March 26, 2010
Re: Support of Organ and Tissue Donation
In 2008, the New Jersey League of Municipalities (NJLM) appointed me as liaison to the New Jersey Organ and Tissue Sharing Network, Inc. (NJ Sharing Network), the federally designated organ procurement organization that serves most of New Jersey. I am writing you as April’s Donate Life Month approaches to ask your support of organ and tissue donation. DRAFT RESOLUTION - WORD or PDF
There are more than 4,600 New Jersey citizens waiting for the gift of life. There are several programs, mandated in the NJ Hero Act (approved 7/22/2008, P.L.2008, c.48), that will raise awareness and improve the administration of the process of donation. NJLM is doing its part by working closely with NJ Sharing Network to advocate for donation by implementing a program that you can use to encourage your constituents to register to become organ and tissue donors.
To kick off this opportunity, there will be a press conference in Plainfield, NJ on April 12, 2010. This is the perfect time for each of you to pledge to become a registered donor in the state of New Jersey, if you have not done so already, and to encourage your constituents to do the same. You will be receiving more information as the date grows near.
Our work in advocating donation continues to be challenged by the reality of an increasing demand for life saving organs. The opportunity exists for you, as a leader in your community, to assist in the important work of saving lives. NJLM invites you to engage with NJ Sharing Network and your constituents to encourage donor registration and education.
There are many ways you can make a difference in the lives of those waiting for a life saving organ. NJ Sharing Network stands ready to assist you in implementing the following opportunities in your area.
- In advance of April, Donate Life Month, we aim to increase recognition of organ and tissue donation issues and activities. Possibilities include: providing a link to the on-line donor registry on your municipality’s website, editorials, mayor letters and email blasts, and speaking opportunities at meetings with local officials either through the county leagues or before church groups, rotary clubs, Knights of Columbus groups, and others.
- Hero Act legislation requires New Jersey high schools to include organ and tissue donation education in the curriculum. As a leader in your community, you can bridge relationships between superintendents of schools and NJ Sharing Network. You can facilitate these relationships by showing public support of this legislation. Support may be communicated through media interviews or other public relations initiatives that highlight efforts in your high schools.
- Hold a donor registration drive in municipal office buildings for employees that include the distribution of promotional items and literature.
As a reminder – NJ Sharing Network staff and volunteers stand ready to assist in these and other creative ways of engaging constituents in making the decision to register to be an organ and tissue donor. Please join us at 10 am, April 12, 2010 in Plainfield, 515 Watchung Avenue, Mayor’s Office, Plainfield, NJ to pledge your commitment to organ and tissue donation.
NJ Sharing Network is able to serve your communities through participation in many forms of outreach, including through high schools and institutions of higher learning in your municipality. Please direct requests and questions by contacting Melissa Honohan, Director of External Relations at 973-924-2031 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you on behalf of the thousands who wait for a life saving gift and in honor of those donors and donor families who are true heroes.
Mayor Sharon Robinson-Briggs William G, Dressel, Jr.
Liaison to the New Jersey Organ and Executive Director
Tissue Sharing Network, Inc.