Hill Day: SfN Members Advocate for Science Funding
For a decade, neuroscientists have visited members of Congress each year during SfN’s Capitol Hill Day to express their support for U.S. science funding. Last year, 52 SfN members from 20 states met with 71 congressional offices to discuss the latest advances in the field of neuroscience, share the economic and public health benefits of investment in biomedical research, and make the case for strong national investment in scientific research through NIH and NSF. This year, the tradition will continue on March 23.
Anatomy of a Hill Day
SfN makes it easy for even a first-time advocate to contribute to Hill Day. The event begins the night before with a reception and training session at SfN headquarters. Participants hear from notable speakers — previous years featured Thomas Insel, director of the National Institute of Mental Health; Story Landis, then-director of the National Institute for Neurological Disorders and Stroke; and Nora Volkow, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. Participants then gather in groups and learn how to conduct a meeting with legislators.
On Hill Day, groups of three to five SfN members, along with a staff guide, meet with representatives, senators, and their staff, visiting up to six offices in one day. During the meetings, the participants, who come from all career stages, relay personal stories and share vital information about the state of funding for NIH and NSF.
Advocate From Home
If you are unable to come to Washington, DC, you can still take action. Members of Congress increasingly use social media to communicate with their constituents. Calling your legislator is also a fast and easy way to communicate your position on an issue. To find your federal legislators’ contact information, go to SfN’s Action Center and enter your zip code into the designated box.