With the midterm election season looming this year, it’s an important time for advocacy for women in agriculture. Micheal Clements shares why and how you can get involved.
Clements: The American Farm Bureau Federation is encouraging farm women to get involved in political advocacy as the next election cycle nears. Isabella Chism, Chair of the AFBF Women’s Leadership Committee, says there are many opportunities for women to get involved.
Chism: Some of the possibilities would be as simple as inviting a candidate out to your farm. That's always a good way to get your foot in the door. Some of the other things that I think some people often forget about is supporting a candidate that you believe in. But one of the things that I like to suggest is use your comfortable space. I know that there are some women that are more comfortable in a classroom with young children, and so something that they could do would be to invite a candidate to read one of our agriculture books in a classroom.
Clements: Farm Bureau has many resources available to help members get started.
Chism: The Farm Bureau Women's Leadership Committee came out with an Advocacy in Action calendar that reminds us to keep advocacy in front of us every month of the year. The other thing that anyone can use is go to fbadvocacy.org, and there are many other tools and ideas there as well.
Clements: She says it’s critically important for farmers and ranchers, particularly women, to be involved in political advocacy.
Chism: If we're not going to be involved in it, others are, and then we're going to have to live with the results of that. And women in particular, I believe, bring a balance to the conversation and that's critical today. Women need to use their natural skills of inclusion and collaborative skills, to bring the sides together.
Clements: Learn more at fbadvocacy.org. Micheal Clements, Washington.