An inside look at AARP’s rapid response team

The head of grassroots advocacy shares how the association structures and runs this team, and how it’s responding to COVID-19.

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AARP has been on the frontlines to ensure its members, those aged 50 and older—who are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19—are protected when it comes to their health.

“It’s a great unknown that we’re all dealing with,” said Reshma Mehta, director of grassroots advocacy at AARP, at Ragan’s Speechwriting and Public Affairs Virtual Conference on March 25. “It’s about taking care of our members first and foremost. Focus on your people and community first before anything else.”

For AARP, that means suspending campaigns that were running before the pandemic and pivoting to advocacy and education around the coronavirus. “It’s not business as usual,” she said.

Among the actions the association has taken:

TODAY at 1 pm (ET): Join AARP's weekly live tele-town hall and ask government officials your questions. They'll be sharing info for family caregivers, and how to avoid coronavirus scams.

☎️ 1-855-274-9507

— AARP Advocates (@AARPadvocates) March 19, 2020

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