Alert: Ask Your U.S. Rep to Support Adult Education Funding in FY2015!
Ask Your U.S. Representative to Sign the Roe-Hinojosa Dear Colleague Letter
Issue: Right now, Congress is making decisions on federal spending levels for FY 2015. Members of the House of Representatives have been asked by Congressman Kingston, Chair of the Labor HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee, to submit their funding priorities for FY201. Will adult education be on your U.S. Representative’s list? House Adult Literacy Caucus Co-chairs Phil Roe (R-TN) and Ruben Hinojosa (D-TX) want to make sure that adult education is a funding priority for every House Member. They are sponsoring a bipartisan “Dear Colleague” sign-on letter that your U.S. Representative can sign, making it easier for all House Members to prioritize adult education funding for FY2015. Ask your U.S. Representative to sign on today!
Call YOUR U.S. Representative’s office (click here for the #). Ask for the staff person who handles education issues*.
Ask: “Please ask the Congressman to sign the Roe-Hinojosa Dear Colleague letter in support of funding for adult education in FY2015.”
Offer to send the staffer a copy of the letter, which you can find here:Copy of Letter
** NOTE: If Congressman Roe or Hinojosa is your U.S. Representative, call to thank him for cosponsoring this Dear Colleague Letter supporting adult education funding.
Phone Numbers:Click here and enter your zip code in the box to quickly find your U.S. Representative’s phone number.
Suggested Talking Points (optional):
Federal funding for adult education, which currently serves fewer than 2 million of the 36 million who could benefit from services, has decreased in real terms by 17% in the last decade not including the devastating impact of sequestration (CLASP, 2013).
While many workforce and education programs had their FY14 funding restored above the dangerous post-sequester levels, federal funding for adult education remained unchanged. No funds taken through sequestration in FY13 were restored in FY14.
Adult education is key to our state’s economic success. Nationally, adults without a high school diploma are nearly twice as likely to be unemployed than adults with some college (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2013).
Fact Sheets You Could Email to Them in Follow Up to Your Call:
The alert request is for you to contact your U.S. Representative asking him or her to sign on to the Roe-Hinojosa Dear Colleague Letter in support of adult education funding.
It is not for practitioners to sign on. Please do not contact Congressman Roe’s office to sign your own name to the letter.
So what is a “Dear Colleague” letter, anyway?
A dear colleague is an "in-house" method for Congressional Members to communicate with other Members of Congress. It has multiple uses, such as:
encouraging them to sign joint letters in support of a particular bill;
asking them to cosponsor legislation;
encouraging their support for a floor amendment; or
sharing information from their district, such as a news article or an event.
In general, co-sponsoring or signing on to a Dear Colleague letter for adult education appropriations is an example of how your legislator can be proactive and protect adult education funding for the next fiscal year.
If your House Member cannot sign on for whatever reason, you might encourage him or her to support adult education in other ways, such as in conversations with other Members of Congress or appropriations committee staff. Or by joining the House Adult Literacy Caucus. Send them this invitation to join.
For more information on the Roe-Hinojosa Dear Colleague Action Alert, visit NCL's blog where we are posting live updates.