Friday, July 22, 2011

MyGov365...Self-Advocacy in Motion!

Earlier this month a groundbreaking partnership was forged between the ADAP Advocacy Association (aaa+) and MyGov365 designed to better engage people living with HIV/AIDS in the legislative process at the federal, state and local levels. Constituents (a.k.a., voters) often make things happen because lawmakers benefit from their support; so imagine what constituents can do if they were better informed about legislation, as well as connected to their peers who share likeminded this case, securing appropriate and timing access to care and treatment for people living with HIV/AIDS. MyGov365 provides the necessary tools to make it happen!

aaa+ is the first national HIV/AIDS organization to harness the networking and educational power of the MyGov365 platform. The nonpartisan platform empowers people living with HIV/AIDS with a free suite of tools to enhance communication and collaboration with the general public, peers and elected officials.

MyGov365 is comprised of a diverse mix of everyday citizens with one common passion: to use innovative technology to bridge the communications gaps between citizens, government, organizations and political professionals. MyGov365’s platform intelligently matches users to their districts and elected officials, making it extremely easy for officials to share information and gather feedback. As updates occur such as introduced legislation, bill summaries, or discussions, constituents receive notifications about activity in their district and/or by their specific elected officials. This increases awareness and engagement, and can help lay the groundwork to build community support for various issues, which in turn makes it easier to get legislation considered. Individuals can create their own profile for free at!

MyGov365’s platform is currently comprised (and growing) of legislation from the United States Congress, District of Columbia (DC) and 32 states – Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Florida, Hawaii, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.

In the Spring 2011, Americans witnessed the "Arab Spring" sweep across the Middle East, ushering in a new era of democracy and freedom for millions of people. Their success was fueled by years of discontent, coupled with a newfound ability to communicate, organize and protest called social media. Never before had people been armed with the tools to instantly communicate with each other on such a large scale to influence political change.

In the United States that same model needs to be employed by HIV/AIDS activists -- and in no other case is the need more pressing than by ADAP constituencies and stakeholders. Weekly, we witness approximately 200 of our fellow HIVers get relegated to a demeaning, stressful and unhealthy place called an ADAP waiting list. In fact, as of July 14th, there were 8,689 individuals in 13 states on ADAP waiting lists, including Alabama with 88 individuals; Arkansas with 37 individuals; Florida with 3,558 individuals; Georgia with 1,669 individuals; Idaho with 23 individuals; Louisiana with 886 individuals; Montana with 29 individuals; North Carolina with 302 individuals; Ohio with 373 individuals; South Carolina with 858 individuals; Utah with 29 individuals; Virginia with 837 individuals; and Wyoming with 0 individuals.

The aaa+/MyGov365 partnership has the ability to re-engage longtime leaders, while also attracting fresh new voices to this fight. What better way to teach the next generation of HIV/AIDS activists than by political networking the very same way social networking is done on Facebook, or professional networking is done on LinkedIn? Often times, too, some constituents complain that understanding the political and legislative process is difficult because the process isn't spelled out in layman's terms, or the information isn't easily and readily accessible. MyGov365 changes that paradigm.

According to Jay Resio, President of MyGov365, using the civic engagement platform, aaa+ will empower its new and existing members to stay informed and engaged about important issues, legislation and civic activities related to the organization's mission. Members can track legislation and receive updates, cast votes on legislative initiatives, collaborate in the ADAP Advocacy Association’s network, and more. ADAP constituencies and stakeholders will benefit from MyGov365's ability to provide member feedback and insight to elected officials, civic leaders and other organizations to help expedite the legislative and civic decision-making process.

Sign up today at It's free and easy to use!

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