The Conservation Affairs Network engages and unifies the efforts of The Wildlife Society, its 200+ units, and more than 15,000 members to advance wildlife conservation policy issues at the national, regional, and local levels.
Launched in 2014, the Network creates a venue for streamlined communication, collaboration, and cooperation on policy matters important to wildlife professionals. Wildlife professionals now have an effective method for bringing their valuable and crucial perspectives into the policy process, to the betterment of wildlife conservation.
The Network operates through Conservation Affairs Committees (CAC) established within TWS Sections and Chapters. These committees are charged with identifying and addressing policy priorities within their region, and communicating their activities and needs with other CACs and TWS Staff. CACs and TWS Staff support each other in their policy activities, lending experience and expertise to enhance efforts. Check out the Policy Toolkit for insights and guidance on how best to engage in wildlife policy.
The Network simplifies, clarifies, and unites the efforts of TWS units to more efficiently and effectively address policy concerns by:
- Coordinating effort. TWS units are made aware of policy activities occurring in other units, thereby allowing for collaboration and coordination of activities, rather than separately pursuing similar policy issues.
- Sharing of resources and knowledge. The Network allows for units to connect with topical experts around the globe to inform advocacy actions. Units can also share letters, position statements, other documentation, and experiences to assist other units in their policy pursuits.
- Engaging TWS membership. Members of TWS want to be engaged in policy actions. This Network provides clear direction to our members to help them become effectively engaged in policy issues and positively impact the outcome
- Unifying the messages of TWS across local, regional, and national policy. By communicating regularly, we can strengthen our message at all levels of government by remaining consistent and clear in our approach.
The Conservation Affairs Network communicates, in part, through a newsletter distributed to all Section and Chapter Conservation Affairs Committees. The newsletter provides a structured venue for Conservation Affairs Committees (CAC) and interested TWS members to learn about various policy issues occurring at local, regional, and national levels and what they can do to help address those issues.
The newsletter contents come from the Network itself – TWS Section and Chapter CACs send in information regarding their policy activities and requests for assistance to be included in the newsletter.
To view historical newsletters TWS members may login to Your Membership then navigate to Resources > TWS Policy Library and search for “Document Type > CAN newsletter.”