The annual National Bike Summit, hosted by the League of American Bicyclists, took place in Washington D.C. and virtually from March 27-30th. Ride Illinois staff and dozens of advocates from Illinois were in attendance. The theme of the 2022 Summit was ‘Choosing Our Future”. Learn more about the 2022 National Bike Summit at bikeleague.org/summit.
With anticipated big wins for investments in biking infrastructure ahead, now is the time to do the work of engaging with new partners, uplifting underserved communities, and ensuring we build networks on the ground and among movements. Session included a variety of meaningful discussions, opportunities to learn from others, and several mobile workshops that highlighted bike infrastructure in the nation’s capital.
The culmination of each National Bike Summit is Lobby Day. On March 30th, 22 advocates from across Illinois spent the better part of their day meeting with U.S. House and Senate members from Illinois and their staff via Zoom
During the course of the day, advocates spoke with Senator Durbin’s office and the office of 11 House representatives about two programs that were included in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), but not funded. If funded, these programs will increase safety for vulnerable road users and increase funding for cities to combat climate change.
The Illinois delegation appreciates the time that the elected officials and staff took to listen to our appeal. Each conversation concluded with asking the elected official for their support to fund the two programs. While the answer to those pointed questions was often “we’ll need to learn more before committing” the response was overwhelmingly positive.
Below is a list of the offices with whom the Illinois delegation met during Lobby Day:
Speaking with elected officials can be a bit unnerving. As a result of the training offered by the League of American Bicyclists and the discussions the Illinois delegation had prior to Lobby Day, the conversations were meaningful and focused. Ride Illinois would like to thank the following individuals for actively participating in Lobby Day meetings:
We’ve had an opportunity to follow up with those with whom we met with during Lobby Day. After all, we want the programs and topics we discussed must remain top of mind!
Ride Illinois encourages citizens from around the state to contact their elected officials to discuss the importance of safety and infrastructure in their community. We’re happy to offer our expertise prior to contacting your elected officials. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or (630) 216-9282.
Search for your elected officials on the Illinois State Board of Elections website. Then, give them a call or send an email to voice your concerns and suggestions to improve biking and safety in your community.
Please share your experience (and the response from your elected officials) with Ride Illinois via email or phone. Together, we are making Illinois better through biking!