Giving testimony on climate change is easy, effective advocacy

Giving testimony on climate change is easy, effective advocacy

April 8, 2024

By Cynthia Linton

A good way to influence public officials is to talk to them. With boards, commissions, and departments, that would mean testifying or making public comment. Our members have spoken and written to the EPA, CTA, RTA, Pace Bus and village boards, among others. If you haven’t yet used your voice and expressed your power to your representatives, we encourage you to give it a try.

It’s not hard if you follow a few simple tips:

  • Write it out so you can read it.
  • Tell a personal story at the start.
  • Keep your remarks under the time allowance.
  • Use some facts, but don’t fill it with facts.
  • Focus on one aspect of the issue.
  • Write like you would say it: short words, short sentences.
  • Pause and speak emphatically when making a strong point.
  • At the end, make an ask.
  • Be sure to thank them at the start or end for the opportunity to speak.

To give you a taste, take a look at public statements made by two of our members, Viktor Köves and Cynthia Linton, at the April 3 Chicago City Council hearing on the Clean and Affordable Buildings Ordinance.

If you want help in framing a statement, contact Cynthia.

Cynthia Linton

Cynthia is Communications Chair of the chapter and a former Chapter Chair. She’s a retired journalist and journalism teacher, who has been a climate activist since 2007.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *