This OTYCD entry originally posted in May 2017.
Bookmark a tool by OurStates that shows you what new laws your state might be making in six key areas: immigration, policing and protest, reproductive justice, voting rights, LGBTQ equality, and economic justice.
State legislators aren’t just the equivalent of the farm teams for the Democratic and Republican parties–they’re the farm teams for federal laws, too. Well-funded right-wing activist groups have attempted to pass weird, extreme laws on the state level before trying to get Congress to bite.
While there are web-based tools that show what your state legislature is doing overall right now, and tools that show what bills the states are considering on a single issue, there aren’t many that show what all 50 states are doing on more than one issue.
In fact, what OurStates built might stand alone. It’s a project of StayWoke, a 501(c)4 organization devoted to pursuing justice and equality. Its planning team includes DeRay Mckesson, Samuel Sinyangwe, Brittany Packnett, and a whole host of smart, perceptive people who you’d be smart to follow on Twitter.
When you click on a category, it colors the U.S. map accordingly: States colored red are working on harmful laws; blue states are creating good laws; and grey states are not currently chasing anything on that topic.
Click on your state, and you’ll open a window that shows you everything it is doing on all six topics. It will describe the law and tell you if the bills are good or bad, as well as which party controls the legislature, what the law would do, and how close the bill is to becoming law.
If you scroll down, the OurStates page will give you a link through which you can find your state legislators’ contact information, as well as advice on how to speak with them.
See and use the nifty tool built by OurStates:
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