Write a letter to a decision maker, to accompany your fact sheet, to advocate for a specific change related to the social problem of your choosing.
In the letter, you should identify yourself as a social work student, and thus the letter should reflect the quality we expect in the academic work of our students. Be sure it is properly written and spell checked. The letter should be 3-5 paragraphs in length (1-2 pages), include appropriate salutations, an introduction, a brief overview of the problem (including the most compelling facts from your research), your own concerns about the issue and how it impacts the community, and a specific request for the decision maker to act to improve the problem. End the letter with a respectful and appropriate closing and signoff.
Please keep in mind that you don’t have to present yourself as an expert. One of the purposes of advocacy letters is to ask questions, raise problems, and discuss issues. The choice of elected official or public official (an unelected employee usually in a position related to public policy) should be appropriate for the nature of the topic about which you are writing. Please think about whether the issue you are raising is relevant to Congress, the State or the Local Government, and choose who you are writing accordingly. There are many websites to help you identify your local, state, and national congressional representatives, and additional information will be provided by the instructor.
Grading of the Advocacy Letter:
The Rubric for the Advocacy Letter is:
* Writing: Well-written, proofread, spell-checked. 2 points
* Appearance: Properly formatted letter, including appropriate heading and salutation. 2 points
* Effective Advocacy: The letter makes a compelling case as to why the decision maker should focus on this problem, and provides an actionable recommendation to improve the problem. 3 points
* Well researched: The letter is based on relevant facts not just opinions. 3 points
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