisons.

Source: AoCC

Join the 75 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

Contact: The Biden administration at (202) 456-1111 or via the online contact form.

Script: Hello, I’m contacting you in solidarity with Detention Watch and Project South to support phasing out the federal use of private prisons for incarceration and detention. Since the executive order was issued, implementation has been inconsistent and often contradictory. I’m asking that you: 

  • release people from immigration detention, cancel ICE detention contracts, decline to renew contracts, and halt expansion efforts;
  • fully phase out the DOJ’s privately-operated prisons;
  • extend the executive order to ICE contracts;
  • cease intervention in litigation against state laws banning the use of private prisons;
  • reduce funding for ICE detention by 50 percent in Fiscal Year 2023; and
  • fully repeal MPP and end Title 42.

Action 8: Support Wendy Dowe, who survived nonconsensual sterilization in an ICE detention center.

Source: Project South

Join the 20 Americans of Conscience who have completed this action by checking the tally box!

Wendy Dowe is a survivor of medical abuse and a nonconsensual hysterectomy at Irwin Detention Center. By bravely coming forward with her story and filing an OIG complaint, she exposed taxpayer-funded abuses taking place, leading to a Congressional probe and the closure of the facility. Wendy and other survivors have yet to receive justice from the abuses ICE officials inflicted on them. Let her know she’s not alone.

Donate: To Wendy’s GoFundMe to help cover the expenses related to her ongoing recovery.

Acts of Grati­­­­tude

Signatures to the forms below will be printed with a letter of thanks from Americans of Conscience, and mailed to the recipient 2 weeks after the Checklist publication date. Your information will not be stored after that date.

Thank President Biden for nominating new members to the USPS board to hasten the removal of Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, whose deliberate slow-down of mail delivery hindered free and fair elections. We look forward to USPS leadership that supports ethics, voting, and democracy.

If you’d like to send your own personal expression of gratitude, use: White House contact form


Thank you to the LGBT Asylum Task Force for offering housing and monthly stipends to LGBTQ+ aspiring Americans who have fled their home countries due to persecution.

If you’d like to mail your own personal expression of gratitude, use this address: 6 Clover Street, Worcester, MA 01603


Thank AG Merrick Garland for taking steps to address threats, harassment, and intimidation of educators and school board members. We agree with your statement that “Those who dedicate their time and energy to ensuring that our children receive a proper education…deserve to do their work without fear for their safety.”

If you’d like to mail your own personal expression of gratitude, use this address: U.S. Dept. of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, DC  20530-0001

Good News

As Americans of Conscience, we celebrate!

Progress on issues featured in past Checklists

  • The Sentencing Project reports reductions in mass incarceration, expansion of voting rights, and advancements in racial justice achieved by advocates and lawmakers in 2021.
  • House passes the Protecting Our Democracy Act to enforce the emoluments clause and protect against executive branch abuse of power. (October 1 Checklist)
  • President Biden nominates new members to the USPS board to hasten the removal of Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, whose slow down of mail delivery hindered free and fair elections.

National

State

  • KY’s largest solar project will be built on 1,200 acres of a former coal mine and will employ former coal workers.
  • MA: Rachel Rollins, whose career is marked by action towards criminal justice reform, is confirmed by the Senate as U.S. attorney for Massachusetts, becoming the first Black woman to hold the position.
  • MD legislature overrides vetoes of two bills prohibiting local police participation in ICE enforcement.
  • TX: State-level court finds that TX’s restrictive abortion law violates the state constitution.
  • WI: Gov. Tony Evers vetoes several bills that would have limited access to abortions.

Local

  • Mason, OH city council repeals a law criminalizing abortion.
  • Lisa Middleton is sworn in as mayor of Palm Springs, becoming CA’s first openly transgender mayor and only the third openly transgender mayor in U.S. history.
  • Deqa Dhalac is elected mayor of South Portland, ME, becoming the first Somali-American elected mayor of any U.S. city.
  • A police officer, believed to be the first Kansas City law enforcement officer since 1941 to stand trial for the fatal shooting of a Black man, is found guilty for the death of Cameron Lamb.

Corporate/business

Groups and organizations

  • Columbia University’s student workers’ union strike contines to call for living wages and stronger employee protections.
  • Starbucks employees in Buffalo, NY vote to unionize, becoming the first of the chain’s stores in the U.S. to do so.
  • PEN America hosts a teaching session providing resources to students to protect their First Amendment rights and access to diverse literature.
  • Fernando, seeking asylum from Venezuela, is released from immigration detention with the help of humanitarian aid group Border Angels.
  • A client of Al Otro Lado who is a survivor of human trafficking has her T-visa approved and can remain in the U.S.

News with heart


Support the Checklist in 2022

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2 Comments

  1. Aloha,
    I have been part of AOC checklist for possibly since its beginnings. I would like to call the attention of all who are here to the seriousness of what is happening in Oʻahu Hawaii, at Red Hill; Kapu Kaki. The U.S. Navy has a number of 250,000 gallon tanks filled with jet fuel, built over the Halawa Aquifer, which provides clean drinking water to 400,000 Hawaiian residents and visitors. There has been a breech and the fuel has entered into the drinking water. There has been a call to drain the tanks for years, but this last catastrophe has renewed the calls. All of these requests have landed on obstinant ears at the U.S. Military, claiming that all is well. The latest city council meeting on Wednesday, unanimously passed two bills that would come up against the Militaries cart blanche to continue with business as usual. It would be very helpful to have the help of this community to write letters to president Biden to call for emergency action and shut down these tanks. Please let me know if we can work together to get this done.
    Mahalo Nui,
    Thank you very much for all that you Do!

    • Hi Shar, Thank you for your comment. We agree that clean water is a basic right of all people. The news about these developments is deeply concerning. If you have the names of local groups mobilizing around this issue, we would be honored to amplify their calls to action in the Checklist. Please reach out to me through the AoCC Contact page. – Jen Hofmann

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