Lobby Week 2009 a Huge Success
This week, NFFE-IAM members from across the nation packed into the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. for four days of networking, speeches, and political activism.
Throughout the conference, NFFE members heard speeches from key figures in Congress and Labor, all the while lobbying their elected officials on the issues that affect them as federal employees.
In his keynote address, IAMAW International President R. Thomas Buffenbarger struck an optimistic tone, focusing on the opportunity for positive change presented by the Presidential and Congressional elections last November.
“What a difference a year makes,” said Buffenbarger. “You are here with a President that wants to lead you forward, not backward.”
Stressing the importance of holding worker-friendly majorities in the House and Senate as well as in the White House, NFFE National President Richard N. Brown urged members to make the most of their time in Washington by lobbying at every opportunity.
“You did not come all of the way to our nation’s capital to take no for an answer,” said Brown. “We put our elected officials in office to serve us, and over the course of this week it’s our job to hold them accountable.”
Breaking in the afternoons to lobby Congress, NFFE members eagerly took the federal employee message to Capitol Hill, discussing issues such as NSPS, pay parity, and paid parental leave. Attending as many as four separate appointments per day in some cases, our brothers and sisters lobbied dozens of Congressional representatives throughout the conference.
“Thank you to everyone who took time away from their jobs and families to participate in Lobby Week this year,” said Brown.
In attendance this week were key political leaders such as Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA), Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD), Rep. Norm Dicks (D-WA), Rep. George Miller (D-CA), and Rep. Bob Filner (D-CA), among others.