Wildlife Funding Week (October 31-November 4)

American Bird Conservancy sent out the following call for action for the last week in October; what they are calling "Wildlife Funding Week".
Funding for vital wildlife conservation programs is more on the chopping block than at any time in recent memory. And because of current debt reduction pressures, decisions Congress makes this fall about wildlife funding are likely to have very long-term impacts. To ensure wildlife programs receive the visibility of other programs there is a critical and immediate need to highlight wildlife funding concerns to policymakers by mid-November and to urge them not to cut essential wildlife programs administered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service including those for endangered species, wildlife refuges, migratory birds and international conservation.

During the week of October 31-November 4 concerned organizations and individuals will highlight to Congress and the Administration the benefits of maintaining wildlife programs and the impact of severe cuts. Legislators in California, Illinois, Maryland, Montana, and Washington will be a particular focus.

Wildlife Funding Week will increase the visibility of these programs; demonstrate there is a supportive and well-organized national constituency; educate policymakers about the tangible impacts of cutting wildlife programs and drive home the message that they should not be defunded.

Specific projects for Wildlife Funding Week may include:

• A Capitol Hill fly-in from targeted states and congressional districts

• A Capitol Hill briefing and photo exhibition highlighting some of the benefits of conserving wildlife

• Visits to key policymakers by the leadership of national organizations participating in this campaign including Defenders of Wildlife, American Bird Conservancy, National Audubon Society, National Wildlife Federation and many others.

• Action alerts and media releases.

Your organization can take part by:

• Sending a representative to Washington Nov. 1 and 2.

• Alerting your members to contact their lawmakers in support of funding wildlife conservation. American Bird Conservancy has an action link available at http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5400/t/2205/p/dia/action/public/index.sjs?action_KEY=7069.

• Issuing a press release highlighting conservation advances and the economic benefits of migratory birds in your state and region.

For those interested in coming to Washington, please contact me as soon as possible at sholmer@abcbirds.org, or 202 234 7181 ext. 216.