FOLA LOBBY DAY 2023
Registration closed // event passed
POST LOBBY DAY REPORT COMING SOON
What are Lobby Days? Lobby Days are commonly used by non-profits and professional organizations as opportunities to set aside a day to meet with elected members and political staff to raise awareness of their issued.
LOBBY DAY PREPERATION
All above events were recorded and recordings were made available to all registrants.
Approximately participants also held individual meetings with their own MPP.
Why is meeting with your MPP important? Click here
Prepare for your meetings: learn more!
If you have any questions, please email Katie at email@example.com
MEDIA RELSEASE (2023)
9:00am: Log on and Welcome, FOLA Chair and FOLA ED
9:30am: NDP AG Critic Forum with Kristyn Wong-Tam, MPP (Toronto Centre)
10:00am: Legal Aid Roundtable (with Anthony Galea, Senior Policy Advisor, MAG)
10:45am: Family Law Roundtable (with Anthony Galea, Senior Policy Advisor, MAG)
11:30am: Courthouse Issues/Courthouse Modernization (with Karthi Gobinath, Director of Policy, MAG)
12:00pm: Parliamentary Assistant to the Treasury Board President, Todd McCarthy, MPP (Durham)
12:30pm: Mini Session with the Minister for Francophone Affairs, Hon Caroline Mulroney, MPP (York Simcoe) *NOTE: this session will be in French and will take place via Teams
12:45pm: Real Estate Law Roundtable (with Karthi Gobinath, Director of Policy, MAG, Anthony Galea, Senior Policy Advisor, MAG, & Miles White, Senior Policy Advisor, MOF
1:30pm: Criminal Law & Bail Reform (with Peter Copeland, Director of Policy & Stakeholder Relations, SOLGEN & Karthi Gobinath, Director of Policy, MAG)
3:30pm: Attorney General of Ontario, Minister Doug Downey, MPP (Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte)
4:30pm: Wrap Up with reports from all Roundtable Chairs
*Throughout the day, there will also be one-on-one meetings with attendee MPPs.
Meeting with MPPs and their staff is one of the most critical advocacy activities available.
MPPs will assume that for every person they meet with, receive a telephone call or a letter from, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of others with the same view who have not taken the time to contact them.
MPPs often compare notes about constituent meetings and will identify where there is widespread support across the province for specific initiatives and positions.
If you ask an MPP a question that they don’t have the answer to, they’ll generally ask the central party staff to research and prepare an answer. This makes the wider organization aware of the issue you’re raising.
Meeting with MPPs gives you a chance to listen to their challenges and concerns, and be able to adapt your messages to take these into consideration.
In the case of justice policy, which impacts almost every person at some point in their lives, meeting with an MPP face-to-face gives you an opportunity to provide professional anecdotes from the front lines.
All Roundtable meetings will be with Ministers' senior staff. These are the people who can best address and follow up on your key issues are a direct line to the Minister. These meetings serve as your best opportunity to drill down into the weeds on your concerns.
(About FOLA and Law Associations)
FOLA will be offering free training to all those registered for Lobby Day 2022. This training will include tips on how to best talk to Queen's Park staff.
We encourage all those who register attend in person but the event will be recorded and distributed to those registered. It will NOT be available for wider distribution.
MEDIA PREP SHEETS
THE COMPELLING NARRATIVE CREATOR
THE COMPELLING NARRATIVE CREATOR – NEGATIVE NEWS
Before you speak with someone from the media, take a moment to fill out one of the two one-pagers (above) to help ensure you know your messaging and issues.
On February 23, 2022, approximately 40 lawyers from Law Associations across Ontario logged onto Zoom for a full day of meetings as part of FOLA’s Virtual Lobby Day. We hosted a series of Open Forums with the Honorable Doug Downey, Ontario’s Attorney General and MPP for Barrie—Springwater—Oro-Medonte, Gurratan Singh, MPP for Brampton East, Deputy Opposition House Leader and the Official Opposition Critic for the Attorney General, and Lucille Collard, MPP for Ottawa-Vanier and the Liberal’s Shadow Critic for the Attorney General.
We also hosted Roundtable Sessions on Legal Aid, Real Estate Law, Family Law, Criminal Law, and Courthouse Issues and there were a number of individual meetings between participants and their local MPPs.
On February 20th, 2020, approximately 60 lawyers from law associations all across Ontario descended upon Queen's Park for a full day of meetings and events. After some networking over breakfast, our members received a recap of key issue and a session on Lobbying/Advocacy 101 with Fasken's Lindsay Aagaard before heading in to watch Question Period. We then hosted a luncheon reception for all MPPs and staff where both the Honorable Doug Downey, MPP (Barrie—Springwater—Oro-Medonte) and Ontario's Attorney General and Gurratan Singh, MPP (Brampton East) and the NDP critic for the Attorney General said a few words. At 1:30, individual members began breaking out into various groups and headed off to meetings with individual MPPs, Cabinet Ministers, and Ministers' staff. In all, 26 separate meetings were held!
The day wrapped up with a round table debrief.
Check out our or pictures!
Gurratan Singh, MPP & NDP Attorney General Critic
Lobbying is commonly understood to be a a type of advocacy that can occur when groups or individuals bring issues and concerns directly to their government. This would involve speaking with MPPs (elected public officers) in their local riding, to party leaders, ministers and critics, and political staff with regard to developing or changing government policy. The Lobbying Act states there should be “free and open access to government is an important matter of public interest”. Lobbying is a defined term in the Lobbying Registry Act.
FOLA's Lobby Day is an opportunity to speak with politicians to positively affect change in policy.
FOLA's Lobby Day is an excellent opportunity to raise awareness of Ontario's 47 Law Associations, and issues concerning Ontario's roughly 12,000 small and sole practicing lawyer among some of the most important decision makers in the province while at the same time, offering FOLA's members a glimpse into the life of a politician and/or their staff.
This quick 2 minute video by the American Chemical Society offers a great check list for you before your meetings. For a recap of the of the list, visit here.
In Advance of the Meeting
Plan how you'll describe the issues you want to discuss.
Make sure to avoid unnecessary jargon and don't "talk down" to legislators and their staff. These individuals are smart and well informed, but they usually won't have legal backgrounds.
If you're going as a team, plan beforehand who will take the lead and how you'll each effectively share your main points.
Attending the Meeting
Be on time. The member may be running late -but you shouldn’t!
Recognize that you'll likely be talking to a staff member too.
Be succinct: You will have 15 quality minutes: limit your message and stay on point. Have a clear "ask"? Now's your time to make it!
Describe the importance of the issue to your work. Use anecdotes or personal narratives. Explain how this affects their community and the public.
Be open to questions. If you don’t know the answer, offer to get it and follow up.
Conclude and reiterate top points, making sure to capture follow-ups or commitments.
After the Meeting
Thank them verbally for meeting with you.
Follow up by sending a thank you email to the MPP and the staff person who spoke with you. This is especially important if your goal is to establish a relationship.
Touch base with office contacts every three months to help build a relationship.
And don't forget to check out this handy video.
FOLA will help arrange meetings for you, but if you choose to arrange your own, here are some great contact resources.
Here's your go-to list for all current MPPs and staff. Looking for a Cabinet Minister or their staff? Click on Ministries (drop down menu). Looking for an MPP or their staff? Select Legislative and then the party they belong to. Here's quick link.
Link to the main Ontario MPP & staff directory (includes Ministers and Parliamentary Assistants).
Looking for your MPP and don't know who that is or what Riding you live in? Look it up! Just click on the blue button below.