PAWS Magazine

Issue 44, Winter 2000

Get active for the animals!

Every day PAWS advocates in the Advocacy department are working hard to end animal cruelty and suffering and enrich the lives of the animals of Washington state. The PAWS advocates are a powerful force working on behalf of the animals. But the true, untapped power of PAWS is the 40,000 members and supporters who can help the animals in very simple ways.

With the power of e-mail or the telephone, PAWS advocates have many vehicles for people to get involved and make a difference for the animals.

Legislative e-mail response network

The PAWS legislative e-mail response network gets activated every time that the Washington state legislature goes into session. PAWS Advocate Stephanie Jones sends out periodic e-mail messages to the list members encouraging them to call or write their legislators on specific issues. Many legislators in Olympia tend to see PAWS as a "Seattle" organization, and it the legislative response network helps them realize that PAWS has more members outside of Seattle that it does within. "A personal phone call from a constituent in their own is very influential on the mind of most legislators," said Jones.

PAWS Actionline

PAWS advocate Jennifer Hillman writes the weekly e-mail PAWS Actionline. Every Monday afternoon Actionline subscribers receive Hillman’s brief list of three or four issues of concern which need immediate action. The action might be calling the prosecutors office in a rural county where he or she is wavering on a decision to prosecute an animal-cruelty case, or it might be an encouragement to write a letter to the Seattle Times in support of the proposed ban on exotic animals in circuses. Hillman works hard to make sure that her suggestions are simple, and easily accomplished in a few minutes.

On-call volunteers

Throughout its history, PAWS has found information leafleting, picketing, and other forms of non-violent direct action tremendously effective. But there is nothing sadder and more forlorn than the site of two or three animal advocates on the steps of a building trying to raise awareness; and there are few things more energizing that 10 or 20 animal advocates doing the same thing.

The PAWS Advocacy department needs a dedicated core of volunteers willing to participate. The events might range from handing out bananas to Washington state dentists, encouraging them to ask their colleague Dr. Fleege to find a new home for his capuchin monkey, to walking dogs in front of the Korean consulate, encouraging the Korean legislature to think of dogs as friends and not food (and defeat the proposed bill to classify them as livestock).

Let PAWS know that you want to help

Call or e-mail Cindy Raven, Advocacy Office Coordinator, and let her know that you want to get involved. If you e-mail Cindy, she will include you on both e-mail network lists. You can request to be taken off the networks at anytime. Cindy can be reached at (425) 787-2500 extension 810, or by e-mail at cindyr@paws.org.

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