Public Policy

Atascadero AAUW encourages its members to become advocates for the Public Policy mission of AAUW. To facilitate this goal, the Atascadero Public Policy team plans the following actions during the 2018-2019 year:

  1. Writing monthly columns about Public Policy for the Branch Breeze; these will focus on local, state, and national issues that affect our members and other women in our community.
  2. Encouraging member participation in AAUW’s Two-Minute Activist program; By registering on this website, AAUW members are provided with sample letters to send to their representatives when our voices need to be heard on sensitive issues.
  3. Addressing Public Policy as a regular feature at general meetings, using ice-breakers, etc.
  4. Planning one of the general meetings: Public Policy is planning a program on Leadership and Civic Engagement for the November 2018 meeting.
  5. Encouraging members to contact their elected representatives directly about issues that support AAUW’s mission. Contact information is located below.

For additional information about Public Policy on the state and national levels, please consult the advocacy page on the California AAUW website and the Public Policy page on the national website,

See list below for contact information for our state senators and representative.

Eileen O’Grady, Jeanne Miller, Linda Chimenti, Public Policy Team for 2018-2019

AAUW National Action Priorities, 2017-2019

National priorities inform state and local action. Biennial priorities for national action are chosen according to the criteria of viability, critical need, strong member support, and potential for distinctive AAUW contribution or leadership. No order of importance is implied.

To support a strong system of public education that promotes gender fairness, equity, and diversity, AAUW advocates

  • Adequate and equitable funding for quality public education for all students
  • Opposition to the use of public funds for nonpublic elementary and secondary education and to charter schools that do not adhere to the same civil rights and accountability standards as required of other public schools
  • Protection of programs that meet the needs of girls and women in elementary, secondary, and postsecondary education, including strong promotion of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education and comprehensive sexual health education
  • Vigorous enforcement of Title IX and all other civil rights laws pertaining to education
  • Increased support for and access to affordable higher education for women and disadvantaged populations
  • Increased support for programs that break through barriers for women and girls in STEM fields

To achieve economic self-sufficiency for all women, AAUW advocates

  • Pay equity and fairness in compensation and benefits
  • Equitable access and advancement in employment, including vigorous enforcement of employment anti-discrimination statutes
  • Greater availability of and access to a high standard of benefits and policies that promote work-life balance, including quality and affordable dependent care
  • Programs that provide women with education, training, and support for success in the workforce, including nontraditional occupations and women’s entrepreneurship
  • Strengthening programs, including welfare and career and technical education, to improve postsecondary education access, career development, and earning potential
  • Strengthening retirement benefits and programs, including pension improvements and protecting Social Security from privatization

To guarantee equality, individual rights, and social justice for a diverse society, AAUW advocates

  • Vigorous enforcement of and full access to civil and constitutional rights, including affirmative action and expanding voting rights
  • Self-determination of one’s reproductive health decisions
  • Increased access to quality, affordable health care and family planning services, including expansion of patients’ rights
  • Freedom from violence and fear of violence, including hate crimes, in homes, schools, workplaces, and communities
  • Support for U.N. programs that address human rights and women’s and girls’ concerns
  • Freedom in the definition of self and family and a guarantee of civil rights for all family structures
  • Passage and ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment


Contact Information for Senators and 24th District Representative

Senator Dianne Feinstein

Local office for SLO County:                                       D.C. office:

2500 Tulare St                                                United States Senate                                                                 Suite 4290                                                  331 Hart Senate Office Bldg.                                                Fresno, CA  93721                                          Washington, D.C.  20510                                                      559-485-7430                                                  202-224-3841


Senator Kamala Harris

Local office for SLO County:                                       D.C. office:

2500 Tulare St                                                United States Senate                                                                 Suite 5290                                                  112 Hart Senate Office Bldg.                                                Fresno, CA  93721                                          Washington, D.C.  20510                                                      559-497-5109                                                  202-224-3553


Representative Salud Carbajal

Local office for SLO County:                                       D.C. office:

1411 Marsh St                                                                                                                                                      Suite 205                                                  212 Cannon House Office Bldg.                                              San Luis Obispo, CA  93401                      Washington, D.C.  20515                                                          805-546-8348                                              202-225-3601

To send an email or to find out more about legislation they are sponsoring or supporting, log onto their websites.

Research indicates that in-person visits are the most effective means of contact; phone calls to local offices are the next most effective approach.

Information current on 10/14//2017