By Tenzin Khando
Standing in solidarity with the monks of Kirti monastery in Ngaba, Minnesota Regional Tibetan Women’s Association, Regional Tibetan Youth Congress of MN, Students for a Free Tibet - MN, Tibetan American Foundation of Minnesota and Gyuto Monastery of Minnesota organized a mass lobbying session at the Minnesota State Capitol on Friday, April 29, 2011. A a Prayer session at Gyuto Monastery in Minneapolis was also held later in the day.
The lobbying campaign had a team of about 20 community and organization members who visited every office at the capitol and the State Office Building and disseminated information packets consisting of a Press Release, TWA’s Urgent Appeal Letter as well as their compiled list of those who have been noted as missing, jailed or killed during the recent crisis at Kirti Ngaba.
The Minnesota Legislative body consists of 134 legislators in the House of Representatives and 67 senators who hold offices either at the State Capitol or at the State Office Building across the street. The community members participating in the lobbying team worked tirelessly and despite any prior lobbying experience, successfully managed to coordinate and disseminate the relevant information.
Furthermore, the Lobbying team was able to personally hand information and discuss the potentially catastrophic situation in Ngaba with Representative Paul Thissen (DFL) of the MN House of Representatives and MN Senator Patricia Ray Torres (DFL).
RTWA-MN’s Lobbying Campaign for Kirti Ngaba was prompted by the TWA’s urgent call for a “Global Petitioning and Lobbying for International support for the Ngaba victims” to all of its 57 regional chapters spread across the globe.