If you follow the MDA on Twitter @modentalassn, you know yesterday was a full and successful day at the Capitol. Advocacy was in full force at the MDA Legislative Day as 75 members and dental students took to the Capitol to engage our lawmakers on the issues important to dentistry. Katie Reichard, MDA Legislative Director, experimented with having the Legislative Day much earlier in the session to coincide with our traditional Legislative Reception. That change, combined with a noticeably better turnout, yielded strong results as well as favorable feedback from attendees.
With the earlier start, there was less extracurricular activity from other groups and less built up clutter for lawmakers. This allowed for a wide variety of solid appointments with legislators where our viewpoint could be expressed and understood. Having both veteran members and a good dental student showing from both UMKC-SOD and ATSU-MOSDOH demonstrated that our issues are a concern to both present and future doctors. Plus, the interaction with members across the state reflected the importance of making time to advocate as a united front. If you have never attended a Legislative Day, I’d encourage you to consider it next year. It’s educational, important and rewarding. And if you’ve never been to our beautiful state Capitol building, it truly is awe-inspiring.
Among the highlights from the day were special meetings with Majority Leadership and Governor Nixon’s policy director, Jeff Harris. I was proud of our members as they articulately explained their positions and expressed their concerns. I was equally impressed by the respect and response from the lawmakers. We were heard!
The day wrapped up with the MDA Board and a few students hosting a reception for legislators. It was well attended and allowed further, focused contact with either new lawmakers or valued veterans who have been in our camp.
Enjoy the photos from the day and stay plugged into MDA for developments as the legislative session unfolds. Contact Katie for more info.