How to Tell Your Story

Elected officials need to hear from the people in their districts. They can’t be experts on everything, so it’s incumbent on us to help them understand the issues facing Maryland hospitals. Visit the Maryland General Assembly website to find the contact information for your elected officials. You can lookup your representatives by searching your address and zip code. Please note that you may have a different representative for your hospital from your home.

There are several ways to communicate with your legislators, including calling or emailing, visiting with them virtually, or attending meetings in the district (likely virtual). Don’t forget, legislators are just like you—they have families and jobs and volunteer at local organizations.

Fredrick-Memorial-Hospital


Communicate by Calling

The following script illustrates how to correspond by phone with members of the Maryland General Assembly’s staff. When you are asked to call regarding specific pieces of legislation, the Maryland Hospital Association can provide you with the necessary details and a sample script.

Note: It is critical to build good relationships and communicate effectively with legislative staff—the people who support lawmakers—as they brief elected officials about an issue and advise on what their position should be.

Hello, I am a constituent of [insert legislator’s name] and would like to make a comment to Senator/Delegate [insert name] about [name the bill or the specific issue].

My name is [insert name], and I live at [full address] and work at [if hospital employee, name the hospital]. I’m calling to urge Senator/ Delegate [insert legislator’s name] to support/oppose [name of the bill or the specific issue and brief explanation if needed] because [briefly tell your personal story].

Please send a response to me by email at [your email address] or by phone at [insert phone number]. Thank you so much for your time.

Communicate by Emailing

Why write an advocacy letter? To encourage (or discourage) a specific action or outcome on an issue that is important to you and your community. We have provided sample letters for specific legislation to correspond with members of the Maryland General Assembly. You can choose your desired topic, fill in your personal information, and email it to the appropriate person. Contact us at mha@mhaonline.org for questions or assistance.


Attending A Committee Hearing or Briefing

This year, the House and Senate are implementing new procedures for a nearly all virtual session of the Maryland General Assembly. Guidelines will continue to evolve as the leadership follows the COVID-19 pandemic.

All committee hearings will be held virtually for the public in both the House and Senate. Because of the unusual nature of floor proceedings this year (floor proceedings will be limited to two hours at a time), the timing of hearings will be flexible. The leadership has committed to providing the public as much notice as possible. The House, specifically, has said committee chairs will provide the public at least 48 hours notice as to the bills that will be heard during the hearing.

In addition, live testimony will likely be limited for every bill, but the General Assembly has made available the opportunity for the public to submit written testimony online.

If MHA, or your hospital, asks you to join a briefing or hearing, they will provide you with the logistics.


Watch A Committee Hearing Online

Marylanders can watch the committee hearings online. To watch, go to mgaleg.maryland.gov, then scroll down to “Today’s Calendar.” Click on “Committee Meetings” for either the House or the Senate, and then click on the appropriate committee. Next to the name of the hearing, click on the camera icon and the hearing video feed should pop up.