Once we get a favorable reading from the Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development, which could happen any day now, the Healthy Workplace Bill will move into the House. Then debate begins. Our legislators will go back and forth on the pros and cons of the bill. That’s when we’ll ask you to contact your legislators again to remind them why you want the Healthy Workplace Bill, HB 1771, to become law. So the goal is to get as many advocates as possible to contact their legislators in this crucial next step for the bill.
To get more advocates on our contact lists, it’s important to reflect on what’s happened behind-the-scenes up to this point to get the word out about workplace bullying and the Healthy Workplace Bill. Advocates across the Commonwealth have stepped up to spread the word:
- One advocate got her local public access channel to air our videos as Public Service Announcements.
- Many advocates showed their support by attending hearings at the State House.
- One advocate is planning an art display.
- Several advocates flyer regularly in their towns.
- Several advocates submitted their stories for our website.
- One advocate tabled at a local event.
- Many advocates signed the online petition.
- Several advocates told their stories on film.
- Several advocates flyered at commuter rail stations.
- Many advocates retweet postings.
- One advocate mailed out letters to organizations asking for official endorsement.
- Several advocates flyered outside T stations.
- One advocate wrote a poem for submission to legislators.
- Several advocates wrote to their local papers in support of the bill.
- One advocate is planning an event on the Cape with several high profile names.
- Several advocates testified at the last four hearings at the State House.
- One advocate held a workshop about workplace bullying.
- Many advocates shared postings on Facebook.
- One advocate runs races wearing a t-shirt about the bill.
- Several advocates spoke with local organizations about the bill.
- One advocate is working on getting local organizations in the labor movement to support the bill.
- One advocate flyered outside hospitals.
- Several advocates comment on online articles in support of the bill.
- One advocate got the Massachusetts Teachers Association to officially endorse the bill.
- One advocate contacted political organizations at colleges and universities across the Commonwealth asking for their support.
- Several advocates have blogged about workplace bullying or the bill.
- Many advocates forwarded emails to family, friends, and colleagues about the bill.
- One advocate is working on getting his union to post about the bill on a billboard on I-93.
- One advocate’s lobbyists push the bill at the State House.
- One advocate speaks about workplace bullying on a regular basis.
- Many advocates called, emailed, and met with legislators asking for support of the bill.
Thanks to these efforts, we’ve spread the word about what workplace bullying is and why we need a law. We’ve grown from about 20 advocates four legislative sessions ago to roughly 5,000 advocates who we call upon at various steps in the session to act. We thank you, and we ask you to continue to get creative and proactive about spreading the word. For every person you tell about workplace bullying and the bill, there is a ripple effect.
Let us know what you’re working on to spread the word.
Here’s an often underrated indicator of how a social movement gains momentum and legitimacy: More and more victims of abuse and mistreatment begin to speak out publicly, sharing their experiences and calling for change.
It’s happening with the workplace anti-bullying movement right now, and I realized that many of us (myself included) have taken this shift for granted. Put simply, greater numbers of people who have experienced (or closely witnessed) workplace bullying are making their voices heard. They are doing so through legislative testimony, letters to the editor and website comments, blogs and articles, media interviews, radio and television appearances, and posted videos.
Not long ago
Believe me, it hasn’t always been this way.
When this movement was in its infancy roughly a decade ago, it was unusual to find bullying targets willing to go public with their stories. Public understanding of workplace bullying was at such a low level…
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