South Carolina Legislative Day
Involvement in public policy is vital to the health of our profession, and it affects every dietitian in our state!
The purpose of legislative day is to educate our members (whether you are a beginner or an expert) about nutrition policy, and how you can affect change! More importantly, we take one day every year to reach out to our legislators and let them know about the important role that dietitians play and why we are good to know!
Consider taking this day to network with other RDs, get continuing education credit, and meet the people making decisions in our state that impact your profession.
Legislative Day typically starts with informative presentations that will help you get comfortable with the basics of public policy, licensure updates, and the importance of reporting harm.
Legislative Day 2012
On Wednesday, March 21st, about 20 South Carolina Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics members went to Columbia for our 5th Annual Legislative Day. The Public Policy Panel has grown to 7 members this year. Attendees met at Capitol City Club and kicked off the day with three presentations to help boost their confidence about the public policy climate, and the logistics of meeting with a legislator. We enjoyed lunch and then headed over to the State House.
Phyllis Allen, MS, RD, LD, State Director of Public Health Nutrition with SC DHEC presented an industry update and described the Community Transformation Grant, the Healthy SC Initiative (HSCI), and several of the bills that are currently in the Senate and House of Representatives.
Angie Combs, the SC LLR Administrator gave an update on the state of Licensure in SC. We currently have 866 Licensed Dietitians to date! Angie reminded us that if you have a question about whether or not a non-RD is out of their scope of practice (and encroaching on yours), you should report them by going to www.llr.online.com and filling out a Complaint form, getting it notarized, and faxing or mailing in to the address listed. It is your duty to report harm, and feel free to contact Angie directly if you have any questions about what constitutes a violation of the SC Licensure law at 803 -896-4625 or email@example.com.
Finally, Donald Wood, our South Carolina Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Executive Director, who is well versed in the legislative process, gave an update on how to meet with your elected officials.
We left with several useful tips for our meetings with our State Senators and State Representatives. In all we made contact with about 30 of the legislators, either by face to face meetings, leaving packets of information about what RDs do and how we can help them as the nutrition experts, and by sending in notes while they were in session.
If you are interested in making contact with your elected officials, please contact the SC State Policy Representative, as we are compiling a list of SC RDs to be ‘Public Policy Partners’ who can reach out to their legislators during the year. Contact Kristen Quisenberry at firstname.lastname@example.org or (843) 670-8093.
You can find your legislators by going to scstatehouse.gov, enter address/zip code, then find who your national and state/local legislators are. This is much easier and more fun than it sounds – its having conversations with our elected officials so they are familiar with what RDs do, so that when any nutrition policies are on the table, they know who to reach out to!