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We Are Pro-Choice New York: 2013 Albany Day of Action
NARAL Pro-Choice New York
Annual Lobby Day
Empire State Plaza Convention Center
Tuesday, May 21st, 2013
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Advocate. Learn. Organize.
Please note that Lobby Day registration has closed.
For more information about getting involved in other ways, please contact Christopher at
NARAL Pro-Choice New York’s annual Lobby Day is designed to prepare our supporters and activists to advocate for pro-choice statewide legislation comfortably and confidently.
Specifically, our Lobby Day seeks to:
- Highlight the critical importance of passing the Women’s Equality Agenda and all 10 of its points.
- Inform all participants of new trends regarding reproductive rights and provide ideas as to how to advocate for it on the state level and in your own community via a series of impactful workshops.
- Train all participants in effective citizen lobbying.
NARAL Pro-Choice New York has chartered buses for transportation to Albany and they will depart from New York City, Binghamton/Oneonta.
New York City Bus (Look for the "Golden Touch" bus)
Departure Location: NARAL Pro-Choice New York HQ (between 31st and 32nd)
Departure Address: 470 Park Ave South, NYC, NY, 10016
Bus Rider Arrival Time: Bus riders should arrive at 6:30 AM.
Bus Departure Time: The bus will depart at 7:00 AM.
Parking/Transit Directions to NARAL Pro-Choice New York HQ:
From NYC: Take the 6 Green Line to the 33rd Street Stop and literally walk across the street.
From Westchester: Take the MTA to Grand Central Station and walk 10 minutes down Park Ave South to the office.
From Long Island: Take the LIRR to Grand Central Station and walk 10 minutes south down Park Ave South to the office.
NARAL Pro-Choice New York Representative: A NARAL Pro-Choice New York representative will be at the location to greet and sign in all bus travelers.
Binghamton: (Look for the "Eastern Travel" bus)
Departure Location: Oakdale Mall, Sears Parking Lot
Departure Address: Oakdale Mall, 601-635 Harry L Dr., Johnson City, NY 13790
Bus Rider Arrival Time: 6:30 AM
Bus Departure Time: 7:00 AM
Parking Directions: Please park in the parking lot near the Sears. The NARAL representative will give you a parking decal so that you car is not towed during the day.
A NARAL Pro-Choice New York representative will be at the location to greet and sign in all bus travelers.
Oneonta Bus: (Look for the "Eastern Travel" bus)
Departure Location: South Side Mall, near Bed, Bath, and Beyond
Departure Address: Southside Mall, 5006 New York 23, Oneonta, NY 13820
Bus Rider Arrival Time: 8 AM
Bus Departure Time: 8:30 AM
Parking Directions: Please park near the parking lot close to Walmart. Mall management does not require a parking decal so you are free to leave your car during the entire day.
A NARAL Pro-Choice New York representative will be at the location to greet and sign in all bus travelers.
All buses will depart Albany at 4:00 PM.
Driving to & Parking
For those driving to Albany, NARAL Pro-Choice New York will reserve and thus pay for parking for drivers who use the V (for "visitor”) Lot. However, as Tuesday is the busiest day for the Plaza, we highly recommend you leave early enough to arrive at 10 AM in order to find a suitable space and thus take advantage of our reserve.
If you wish to receive the benefit of free parking in the V Lot, you must download, print, and leave on your dashboard our Special Parking Decal. You can download the Special Parking Decal here.
For general directions and a list of parking options, please click on the below link which once upon on your browser can be printed.
For more info on directions and parking, see this Driving Directions and Parking Options pdf.
Train & Taxis
For those taking the train, you will need to book with Amtrak to get to Albany. The route is regularly traveled so we highly suggest you book the 7 AM train out of Penn Station and the 5pm train departing from the Albany/Renessalear Station.
Taxis serve the Albany/Rensselaer Station from 4 am-9pm every day. One way fare is $10 dollars. When giving directions to the cab driver, ask them to take you to the Madison Ave side of the Empire State Plaza Convention Center. After Lobby Day concludes, please go to the Information/Sign In Table to hail a cab back to the train station.
As you might imagine, the capital of New York state, one of the largest and most powerful governments in the world, is heavily guarded. Since you will be meeting one-on-one with its elected representatives, all participants of lobby day must bring a photo ID to participate in this day of advocacy.
Lobby Day Location
Our Lobby Day will occur in the Empire State Plaza Convention Center which is located in the Capitol complex that houses nearly all of New York state’s government institutions. The bulk of our day will be spent in two of the larger meeting rooms in the Center - specifically, Meeting Rooms #2 and #3 in the North Concourse. For a map of the Center and the location of our designated meeting rooms please click on the link under "Check In”.
Check-in and registration begins at 10:00 AM in the Empire State Convention Plaza in the North Concourse’s Meeting Room 2. For those taking the bus, a taxi from the train station, or driving we will have staff and directional signs to guide you to our Information Table to check in. You can use this map to navigate to the check-in area, and throughout the Empire State Plaza.
Breakfast & Lunch
We will be providing a light but nutritious breakfast for all participants during registration leading up to the formal open of Lobby Day. Breakfast will begin at 10 AM.
We will also be providing a buffet style lunch which will be served between 1-2pm. Kosher meals will be provided as well.
NARAL Pro-Choice New York staff have pre-scheduled lobby meetings with your State Senator and State Assemblyperson prior to Lobby Day. During the hours between 12pm and 3pm, you will have a single, 25-30 minute meeting with your elected member of the Legislature. You will be joined by others who live in the same legislative district as you and be accompanied by a Team Leader, a staff member of either NARAL Pro-Choice New York or our partners in the movement, who will serve as a kind of "MC” for your respective meeting and help answer some of the more policy-focused questions our representatives tend to ask in these meetings. Our Team Leaders are a resource for you to draw upon in the meetings and are dedicated to ensuring each and every participant holds an impactful lobby meeting.
While we will provide materials for you in your Lobby Day packet that will inform you of your member in the Legislature, if you are unsure as to who is your elected representative in Albany please click this link.
Lobby Day Materials
Each participant of Lobby Day will receive their own packet of materials. In this packet you will find some of the following:
- A Welcome Letter from NARAL Pro-Choice New York’s President, Andrea Miller
- Legislator Info Sheets: Information about your State Senator and Representative.
- Location Maps: maps of the Plaza to help guide you to and from our meeting rooms and your lobby visits.
- Talking Points: A series of message points regarding our issue and the Women’s Equality Agenda to help guide your conversations.
- Leave-Behind Materials: A series of documents we will leave behind with representatives that drive home the importance of our issue, the majority support it holds in New York, and information to educate representatives regarding the Women’s Equality Agenda.
What if I don’t have a photo ID? Can I still attend Lobby Day?
If you do not have a photo ID, please contact Christopher at NARAL Pro-Choice New York at firstname.lastname@example.org immediately.
What will we say in our Lobby Meetings?
Before your visit, all participants will be trained on effective lobbying during our Citizen Lobbying Training. We will train you on using your own reason’s for supporting reproductive rights and the key talking points regarding the Women’s Equality Agenda.
Where will our Lobby Meetings take place?
Most of your Albany representatives have offices in one of two places: the Legislative Office Building (called the "LOB”) or the Capitol. You will have your meetings in the individual offices of your representatives in these two buildings.
Will there be security provided at Lobby Day?
As mentioned above under "Identification,” there are few complexes of buildings in America as secure as the state capitol of New York. Capitol police will be very visible during your time in Albany and NARAL staff has taken precautions to ensure our supporters, activists, and board members will be protected during our day of action.
Are we required to eat the meals provided at Lobby Day?
NARAL will provide nutritious and wholesome meals for both breakfast and lunch. However, we recognize everyone has a unique palette that may not be served by our meals. Our meeting rooms are very close to restaurants and cafes located in the North Concourse so, assuming you are not late for lobby meetings, you are free to patronize them.
What if we accidentally miss the bus to travel to or from Albany?
You will need to find alternative means to either travel to Albany or travel back home. To be clear, however, we will make numerous announcements to ensure you catch your bus and are clear as to the location of buses.
|10-10:30 am||Sign In|
|10:30-11:30 am||Open Plenary|
|10:30-11:30 am||Opening Session|
|11:30-12 pm||Workshop: Citizen Lobby Training 101|
|12-3 pm||Lobby Meetings & Workshops|
|1-2 pm||Buffet Lunch|
|3:10-3:30 pm||Lobby Day Group Debrief & Evaluation|
|3:30-3:45 pm||Closing Session|
|3:45-3:50 pm||Lobby Day 2013 Group Photo|
|4 pm||Lobby Day 2013 Concludes|
During the downtime between lobby meetings, NARAL Pro-Choice New York’s staff will present a series of workshops that seek to advance the conversation about reproductive rights with a special focus on how participants can use the information and idea gained during this day of state-level advocacy to effect change on the local level. Below are brief descriptions of this year’s workshops.
|12-12:45 pm||Emergency Contraceptives & Local Advocacy||Emergency contraceptives have been a major news item of late. This workshop will provide participants with a broad overview of EC, recent FDA litigation, innovative state trends, and end with a conversation on how to advocate on the local level for more access to this key tool of reproductive health.|
|12-12:45 pm||Women's Equality Agenda Teach In||The Women’s Equality Agenda would be a bold and historic reform should it pass in this year’s Legislative Session. But what, exactly, does it entail and why is it needed? This workshop seeks to provide participants with a broad overview of the Agenda’s 10 points and how each would move the full range of women’s rights forward for our state.|
|2:15-3 pm||Reproductive Rights & Local Advocacy||Generally, the bulk of advocacy regarding reproductive rights occurs at the federal and state level. But our opponents have used local government- often at the village level- both to organize and gain victories. This workshop will begin with a simple question: "How can local communities impact reproductive rights?” . From there we will discuss local advocacy strategies to deal with so-called crisis pregnancy centers, buffer zones and other forms of clinic protection, and end with a facilitated discussion of action items all of us can take to advance reproductive rights at the local level.|
|2:15-3 pm||Emergency Contraceptives & Local Advocacy||Emergency contraceptives have been a major news item of late. This workshop will provide participants with a broad overview of EC, recent FDA litigation, innovative state trends, and end with a conversation on how to advocate on the local level for more access to this key tool of reproductive health.|