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2010 Tool Kit
One benefit of our democratic system of representation is that citizens are not required to learn every nuance of our government in order to fully engage it. Elected officials, who serve as our representatives, spend a tremendous amount of time and resource learning these nuances for us so that they can better represent us and legislate on our behalf.
However, in order to ensure the accountability of our elected representatives, it is important that every resident have some knowledge of how its government works. And if the government is not working for a resident, for a family, or for a community or constituency, it is important that every resident know what resources are available to assist her or him to best engage government structures and make change happen.
Whether it’s federal, state or local government, there is a wealth of resources that residents can access in order to engage government structures and hold them accountable to needs of the residents they represent and serve. For many laypeople, simply knowing that these resources exist is a huge accomplishment. It’s an even greater feat to know what these resources are, how they are typically used, and how to access them. To that end, we have created a short list of such resources, including descriptions and tips on how to use them, which residents can employ to better engage local government structures.
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