Legislative Action

The voice of our profession is heard by legislators

When legislators consider new laws that affect veterinary medicine, it is critical that they fully understand the detailed implications.

We build relationships with legislators so that they always consult us and respect the concerns we raise.

Read on to find out how we act, and how you can help.

Members of NYSVMs at US capitol

Advocacy programs

How we make sure that your voice is heard

Lobby Day

On Lobby Day NYSVMS leadership visit New York State legislators at the NYS Capitol in Albany or over Zoom. We focus on legislators who chair the committees that are responsible for veterinary issues, or who have a particular interest in issues on our Legislative Agenda.

The day starts with a a short briefing followed by meetings in the morning and early afternoon. We are guided in these meetings by our legislative counsel.

This is a great opportunity for these legislators to hear from veterinarians about these issues.

Meeting legislators during fundraisers

The NY State Veterinary Political Education Committee (VPEC) is a fund that enables members to meet legislators during their fundraisers. It is a great way of building long-term relationships. It also shows our support for the legislators who show an interest in issues related to veterinary medicine.

We invite members to contribute during our annual renewal campaign and those funds pay the contributions that enable us to mix and mingle socially with legislators.

Grassroots Legislative Network

The Grassroots Legislative Network is an informal group of veterinarians who are willing to contact their State Senators and Assembly members about specific issues when we send out the call.

Mobilizing a coordinated grassroots call for action is a powerful tool, but only when used sparingly and at the right time.  Once or twice during a legislative session you might see us send out a call for you to participate in our Grassroots Legislative Network and provide specific information to support you.



What we do to make your voice heard

A quick guide to how we are working to ensure laws and regulations provide the most effective environment for veterinary medicine

Top level legislative representation

Emily E. Whalen is our legislative representative in Albany. She is with Brown & Weinraub who consistently rank at the top of the list among New York lobbyists.

Emily is very well known among both legislators and staffers in the New York legislature. This enables her to be extremely well informed whenever there is movement or discussion around bills that might affect us.

Ms. Whalen’s reputation for highly-effective lobbying and wise counsel has been developed through her work with hospital systems, corporations, not-for-profit organizations, and professional associations, with a particular focus on health care, professional licensing, and cannabis.

Strong Legislative Agenda

The New York legislative session runs from January to June each year. In the fall the NYSVMS Government Relations Committee meets to put together a legislative agenda as a guide to how we will respond to specific bills that we know will be proposed for the next session. We also develop positions on issues that we want to move forward.

This agenda is distributed to the office of every elected legislator, and we also present it during one-on-one meetings with individual legislators.


Members of NYSVMs at US capitol

Active Government Relations Committee

Our members are at the heart of our Government Relations work. The Government Relations Committee puts together the Legislative Agenda and guides our legislative representative through the session.

At times during the legislative session the Committee leadership will become very active, especially if our legislative representative is involved in negotiations around the language of a bill, or we are actively working with legislators to provide data that supports our position.

Related Articles

Articles covering our government relations work