Engage Policymakers Through Email

Email is a fast and easy way to reach your local policymakers. Use this idea to rally your play committee around an email campaign! More emails mean more voices, and let’s be honest, to a policymaker it means more votes.

Read a sample letter.

Here are a few helpful hints to guide you and your play committee through writing an email to your representatives.

Email rules

Generally, the rules for email are the same as for a handwritten letter:

  • Use the correct form of address.

  • Identify yourself. If you are writing as a member of your community, schoolteacher, parks and recreation official, friend, college administrator, say so.

  • State why you are coming forward. Let your elected officials know you believe in the importance of unstructured play across your community. Example: You believe that play is a right of all children.

  • Be specific. Cite a bill number or other identifying information. Give examples. If budget cuts have forced your community to not maintain playgrounds or build new ones, say so.

Ways to Communicate

  • Write from the heart. Avoid clichés. Form letters that look like they’re a part of an organized pressure campaign don’t have as much impact as a personal letter.

  • Focus on the people who depend on playspaces: kids! Include stories or examples of how playspaces make a difference in children’s lives. Include links to relevant studies if possible.

  • Be brief. A shorter email is easier to read, and more likely to be read.

  • Be sure to include your name, mailing address, and telephone number in the email.

  • Be strategic. Know the budget cycles for various governing bodies. Send emails early to maximize their impact.

"Pausing to listen to an airplane in the sky, stooping to watch a ladybug on a plant, sitting on a rock to watch the waves crash over the quayside—children have their own agendas and timescales. As they find out more about their world and their place in it, they work hard not to let adults hurry them. We need to hear their voices."

Cathy Nutbrown, contemporary British educational theorist