Telling your story on Capitol Hill and building relationships with lawmakers are important strategies to accelerate new treatments and find a cure. Taking place virtually this year, the Parkinson’s Policy Forum is a time to unite members of the community and connect with legislators.
On Monday, March 22 through Thursday, March 25, 2021, this free virtual event brought together community members and researchers from across the country for research updates, policy briefings, advocacy trainings and networking opportunities. Learn more in our blog.
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This year, the Parkinson’s Policy Forum will be hosted on the online platform 6Connex, which allows you to enter a virtual environment similar to an in-person event with opportunities to attend live sessions, view content, interact with others and explore booths. Check out our guide for tips on using the platform as well as answers to common questions about the Forum, advocacy and March 25 Hill Day.
During the Parkinson’s Policy Forum, we will recognize outstanding individuals or groups who advocate on behalf of the Parkinson’s community. The window for award nominations has closed. The award ceremony will take place on Tuesday, March 23 at 4 p.m. ET.
Awards will be given to advocates who:
- Engage with legislators and their staff throughout the year to build ongoing relationships.
- Effectively engage with legislators and the Parkinson’s community on social media.
- Work at the state and local level to pursue Parkinson’s policy.
- Network and recruit additional advocates.
This year, Researcher Hill Day will be part of the Parkinson’s Policy Forum. We invite Parkinson’s researchers to take part in the public policy process and educate Congress on the importance of biomedical research funding. There will be opportunities throughout the Forum to learn how to shape your research story for Capitol Hill. (Learn about the 50 researchers that made a difference during last year's Researcher Hill Day.)
On Thursday, March 25, more than 200 Parkinson’s advocates met with their members of Congress to ask for an increase in federal funding for the Parkinson’s Research Program at the Department of Defense. Research at the Department of Defense helps scientists better understand what can cause Parkinson’s disease. This is important work, and we need Congress to provide more money to this program so we can get closer to a cure.
And you can help amplify this important request from the comfort of your own home! Email your legislators now and ask them to invest in Parkinson's research.
This spring and summer, members of Congress will have some long periods of time when they are back home. And depending on where we are with COVID-19 by then, members of Congress may be able to have in-person meetings or town hall events you can attend. If you sign up to receive our policy updates, we will provide easy ways for you to reach out to your Representative and Senators to let them know what is important to the Parkinson’s community. We would love to have you add your voice to ours and the thousands of other Parkinson’s advocates across America. For more information on how to build relationships with members of Congress, please check out our toolkit.
Any time is a good time to engage in advocacy! In fact, here is something you can do right now:
Congress soon will be drafting broad health care legislation. Please ask them to help people with Parkinson’s have the opportunity to better manage the financial impact of paying for Parkinson’s medications. This means we need Congress to include provisions for an out-of-pocket cap for Medicare Part D, along with a way to spread payments across the calendar year.