2019 Disability Day at the Capitol Tips & Tools for Attendees
Thank you for your interest in attending the 2019 Disability Day at the Capitol – we are excited to advocate alongside you during this important event for members of Minnesota’s disability community!
To ensure that your experience is as positive and impactful as possible, we’ve compiled information and resources that may be helpful in preparing for the event.
Learn about the issues
As you know, there are many critical issues affecting Minnesotans with disabilities, their family members, support staff, and allies statewide. The Arc Minnesota’s goals for this legislative session aim to address some of the major problems and concerns that stakeholders have shared with us, and Disability Day at the Capitol is a critical opportunity to advocate and raise awareness about these issues among elected officials.
To understand what we’re doing to reduce parental fees, address the workforce crisis, prevent sexual violence, improve access to self-directed supports, increase investment and self-advocacy and more, you can reference The Arc Minnesota’s 2019 Legislative Session page on our website. There you’ll learn about policy priorities we’re advocating for this session, review our full legislative agenda, and find resources that you can share with legislators as well.
Parking is limited throughout the Capitol Complex, so be sure to arrive early and give yourself plenty of time to make your way to the Capitol Building.
This map shows the following accessible (and general) parking options:
- There are 8 free public accessible parking spaces in Lot AA, located on Rice Street, two blocks west of the Capitol building (not pictured on map).
- There are 10 free public accessible parking spaces on the first level of Ramp F, located on Freeman Avenue and Rice Street – adjacent to the Department of Transportation building.
- There are 20 free public accessible spaces in the Minnesota Senate Building ramp, accessible from Sherburne Avenue to Capitol Boulevard (no access from University Avenue).
- If you do not find parking in these areas, there is street parking around the Capitol complex. It would be a distance to travel and you will need to pay close attention to parking restrictions.
Depending on where you park or which public transportation options you access, consider using the tunnel system to get to the Capitol Building where the event will be held.
9:00 AM – Check-in/ On-site registration begins (Department of Transportation Cafeteria)
9:30-10:00 AM – Issue briefing/ advocacy training (Department of Transportation Cafeteria)
10:30-11:00 AM – Disability March & Roll (from Department of Transportation Cafeteria to Capitol)
11:00-11:45 AM – Disability Day at the Capitol Rally (Capitol Rotunda)
Also in the Department of Transportation Cafeteria will be a resource table with legislative agendas, informational one-pagers, and tips for meeting with elected officials as well as materials to create posters/signs for the rally.
Additional event information and registration can be found on our events calendar.
Rally in the Rotunda
The rally will be held at 11:00 a.m. in the Capitol Rotunda. A bariatric bench, CART services, and an interpreter will be available for individuals who utilize these supports.
Please note that we expect several hundred people at the rally, which may be challenging for those who are sensitive to stimuli. We encourage you to consider your needs throughout the event and take a break or locate spaces – such as the Capitol Basement (accessible by stairs or elevator) – that are quieter and less crowded.
Meeting with Legislators
Attendees are encouraged to connect with elected officials throughout the day, and it is best to schedule meetings in advance, if possible. Meeting with elected officials provides a unique opportunity for advocates to raise awareness about the issues that impact the disability community.
Upon arrival, let them know that you are a constituent – someone who lives in their district – and share a brief personal story. To prepare, here’s a link to some tools that can help you plan for your meeting and develop a personal story.
Some legislators will be in committee hearings, so you may need to pull them from the committee in order to meet. To do so, there are several options:
- Meet the elected official’s legislative assistant at their office, and request their support in pulling the legislator from their committee hearing.
- Go directly to the hearing room and identify the committee attendant stationed near the door. Notify them that you have a scheduled meeting with the elected official; they will then help pull your legislator from the hearing on your behalf.
If you were not able to schedule a meeting with your legislator(s), consider meeting briefly with their legislative assistant. They will be happy to tell the legislator about your visit and pass along any materials (personal stories, fact sheets, etc.) that you leave behind.
After the Event
If you meet with elected officials, consider sending them a “thank you” card and your contact information following the event. This will go a long way in helping them remember you and the issue(s) for which you’re advocating!
Also after the event, you will receive an evaluation; please take a few minutes to complete it, and share your feedback about Day at the Capitol. It will be incredibly helpful as we plan and prepare for next year!
Many thanks in advance for your advocacy, and we wish you a great Day at the Capitol!