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Be a Legislative Advocate

The MDSC works to address policy issues affecting people with Down syndrome. We believe the most effective legislative advocacy is accomplished by individual voters bringing up issues that matter to them with their state or federal representatives.

Executive Director Maureen Gallagher and Self-Advocate leader John Anton at the State House.

Executive Director Maureen Gallagher and Government Affairs Committee member John Anton at the State House.

Here's how you can be a legislative advocate:

Advocacy Day

Our Advocacy Day, established in 2014, has been central to bringing our priority bills to the attention of State House leaders and garnering their support. Join us in raising awareness with your legislators about our priority bills as well as critical funding needs. For more information on Advocacy Day, click here.

Contact Your Representative

The late Massachusetts politician Tip O’Neill famously said that “all politics is local.” Indeed, we at the MDSC understand that the most effective method for getting our bills made into law is for you to reach out to your local state representatives and senators. We encourage our members to call, write, and set up meetings to introduce yourselves and your families to your legislators. Share your story and let them know what you care about and how they should vote. Even a single call from a single constituent can easily put a bill on a legislator’s radar that wasn’t before, transforming disinterest into advocacy.

To find your legislator, go here.  

Join/Contact the Government Affairs Committee

The primary vehicle for the MDSC’s public policy initiatives is our Government Affairs Committee. The Committee works with the MDSC Executive Director, management team, and the MDSC membership to advocate for legislation and policies that will help the MDSC achieve its mission. With broad statewide representation, the Committee’s primary objective is to mobilize the MDSC membership to advocate on behalf of the entire Down syndrome community.

The Committee appreciates your feedback, and we are often looking for new members. Contact us at timetospeakout@mdsc.org.

Sign Up for our Email List

To receive updates on our legislative progress and alerts during critical moments to reach out to representatives, join our email list here.

NDSS Buddy Walk on Washington

Each year, the MDSC assembles a delegation of advocates to represent the MDSC at the Annual Buddy Walk on Washington, a two day advocacy event in Washington, DC. The MDSC is joined by hundreds of other Down syndrome advocates from across the country to visit the Congressional leaders on Capitol Hill.

If you would like to learn more about attending the Buddy Walk on Washington, click here.

Statehouse Information

We encourage our members to visit the Massachusetts State House to meet with their representatives. The State House can sometimes be challenging to navigate– click here for guidelines and a map of the area.