CONTACT THE MEDIA

The fastest way to grow our movement from the ground up

Some things to think about

Quick tips before you talk to the press

We are so thrilled you’re here.  This is the best way to make sure your voice is really heard.  Speaking to the press brings the cause to other people’s attention and hopefully inspires them to join you in action.  There is also a chance your Senator will directly see or hear your testimony! You can go one of two routes here:

 

You can  pitch your story to a reporter to cover or you can write a Letter to the editor.

 

Here is some guidance for pitching your story:

Guidance for Pitching a story

Think Local.

Senators care how they are perceived by the people in their states (because those are the people who vote for them and also because they’re probably a little vain).

 

Reach out to your local newspaper and TV and radio stations.  Also consider local online presence like web newspapers and even prominent bloggers or businesses in your area.  The more people you pitch, the more likely your story will be covered.

 

Don’t know who your local media is?  Google “______ area newspaper” or similar for other sources.  Also consider any sources you personally consume every day.

How do I reach out?

Most news outlets will have a "Contact Us" page.  If it’s not in an obvious place on their website, check the footer at the bottom.  On their Contact Us page you probably either find:

  • An email address you can submit to.  Great!  Easy!  

  • A submission form.  Also easy!

  • A list of email addresses for different topics. 

    • For this, just make sure you find the most relevant contact and send to them. Do NOT send your email to more than 2 reporters from the same site. It is recommended to just send to one reporter plus a general tip or editorial email.

What do I say?

The most important aspect to emphasize ia how the story is relevant to the news outlet and why they should cover it.

Your pitch email should include:

  • Reasons on why your story is relevant to the news outlet

  • The main points of your story.  This doesn’t need to be long, just the main points.  They will write the story, not you, so all you need to cover are the big points (more tips on this below)

  • Your contact information

  • Links to your campaign (feel free to include ExtendPUA.org)

  • Links to any previous news coverage

A few Tips for How to Tell Your Story with a Structure

  • Start with your personal story or situation.  Try to be specific and honest.  And keep it short!  

  • Move into how your story fits into the bigger picture.  Is your whole industry frozen?  Are there other people in your same situation?  There are over 30 million of us in this together, after all.

  • Why is this important right now?  Because in just a few weeks, over 30 million people are about to lose the $600/week they are surviving on.

  • Please feel free to use any of our talking points that help you with your pitch.

**We think it is critical for everyone to know about this issue AND for them to take action, which is why we created this resource. Please make sure to mention that people can find more information and ways to help at ExtendPUA.org**

Need more help?  Reach out to us.

 

writing a Letter to the editor

Quick tips for getting it to the right spot

If you want to write a LTE, go local:

 

Most news outlets will have a "Contact Us" page.  If it’s not in an obvious place on their website, check the footer at the bottom.  On their "Contact Us" page they should list either a general submissions email or a specific Letter to the Editor email address.

**We think it is critical for everyone to know about this issue AND for them to take action, which is why we created this resource. Please make sure to mention that people can find more information and ways to help at ExtendPUA.org**

Here's a template for those who want to write about unemployment and the FPUC, make by a member of our team, to get you started.  If you are looking to write about another topic and need help, reach out to us!

Notes:

[to be personalized]

  • State-by-state weekly unemployment payout, living wage & unemployment numbers [$xxx] here

Letter Draft:

 

To The Editor:

 

I am one of the over 30 million hard-working, unemployed Americans left to struggle after the federal $600 weekly supplement (FPUC) expired in July, and I am unable to return a job that doesn’t exist.

 

Here in [State], [XXX,XXX] of us are out of work due to COVID-19. The average weekly unemployment payout is [$xxx], before taxes, which is [$xxx] below the weekly living wage. This is nowhere near enough to cover rent, health insurance, groceries, and utilities. [Tell your story here.] Why don’t our lawmakers in Washington care?

 

This isn’t a normal downturn. There are 13 million fewer jobs than there were pre-pandemic. Lost jobs will not even begin to come back until the pandemic is under control - and with over 5.5 million cases and counting, the U.S. is not remotely close to recovering. Traditional Unemployment Insurance was designed to help people between jobs, not to fund the fallout from an ongoing nationwide crisis. Before it expired, FPUC helped keep 10 million Americans out of poverty. So-called “skinny” bills, offering less than the original FPUC $600, are not enough to address the severity of this situation.  The President's memoranda does not meet our needs. We need Congress and the White House to return to negotiations and pass a real solution immediately.   [Insert your Senators and Representatives names here] must [continue?] to advocate for the extension of FPUC at the full $600, and no less and they must do it with loudly and with urgency. 

We, as a community, also must come together and advocate for all people's needs during this time and we need our leaders to join us. We must demand negotiations continue with urgency until a comprehensive pandemic relief bill, with a focus on The People, is passed.  Millions of us are in incredibly desperate situations. We MUST expand FPUC at the full $600 until the pandemic is over, expand PUA to those currently excluded, support state agencies to pay out backlogged claims and fund extremely necessary social support programs, and provide: hazard pay and protections for front-line workers, healthcare relief for all, rent and mortgage relief, and long term small-business and venue support.

We also must come together as a community and advocate for all people's need during this time.  

Join us at ExtendPUA.org.

 

Signed,

[Name, City, State]

Need more help?  Reach out to us.

 

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ExtendPUA.org is not a source of legal advice or counsel. All information contained on ExtendPUA.org is for educational purposes. ExtendPUA is a volunteer run organization. Where specific facts are referenced, every effort has been made to verify the accuracy and truthfulness of the information presented. Occasionally our information will become out of date because of the rapidly evolving nature of the movement. If you spot something out of place, please contact us at Info@ExtendPUA.org.