Too often, citizens and local conservation groups learn about important policies after decisions are made, making it too late to have an impact. Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters Institute shines a light on the policy-making process, educating and engaging people to employ the right strategies at the right time and helping activists and groups implement a consistent message. We may not have the big money of polluting interests, but by acting fast and keeping decision makers under public scrutiny, we are able to effectively protect Wisconsin’s air, land, and water.
Some of our key programs include:
Holding Conservation Listening Sessions
We bring together members of a wide range of conservation groups – including local lake associations, sportsmen groups, environmental organizations, farming groups, and more – to learn more about what issues matter most to people in communities across Wisconsin. These lively discussions help us determine our priorities and ensure that we are listening directly to the people who are on the front lines fighting for Wisconsin’s natural resources.
Engaging and Training Citizens
Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters Institute links citizens and local groups across Wisconsin with the policy-making process in Madison. We teach the skills and provide the tools for citizens to be effective voices for environmental policy-making. Some of the activities taken on by Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters Institute’s volunteers, activists, and supporters include meeting with decision makers, hosting educational events, testifying at public hearings, and writing letters to local newspapers.
Here are just a few examples of our citizen engagement in 2015 that led to policy victories:
- Mobilizing citizens almost 14,000 times around protecting the Stewardship Program. In addition to email action alerts, WLCVI-mobilized citizens held meetings with their legislators, wrote letters to local newspapers, and asked friends and family to join in.
- Generating over 11,000 letters in support of funding for County Conservationists – our boots on the ground working to reduce polluted runoff and providing critical testing and monitoring that keep our land and water clean.
Conservation Lobby Day
Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters Institute brings citizens from across Wisconsin to the Capitol to share their conservation values with their legislators. In 2015, almost 300 people attended Conservation Lobby Day, where they met with their legislators and focused on four key legislative priorities. Just one day after Conservation Lobby Day, the Joint Finance Committee fixed Governor Walker’s proposal to turn the Department of Natural Resources Board into an advisory board – one of our priorities! Time and again, Conservation Lobby Day proves that when citizens come together to make their conservation values known, legislators listen, and conservation victories soon follow!
Advocating for Conservation Issues
Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters Institute is your eyes and ears in the State Capitol. We monitor each and every conservation policy considered by the state legislature, proactively move forward a pro-conservation agenda, and make sure that you know the latest information. When we see opportunities to protect Wisconsin’s air, water, land, or sporting opportunities, our team of field organizers moves quickly to engage citizens to effectively protect our shared conservation values.