APLD works diligently to advocate for our members’ right to practice. We also want to ensure our members are aware of legislation and regulations that could affect negatively affect their rights. We address advocacy in a number of ways and encourage our members and stakeholders to support our efforts in any way possible!
Day on the Hill Guidebook
APLD is anxious to help members advocate for their right to practice. Whether you are one individual, a group of designers or an entire chapter, the APLD Day on the Hill Guidebook can be a useful tool. In addition to tips about how to advocate for your right to practice, we have also provided handouts for you to print out and use as leave-behinds when you are visiting with key decision-makers. We hope you will find this document useful!
Advocating for landscape designers’ right to practice is one of the most important benefits of APLD membership. Often called the “silent benefit,” advocacy efforts to protect right to practice in states and jurisdictions nationwide are being conducted on a regular basis. Whether the effort is national, statewide, regional or in a local community, dedicated APLD members are routinely and passionately advocating for the profession of landscape design and landscape designers as qualified and dedicated professionals. Landscape designers are trained and educated and have experience in the field of design, plant knowledge and the manipulation of exterior space. Bringing this awareness to the public and to elected officials is critical to the growth and livelihood of the industry. Consider making a special effort to advocate for yourself, your livelihood and your profession by participating and supporting one or more of the ideas mentioned below.
The efforts of individual APLD chapters toward legislative and advocacy efforts create an impact that can be felt nationwide, and strong relationships are important when it comes to future legislative action. Critical inroads are made when promoting awareness of our profession and educating legislators of what landscape designers do BEFORE a right-to-practice crisis occurs. Chapters have the specific role of influence with both their members as well as a larger group of allied professionals in the development of powerful and influential relationships. Chapter leaders can host joint meetings with related professionals, share lobbying resources with affiliate groups and promote shared public outreach events, all to develop key relationships. Chapters can organize “Meet and Greet” or “Day on the Hill” events that get members to the capitol building to meet legislators and staff members.
Chapters can also encourage their members to reach for higher standards by hosting certification workshops or conducting trainings that qualify for CEU credits. When APLD members attain higher individual standards and strengthen the standards of our profession, we have a much stronger platform from which to advocate.
For an example of how one chapter has been working diligently on advocacy, visit this link. You can also view videos about the California Chapter advocating on behalf of APLD members by watching the video located on their homepage at www.apldca.org.
If your chapter has information to share regarding your advocacy efforts, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tracking Legislation: State by State
Individual members can educate themselves by signing up for a StateScape account. StateScape is the legislative tracking tool used to monitor and research strategic legislation in every state. This online tool can assist members in tracking introduced legislation in the areas of licensure and professional regulation, the built environment, ecology and conservation and related professions. An individualized account can be set up for free, and online training is available by watching this video. Informed members can react and respond in a timely and responsible fashion to the potential of damaging legislation. You can sign up for an account by contacting Advocacy Chairperson Naomi Goodman via email at email@example.com. Once you have signed up, you can view the instructional video below.
Codes and Standards
Environmental codes are changing rapidly nationwide and often right in your city; stormwater, gray water, drought, fire, native plants, irrigation and public welfare codes are affecting how we practice. Chapter leaders and members are encouraged to monitor regional and local jurisdictional code and regulatory changes that may inadvertently or negatively affect landscape designers. Members can partake by attending public hearings and speaking out to how the work of landscape design affects consumers and the economy of a community, provides jobs, delivers critical services and protects and safeguards the environment. We don’t want to be unintentionally excluded from the environmental codes to which many landscape designers are trained and qualified to take part in, just because a lawmaker or code official isn’t aware of our profession. You have influence as an expert; take advantage of your own advocacy skills to bring awareness to the public and to educate legislators by eagerly sharing this information.