Advocacy has been and always will be a critical part of the ARA mission for its members. With 2020 hitting us all in different ways, it was an eye-opening year in the world of advocacy when it comes to the rental industry. We learned many things over the last year, but one of the most important is the significance of a membership engaged with legislative work.
As a government affairs team within ARA, we have the platform and connections to represent our association and our industry, but we always need more power from the people. We can’t make as big of a difference in legislative conversations without you, our members, telling your stories and showing those in our government how essential rental truly is.
The path to being a well-informed and engaged advocate for our industry requires consistent work and dedication.
Here are 6 ways you can become an advocate for our industry:
1. Don’t fret about politics.
Being an advocate means being there to share your voice and opinion, no matter who sits in what seat at the county board, in the state capitol, or in Congress. No matter whether you agree with their politics or not, you have the right to voice your concerns and advocate for and against matters that concern you.
2. “Know ‘em before you need ‘em”
Know who your local, state, and federal representatives are and be in contact with them. Visit ARAVotes.com to find out who your representatives are and how to get in touch with them.
3. Be informed.
Staying current with what’s going on at the local, state, and national levels will help you be prepared to relay how issues affect your business and community. You can do this by staying up to date with trusted news sources, through weekly updates on ARAvotes.com, and by attending your state and local chapter meetings to see what’s happening in your rental community.
4. Join and support ARAPAC.
ARAPAC is ARA’s Political Action Committee, and your ARA membership makes you eligible to join. ARAPAC membership is free and allows us to share exclusive information with you on what is happening in Washington D.C. that could impact the equipment and event rental industry. By joining ARAPAC, you’ll be invited to participate in caucus in Washington D.C., and receive access to the ARAPAC newsletter, Facebook discussion group, and fundraisers throughout the year.
5. Be truthful.
Fudging the truth will only come back to bite you and the causes you care about. Always tell the truth when speaking with lawmakers and seek to develop a relationship and rapport with them so they know they can trust you. This will make difficult conversations on important issues easier in the long run and will reflect positively on the industry as a whole.
6. Be passionate, enthusiastic, assertive, and persistent.
Those in elected office need to hear your story, and realize how the decisions they make impact you, your business, your family, and community.
We are stronger together and every member strengthens our voice in D.C. These tips are here to help start your advocacy journey, and we’re here to support you along the way. The more we work together, the more we can accomplish for the betterment of our industry.