As legislative sessions begin to wrap up in many states, our affiliates have a lot to celebrate. From passing innovative legislation to demystifying the legislative process, Alliance organizations have done what they do best, center young people’s voices so that our laws better reflect our values. Check out the latest and greatest from our crews:
New Era Colorado
Paying back student loans can be confusing and intimidating. That process just got a whole lot easier in Colorado thanks to New Era. New Era ended the legislative session with a bang as their bill, the Student Loan Servicer Accountability Act, passed and was signed into law! This law requires student loan servicers to make the repayment process fair and transparent for borrowers. This law would also create a permanent watchdog in the Colorado Attorney General’s office whose job is to protect student borrowers and investigate claims against student loan servicers. New Era rallied young people to submit over 1,500 comment cards, make hundreds of calls to legislators, and share testimonies to pass this crucial legislation.
In addition, New Era threw down for democracy reform. They helped pass two pieces of legislation to expand voting access in Colorado. New Era supported the Colorado Votes Act which adds in-person polling centers and drop boxes at most universities and community colleges. It also allows 17-year-olds to vote in primaries if they turn 18 by the general election. New Era also sent young people to testify in support of legislation that simplifies and expands the current Automatic Voter Registration system to reach more people. Congrats, New Era!
Understanding the ins and outs of your state’s legislature can be a struggle and feel inaccessible at times, so Forward Montana was on a mission this year to change that with their weekly legislative newsletter, “What the Helena.” Each week, they explained key legislation moving through the legislature and how young people could take action, which they did! Forward Montana mobilized young people to call their legislators, share their personal stories, and show up at the Capitol to urge legislators to pass important legislation like Medicaid Expansion and student debt assistance for young farmers and ranchers. You go, Forward Montana!
Georgia Shift was spilling all the tea about what goes on at the Capitol. From their weekly newsletters called “Gold Dome Tea” to their Instagram TV Channel “Tea Time With Brian”,Georgia Shift kept young people up to date on all the piping hot issues in the state legislature. In addition to keeping folks informed, Georgia Shift hosted “Mujeres Day at the Capitol: Georgia Advocacy Day for Women” and “Do or Die: Young People’s Day of Change” to ensure state legislators listen directly to young people about the issues they care about most.
And now for some exciting news from the Alliance national team…
We are excited to introduce our brand new Senior Director of Communications, Carmel Pryor! Carmel is a creative social advocate and communications strategist with over 10 years’ experience in the civic sector. From her time at Metro TeenAIDS designing social marketing campaigns to combat HIV among youth in DC to creating digital media tools to help refugees resettle in the U.S. with the International Rescue Committee, she has dedicated her career to ensuring people’s stories are told and marginalized communities are given the tools to create their own agency.
In this role, Carmel will lead the Alliance’s comprehensive communications strategy, lift up the bold work of young people nationwide through storytelling, and work with the Alliance’s incredible network to build communications capacity and strategy. Now, with Carmel and Daniela, the Alliance has a rockin’ Communications Team!
Stay tuned for more legislative updates from the Alliance network. And make sure to check out our Weekly Round-Ups on Instagram every Friday to catch the latest events and actions from the field.