Advocacy Resource Guide for the Salary Supplement Initiative
Your Source for Advocating at the Local and State Level
Since 2000, members across the country have used the State Advocacy Guidebook for the Salary Supplement Initiative to advocate for salary supplements through state legislation and regulation and local district initiatives. Successful advocacy efforts have resulted in employers rewarding members with salary supplements for the following:
- Obtaining and maintaining an advanced credential (ASHA's CCC)
- As additional pay for increased work due to Medicaid billing/paperwork requirements
- As a tool to recruit and retain highly qualified speech-language pathologists and audiologists
The purpose of this resource is to help you become a knowledgeable and empowered advocate for yourself, the professions and the children and families that we serve. Revised as a web-based document, you are able to select only the sections you choose. We hope that the updated information that you find in this guide will be relevant and useful to you in your efforts to advocate for a salary supplement initiative.
Janet Deppe, MS, CCC-SLP
Director, State Advocacy
Educate Yourself: Know the Facts!
In order to advocate for change, you need facts and data to support your request. The resources included in this section include the history and requirements of the CCC and National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS), successful state and local initiatives, and a side-by-side comparison of the two certification processes.
Develop Your Proposal
Once you have gathered facts and information you will need to organize it in a logical and succinct manor. Developing a proposal to share with decision makers will help you organize your facts, state your request, and defend your proposal. You will need to include the following:
- Proposed Action
- Background information
- Restatement of request
See what a sample proposal [PDF] looks like.
For state salary supplement efforts you will want to follow these steps:
- Step 1: Analyze Your State's Potential for Change
- Step 2: Form a State Committee and Assign Roles
- Step 3: Develop a State Advocacy Plan
View Develop an Action Plan for more details on the steps.
Remember that change at this level requires a sustained effort, persistence, and patience. Realistic goals and time frames for achieving your goals are a must!
Meeting With Decision Makers
Identifying key decision makers, understanding the budget process and being able to answer tough questions are key to having a successful interaction with decision makers. In preparation for a meeting with a decision you should:
- Prepare a succinct and effective message for reaching your audiences such as key stakeholders and decision makers.
- Develop a comprehensive awareness and education campaign aimed at decision-makers including administrators such special education directors and school unions responsible for district level decisions and legislators responsible for passing education-related legislation in your state.
- Make sure that all of the SLPs and Audiologists are in agreement and have the same set of talking points and information. When appropriate, involve consumers in delivering your message.
Review these resources to help you prepare:
Engaging the Media
Developing letters to the editor, op-eds, and establishing relationships with reporters are all important components to successfully engaging and utilizing the media to promote your efforts. Included in this resource are guidelines for getting your message across, and developing sample letters, op-eds, and press releases.