|Updated Frequently Asked Questions about Calling Congress|
What is a Congressional Call? A (typically) 30-90 second call to your Member of Congress's offices (for a directory, click here or call 202-224-3121 ) to express support
for a specific bill or other action that you want them to take.
Why is SOA Watch so passionate about individuals calling their Congressional representatives? Several SOA Watch activists have worked inside congressional offices and we have seen firsthand the impact these calls have. Political offices tally every single call they receive and a weekly summary of calls is given to the political representative. Anyone making a 30-second Congressional call can get the issues or a specific bill noticed by their Congressional leader.
Do I need to be an expert on politics or the issue to call? Nope. You're a citizen telling the people elected to represent you back in Washington, D.C. that human rights in Latin America are important to you. The job of the person answering the phone (usually an intern) is simply to take down your information. You won't be quizzed. At most, they might ask for your address or zipcode to verify that you live in the Congressional leaders district.
What do I say? "I'm an SOA Watch supporter and a consituent and I would like to see my Representative co-sponsor [insert specific action taken here]." That's all there is to it. Who do I call? Call the office of your U.S. Representative who represent your area, and ask for their Foreign Policy Aide for Latin American issues. How often should I call? We recommend calling every week.
What tips do you have for getting in the habit of calling every week? Put your congressional representative in your cellphone and pick a set day and day to do it each week (ie. Monday evening while sitting in traffic on the way home).
Can I call when the office is closed? Yes. Simply leave a leave a message on the general voicemail. The messages are checked each morning and your call will still be tallied in the memo.
Who's eligible to call? Anyone who is living in the United States can call congress.
Do you have to be 18 or older? No. We've seen 1st grade students call.
5525 Illinois Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20011