Write a Personalized Letter to Congress
For our community members in the United States, one meaningful way to start the conversation surrounding lupus awareness is to write a letter to your federal legislators. These legislators represent you in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. If you have never done something like this, don't worry – we are here to help.
Tell your representatives why giving lupus a nationwide platform and supporting federal research funding is important. Remember, knowledge is power. Lupus education is an essential part of advocacy. We have created some simple steps and resources to help get your letter in the mail.
To get started, use this Lupus.net free template and its facts, or use your own words. It is entirely up to you.
Sample letter to congress
Dear [your legislator's name],
I am writing to you as a lupus advocate to tell you my story and encourage you to support lupus research.
Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that causes the immune system to attack healthy tissue, such as the skin, joints, kidneys, brain, and other organs. Lupus affects 1.5 million people in the United States and 5 million people worldwide. About 90 percent of those living with lupus are women. About 10 percent are men. Men are often diagnosed later in life and have considerably more severe symptoms.1
Lupus symptoms and severity vary per person and can change over time. Common comorbidities include cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, infections, fibromyalgia, cancer, osteoporosis, depression and anxiety, antiphospholipid antibody syndrome, and other autoimmune diseases.
My experience with lupus is . . . [Tell your story here. You might want to include personal details about how long it took you to get diagnosed, receive proper treatment, and get disability or social security benefits. You could describe how difficult it is to work or complete daily tasks around the home and how far you have to travel for care. You might list other effects of lupus, such as sun sensitivity, infertility issues, and anything else you experience. This part is all about you!]
I call on you to . . . [Describe how your legislator can support the lupus community. This might be getting involved in grassroots events you are connected with, supporting federal funding for access to crucial benefits, and more.]
[your name], a lupus advocate
Share your letter (optional)
Step 5: Drop your letter in the mail
Seal, stamp, and send copies of your letter to your senators and representative! Share this downloadable form with your networks, and spread the word. Let's work together to raise lupus awareness.
Have you ever had to change holiday plans because of lupus?