Whatever your issue in psychological science, let’s turn it into a message that is not only heard, but resonates with people who can make a difference.

In the right place. At the right time.

Sit back and watch. And you’ll never again just sit back and watch.

Advocacy works. Here’s proof.

Congress and the Executive branch make far-reaching decisions every day on education, health, mental health, scientific research, social welfare and social justice – issues that impact our discipline as much as they do our communities.

Do you have to know everything about lobbying and politics to make a difference? Hardly. The experts here in our American Psychological Association (APA) Science Government Relations Office (GRO) are full-time passionate about taking your knowledge and turning it into results.

Did you know that psychological science led to care for caregivers?

Psychological scientists found that 1 in 4 caregivers in the U.S. suffered mentally, physically and financially from the stress of caring for family members with dementia. Subsequently, the U.S. Administration on Aging funded the National Family Caregiver Support Program to connect our nation’s 29 million caregivers with counseling, support groups and training, and respite care.

Did you know that psychological research helped reduce teen smoking, pregnancy, STD’s and drug use?

Attitude Inoculation dramatically reduces rates of teen pregnancy, teen smoking, illicit drug use and transmission of STDs, according to psychological research. This finding funded public service advertising campaigns that cut risky behaviors by 40% to 70%.

Did you know…

Almost every year, merit-reviewed, federally-funded grants to psychologists and other scientists are targeted by individual members of Congress (and more recently, the majority members on Congressional committees) as wasteful spending of taxpayer money.  APA’s Science Government Relations team works with these scientists to defend and promote the value of their work – in some cases even fighting and helping defeat Congressional amendments that would have de-funded these grants.

APA advocated with COSSA and other scientific organizations in support of the creation of NIH’s Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research in 1994.

APA came to the aid of Hillary Anger Elfenbein when her NSF research grant was attacked by Congress

In 2014 APA recruited over 3000 advocates to write over 6000 letters to congress (note: this is from real data from FAN)

One APA Science advocacy program:  Stand for Science District Campaign. # visits to # local congressional offices since 2014.

Stand for Science Campaign helps schedule congressional site visits with psychological scientists: # since 2014.

We should also have some bigger numbers from the most recent Science Leadership Conference advocacy years.  Use the substance use one.

Your Colleagues Stand for Science

“We had a wide ranging discussion of funding for science and for mental health…I think he learned a few things about the local research and its direct benefits to the state. We mentioned a few specific activities in addition to our own.  [The meeting in the district was] much better,  more relaxed, more personal, and more wide ranging. Really quite special.”

Mary Carskadon meeting with Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI)


“We discussed the First Act, and she took notes to vote against it. I also asked that she vote against any other attempts to line item out any psychological or social science studies as has happened in the past. She was very amenable to this.”

Ellen Wartella meeting with Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Il)


“He is a real advocate for research and understood the implications of sequestration, the importance of psychological science and the shortsightedness of attacks on individual grants. He was also very much aware of extended implications to the economy of research. [Compared to meeting in DC] the one on one [meeting] was certainly better.”

Beatriz Luna meeting with Rep. Mike Doyle (D-PA)