The NPCA and its local affiliate groups, such as RPCV-NJ – advocate on behalf of the Peace Corps. Our local members attend trainings, visit members of Congress, and share information. Our local advocacy coordinator is Joanne Brandwood (pictured below on the left) – you can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Report on Day of Action, February 27, 2014
In Washington, three members of RPCV-NJ joined a hundred RPCVs from other states to visit members of Congress and advocate for the Peace Corps and issues of concern to RPCVs. Working with National Peace Corps Association’s advocacy co-ordinator, Jonathan Pearson, your delegates Barbara Lences, Sharon Keld, and Rowland Bennett called on eight of New Jersey’s Senators and Representatives in their offices. In most cases, appointments were with legislative assistants who listened carefully to the talking points and issues.
It was impressive that Representatives Leonard Lance (7th Congressional District) and Rush Holt (12th Congressional District) met in person with NJ’s delegates. Mr. Lance said he had never had a constituent speak to him about Peace Corps issues and readily agreed to join the new House Peace Corps Caucus and support our other issues. All along Dr. Holt has staunchly supported the Peace Corps and, by virtue of his seat on the House Natural Resources Committee, was helpful in getting permissive legislation through Congress that will lead eventually to a Peace Corps Memorial on the National Mall. Holt has decided not to run for another term; Peace Corps will loose this dependable advocate at the close of the 113th Congress.
The delegation met with Daniel Smith, a legislative aide to New Jersey’s new Senator, Cory A. Booker, who occupies the seat held by Frank Lautenberg until his death last year. Senators Menendez and Lautenberg have both been dependable supporters. We expect Mr. Booker will follow that tradition.
Next year’s Day of Advocacy is scheduled for Thursday, February 26th, 2015. Save that date.