Longtime Advocate Gail lost her son Jae on June 7 as a result of workplace bullying at a hospital on Cape Cod that included physical threats, assault, and false accusations. Though the abuse happened a few years ago, it followed Jae. Jae recently spoke with Gail about the abuse and how it affected his life. He worked in fear of being attacked again. “Jason was an incredible nurse. Any and all who had him as a nurse spoke with such respect and love about him. Despite the time that goes by, the emotional damage remains and continues to wreak havoc,” said Gail.
We need everyone’s voices to make sure what happened to Jae happens to NO ONE ELSE. Bullied workers are twice as likely to take their lives as non-bullied workers.
Workplace anti-bullying legislation is the furthest it’s gone in the Massachusetts Legislature, and the two-year legislative session ends July 31. We start over again in January if the bill does not pass, so now is the time to act. The bill, Senate Bill 1013, is now in Senate Ways & Means and needs to get to a floor vote ASAP.
Here’s how you can help
Call Senate Ways & Means Chair Karen Spilka ASAP — even if you’ve called her before — at 617-722-1640. Ask whoever answers the phone to urge Senator Spilka to move Senate Bill 1013 regarding workplace bullying to a floor vote.
And spread the word. For Jae.
The Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development heard our testimony in support of Senate Bill 1013, the Healthy Workplace Bill, on April 4. Now it’s time to urge them to move it forward.
We ask you to call these four committee leaders even if you’ve called them before. Tell the person who answers the phone:
“I’m calling to support Senate Bill 1013, an act addressing workplace bullying, mobbing, and harassment, without regard to protected class. Can you ask the legislator to read Senate Bill 1013 favorably out of committee?”
They will ask your name and address and thank you for calling.
Here are the four committee leaders:
Senator Jason Lewis: 617-722-1206
Senator Pat Jehlen: 617-722-1578
Rep. Paul Brodeur: 617-722-2013
Rep. Tricia Farley-Bouvier: 617-722-2240
It’s that simple!
Since the two committee heads represent the town of Melrose, and legislators care about their constituents’ views to count on future votes, forward this message onto anyone who lives in Melrose.
Everyone in Massachusetts can call these leaders, too. Every call matters.
Phonebanking is a political strategy to collect data and encourage political action. It’s one of the most effective strategies we can take. So we’re taking on 43,000 phone calls to end workplace bullying in Massachusetts. Here’s why it’s important to help make calls:
- You’ll put a human behind the cause. You’re not a robocaller. You’re a live person who cares about a cause, and you’ll make a human connection, even if you leave a message. Your live voice tells the person receiving the call “this cause is important to me, so I hope you’ll take action.”
- You’ll reach out to those most likely to have been bullied at work. We’re calling liberal voters who are most likely to identify as workplace bullying targets, women ages 30-54, and who’ve taken political action by voting.
- People are suffering now. Imagine if you leave a message for someone who doesn’t know what workplace bullying is and feels isolated. Your phone call will take her out of isolation and give her a sense of relief. She’ll be able to start the healing process because you’ll connect her with action she can take and a network of people she can connect with.
- If people say they’ll call, they will. If someone gives you their word they’ll call, there’s a high chance they’ll actually call.
- You’ll help make it easier to make workplace anti-bullying legislation in your state. If the bill passes in Massachusetts, it will be easier to pass it in other states. So helping pass it here by making phone calls will speed up the process for everyone.
Share this message with others so we can get this bill passed. The suffering needs to end.
We have a goal of making 40,000 phone calls by the end of 2017 — with a big goal of passing workplace anti-bullying legislation by the summer of 2018, when this two-year legislative session ends.
The purpose of these calls is to let these people know what workplace bullying is and that we need them to call their state legislators to make it illegal. It’s really that simple.
We’ll call voters in the yellow towns on the above map. The goal: to get those state legislators for those yellow towns to support the workplace anti-bullying Healthy Workplace Bill to get enough of a backing in the State House to pass the bill. The gray towns are where we currently have co-sponsors, so our goal is to turn those yellow towns gray.
How we came up with this plan
Because we have limited time and people, we want to be strategic. Campaign managers say time and time again that using voter data to reach out face-to-face or on the phone is the most effective way to get people to act.
If we look at demographics, we know that:
- Women ages 30-54 are most likely to get bullied at work.
- Democrats and voters in state elections are most likely to take political action (since they’ve taken political action before by voting).
- Cities and towns where sick leave pay most overwhelmingly passed in 2014 are the most progressive, so their state legislators will be the most likely to push for workplace anti-bullying legislation.
So we obtained voter data of Democratic women ages 30-54 who took action by voting in the last state election in the most progressive towns of the state where we do not already have official legislative support. Those are the yellow towns on the map above, and the number of phone numbers we have is roughly 40,000.
They’re the group most likely to have experienced workplace bullying and most likely to take action.
We need your help
All you need is an email address, and we’ll share a Google doc with you that outlines instructions, names and numbers, and scripts. It’s incredibly easy, and you can make as many calls in your spare time as you’d like before 9pm. (If you’re not in Massachusetts, you can still help. If one state passes the bill, it will be that much easier for other states to pass it.)
No more trainings. No more Google Hangouts. Nothing’s required except a phone, a computer, and your awareness that you can make a difference in helping to pass this bill and make history.
According to grassroots campaign strategists at a recent weekend-long Mass Alliance workshop we attended, using voter data to reach out face-to-face or on the phone is the most effective way to get people to act.
So we researched towns where sick leave passed most overwhelmingly in the 2014 gubernatorial election to identify those towns where constituents would most likely contact their state legislators about workplace anti-bullying law (in yellow above). We’re working on obtaining voter files to target voters in these areas via door-to-door and phone so we can turn those yellow towns gray (where we currently have a state rep and/or state senator as a co-sponsor).
We need as many people as possible to at least make phone calls to urge people to contact their state legislators. If you’d like to sign up to attend a training for phonebanking and going door-to-door in your area, email firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll touch base when we have a training location setup.
(If you’re willing to investigate the email addresses of school teachers in the yellow towns above [minus Boston], also email email@example.com and claim a town, then email a list of email addresses to the same address in the next month.)