H. Res. 77 – Embracing the Goals & Provisions of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
H. Res. 77 Advocacy Resources
H. Res. 77 is a resolution introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) and Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) in January 2023 that calls on the United States to embrace the goals and provisions of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) and to adopt Back from the Brink’s comprehensive policy prescriptions for preventing nuclear war. Back from the Brink is all in on using H. Res. 77 as a vehicle for transformative change—as a grassroots organizing and advocacy tool to stimulate real debate about nuclear weapons in communities around the country and for cultivating congressional leaders committed to advancing the cause of nuclear disarmament. Below are actions you can take and resources you can use to help grow the demand for change and build a bold, visible nuclear disarmament constituency in the United States. Be sure to also check out our May 31 Growing Support for Nuclear Abolition webinar with Congressman McGovern, who shared his wisdom and insights about H. Res. 77 and the many ways folks can make a difference. Questions? Don’t hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Current Cosponsors – 42 (updated 11-22-23)
*Contact Your Representative*
Pass a Local BftB Resolution
Write letters to the Editor
Share on Social Media
Backgrounder for House Offices
Organizational Sign-On Letter
US Mayors Resolution
H. Res. 77 Advocacy Cards
Contact Your U.S. House Representative!
There are many ways to contact your House Representative to urge them to cosponsor H. Res. 77. You can call their Washington DC or district office, schedule an in-person or virtual meeting, or send an email. Be sure to identify yourself as a constituent and follow up if a week or more goes by without a response.
CALL YOUR REPRESENTATIVE
Calling your U.S. House Representative’s office is an important, simple way to bring H. Res. 77 and your views and concerns, as a constituent and voter, about nuclear disarmament directly to them and their staff’s attention. This website can help you find out who your U.S. House member is and their contact information.
If you call the Washington, DC office and someone answers the phone, ask to speak to the “aide who handles military and nuclear weapons issues for the Congressperson.” If that person is unavailable, you can leave a message, ask that the aide call you back, or ask for the aide’s email address and send them an email urging your rep to cosponsor H. Res. 77. Include a link to our H. Res. 77 Q&A Backgrounder for House Offices in your email and let your rep know if any municipalities in their district have adopted a BftB resolution.
You’re likely to have better success talking to an actual person if you call a local district office. Be prepared to leave a succinct voice mail message that identifies you as a constituent, includes your name and phone number, relays your message that you want the member of Congress to cosponsor H. Res. 77 and requests that a member of their staff return your phone call.
Hi, my name is ______________ and I’m a resident of __________ and a constituent. I’m calling to encourage Congressmember _______________ to co-sponsor H. Res. 77 which was introduced by Rep. Jim McGovern and Rep. Earl Blumenauer on January 31st. Right now the threat of nuclear war is very real and frightening. H. Res. 77 calls on the U.S. to lead global efforts to work with all nuclear weapons states to abolish all nuclear weapons and to adopt policies to prevent nuclear war. I support this Resolution because (*pick one or more*):
- Global tensions are high, and the risk of accidental or intentional use of nuclear weapons is greater than ever before according to experts including the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists’ and their Doomsday Clock
- The U.S. spends billions of dollars to build and maintain a nuclear arsenal that must never be used and that doesn’t make us safe. We have more pressing security needs in our district, like housing, poverty and gun violence that our tax dollars could be spent on,
- This is a justice issue. Nuclear weapons are immoral, illegitimate, do not make us safe, and are instruments of oppression and an affront to democracy. No one person or nation should hold the fate of humanity in their hands alone.
- My city/town passed a Back from the Brink resolution, as did others in the area (*name them*). There are also many local organizations who support this approach, including (*name them*).
Now is the time to step back from the brink of nuclear disaster, and this resolution lays out a commonsense approach to do so. Again, I encourage the Congressmember to co-sponsor H. Res. 77, and to reach out to Congressmembers McGovern and Blumenauer’s offices if you have questions. To learn more about why this is necessary, you can also visit the Back from the Brink Coalition’s website at www.preventnuclearwar.org. Thank you.
Meet with your representative can be one of the most effective ways to communicate your concerns about nuclear weapons and ask your representative to cosponsor H. Res. 77. Call the district office and ask to speak to the scheduler to request a meeting. While you may get to meet with your representative, you’re more likely to meet with a member of your representative’s staff. Invite a few others from your community to participate, preferably people that represent diverse backgrounds and interests (nuclear frontline communities, environment, health, science, faith, justice.) If you live in an area that has adopted a BftB resolution, see if one of the elected officials who introduced or supported the resolution can join you. Each person should speak for no more than a few minutes, adding local/personal concerns when possible. Hold a meeting with your team prior to meeting your representative to go over what each person will say. Send a thank you email or card to your representative after the meeting. Please reach out to us if you need any assistance or support.
Write to your Congressional representative to urge them to co-sponsor H. Res 77 using this simple, one-click action, and then share the action page with your network and on social media. Feel free to personalize your letter, including if you live in an area that has adopted a BftB resolution. You can also call your representative’s DC office and ask for the email address of the person who handles military or nuclear weapons issues, and send that person an email. Organizations, please consider sending an “action alert” email to your supporter networks that includes a link to BftB’s action page—or draft and send your own action alert.
Pass a local resolution
Organize a resolution effort for your town, city, county or state and include support for H. Res. 77 in the resolution. Resolutions are excellent public awareness, engagement, and advocacy vehicles, and can be an impactful way to demonstrate to your federal representatives that their constituents want them to take action on nuclear abolition. More than 70 municipalities and states have passed Back from the Brink resolutions or proclamations already.
Here’s a sample resolution that you can customize for your community, and here is Back from the Brink’s Guide to Resolutions and Proclamations for more information on how to pass a local resolution. As always, we encourage you to reach out to us for support.
Write Letters to the Editor
Letters to the Editors (LTE) are a great way to both educate folks in your community and to reach members of your congressional delegation. Your letters should be relatively short — e.g. no more than 150-200 words and convey no more than 2-3 key messages. Ideally the letter should have a strong hook — a reference to a recent article in that newspaper or something that has been in the news lately. See Tips for Writing and Getting Your Letter Published – Union of Concerned Concerned Scientists Activist Resource.
Possible hooks for getting the letter to the editor published
- Russia’s recent announcement that is suspending its participation in the New START, putting the only remaining agreement between the US and Russia in jeopardy
- In January, The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists moved their Doomsday Clock to 90 seconds to midnight – the closest it’s ever been to symbolic global catastrophe
- February 24 one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine
Talking Points/Key Messages General Script
- Today, the risk of catastrophic nuclear war is all too real—greater than it has been since the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962.
- Russia’s recent announcement that it is suspending its participation in the New START Treaty puts the only remaining nuclear arms agreement between the US and Russia in jeopardy.
- During this time of war and heightened global tensions it is critical that the United States and Russia talk to each other and engage in diplomacy and recognize the world’s collective self interest in preventing a catastrophic nuclear war that could threaten all of humanity.
- At the height of the Cold War and heightened tensions in the 1980’s, President Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev engaged in diplomacy and negotiated significant nuclear arms control agreements.
- Congress, including [NAME OF HOUSE REPRESENTATIVE] needs to show real leadership in advocating for global, multilateral, verifiable nuclear disarmament and stepping us back from the brink of nuclear war
- [NAME OF HOUSE REPRESENTATIVE] should take the first step by co-sponsoring H. Res. 77 recently introduced by Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA) which calls on the United States to lead a global effort to prevent nuclear war by adopting common sense policies proposed by the national grassroots nuclear abolition campaign, Back From the Brink (www.preventnuclearwar.org) [Note: By mentioning your House member by name your letter is much more likely to get published.]
- Nuclear weapons don’t make us safe. They did not prevent nor deter Russia from invading Ukraine. They are the greatest threat to our security and survival.
- It is our responsibility to help shape a livable future for our community, our children, grandchildren and all future generations.
- Nuclear weapons are a local issue. Each and everyone of us has a voice and role in preventing nuclear war and are encouraged to get involved with the Back from the Brink Campaign.
Post messages about H. Res. 77 and the need for congressional leadership on nuclear disarmament and dialogue with Russia on your social media channels. (Note: Local organizations should tag their House members.) Here’s where you can find their Twitter handles.
- With Putin’s decision to suspend participation in New START, Congressional leadership on nuclear arms control and disarmament is more important than ever. [NAME OF HOUSE REPRESENTATIVE] please cosponsor H. Res. 77 by @RepMcGovern & @repblumenauer and help bring us back from the nuclear brink.
- The threat of #nuclear war is greater than it’s been in decades. We need our Congress people to show leadership for a new, bold approach to #nuclear arms control and disarmament. As a first step, please cosponsor H. Res. 77 recently introduced by @RepMcGovern and @repblumenauer.
- As the #Ukrainewar continues, the risks of nuclear war keep rising. We need our Congress people to show leadership for a new approach to #nuclear arms control and disarmament. As a first step, please cosponsor H. Res 77 recently introduced by @RepMcGovern and @repblumenauer.
- Tired of being at the mercy of a bully with #nuclearweapons? As your rep to cosponsor H. Res. 77 & join the movement to encourage talks amongst the nuclear armed states. A safer future is possible. Find out more @preventnuclearwar.org #PreventWar #NoTimeToWaste
- Concerns about #nuclearwar are rising as Putin flexes his muscles. Want a tangible way to help? Ask your congressional rep to cosponsor H. Res. 77, introduced by @RepMcGovern and @repblumenauer. #UkraineWarAnniversary
- No longer can we allow #nuclearweapons to threaten our future! Now is the time to do something! Pressure your congressional leader to take action by cosponsoring H. Res. 77. More info here: preventnuclearwar.org @RepMcGovern and @repblumenauer
- Dear [NAME OF HOUSE REPRESENTATIVE], We need your help! We’re looking for cosponsors for H. Res. 77, a resolution that includes tangible, time-bound steps to prevent nuclear war. Can you cosponsor? Find out more here: preventnuclearwar.org @RepMcGovern and @repblumenauer [include the congressional leader’s Twitter handle here]
H. Res. 77 Q&A Backgrounder for House Offices
Back from the Brink has prepared an H. Res. 77 Q&A Backgrounder for House Offices that provides additional information and responds to frequently asked questions. Click here to view and download the H. Res. 77 Q&A Backgrounder for House Offices. Note, if you are including the backgrounder in an email to your representative, it may be better to include the entire link instead of attaching the pdf. The full link is https://preventnuclearwar.org/files/H.%20Res.%2077%20Backgrounder%20FAQ.pdf.
Organizational Sign-On Letter
Back from the Brink organized a letter signed by 154 local, state and national organizations to all members of the U.S. House of Representatives urging Congress to take more leadership in advancing policies to reduce nuclear risks and achieve a world free of nuclear weapons—beginning with cosponsorship of H. Res. 77. Organizations that signed the letter include Union of Concerned Scientists, Physicians for Social Responsibility, Sierra Club, Public Citizen, Natural Resources Defense Council, Friends of the Earth-USA, Peace Action, Islamic Society of North America, United Church of Christ, Pax Christi and scores of other local and national faith, environmental, public health, peace and justice organizations.
The letter was emailed and hand-delivered to House Congressional offices in March 2023. However, it’s possible that the letter has not come to the attention of your representative. You can help make sure your representative reads the letter by including it in your outreach efforts.
You can also reach out to local organizations in your community and organize your own local organizational sign-on letter to your representative. This is one way to begin to find common cause and build relationships with other organizations and community members in your area, while demonstrating to your representative that H. Res. 77 has broad constituent support. Include local aspects or concerns in your letter if possible. After you deliver the letter, follow up with a phone call or meeting request.
United States Conference of Mayors Resolution
Thee United States Conference of Mayors (USCM) unanimously adopted a new resolution titled, “Calling for Urgent Action to Avoid Nuclear War, Resolve the Ukraine Conflict, Lower Tensions with China, and Redirect Military Spending to Meet Human Needs” at its 91st Annual Meeting in Columbus, Ohio on June 5, 2023. The resolution calls on the U.S. to pass H. Res. 77, noting USCM’s previous support for the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons and the Back from the Brink campaign. It is the first time a U.S. Conference of Mayors resolution on nuclear disarmament lends the organization’s support to a specific legislative measure. You may wish to include the resolution in your talking points when urging your House Member to cosponsor H. Res. 77. Here’s a copy of the USCM resolution that you can link to or download and bring with you when you meet with your representative.
H. Res. 77 Advocacy Cards
Back from the Brink has created H. Res. 77 advocacy cards that can be distributed at Oppenheimer screenings, Hiroshima-Nagasaki remembrances, or other community events. Please let us know if you or your organization would like some cards and (as long as we have enough available) we will mail to you. You can also download files here to take to your local printer or to print at home.
H. Res. 77 Cosponsors – 42 (Updated 11-22-23)
H. Res. 77 is sponsored by Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA). Current cosponsors are listed below. If your representative is listed, please take a moment to thank them for showing leadership on nuclear abolition. Thank your representative directly and publicly though social media. You can also ask your representative to give a floor speech, issue a public statement, or announce their H. Res. 77 cosponsorship on their social media channels.
If your representative is not listed, please urge them to cosponsor using the resources above.
Thank you for taking action! Together, we can create a safer and more just world free of nuclear weapons.