#PABudgetMeans 2015-2016 State Budget Social Media Toolkit

Unifying the voice of nonprofits to leverage their power

GPNP created a social media tool kit for your organization to use to participate in the #PABudgetMeans social media campaign. The full toolkit can be downloaded here as a pdf and found below with talking points. Images to post on social media -- and instructions -- are available at the bottom of the page; click here to jump to them. A directory of legislators' Twitter handles is available to download here. Click here to find your legislators. 

Download the Western PA State Senate Delegation's Contact Info

Download the Western PA State House Delegation's Contact Info

State Budget Impasse Talking Points

GPNP urges you to mobilize Board Members, staff, funders, donors, and consumers in communicating the impasse’s impact on your agency to legislators. We also urge your agency to share this information through traditional and social media channels.

MESSAGE: Pass a negotiated budget with essential funding for human services

  • The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania contracts with nonprofits to provide many vital, basic needs services including:
  • Mental Health Services
  • Food Security for the Hungry
  • Elderly Services
  • Disability Services
  • Veterans Services
  • Drugs and Alcohol Treatment
  • Child Abuse Prevention and Intervention
  • Housing Services
  • Without a budget, these basic services cannot continue. Without essential human services funding, demand will not be met.
    • Pennsylvania contracted for these services, but nonprofits cannot deliver their services without receiving the money that is guaranteed through state contracts.
    • The lack of a budget prevents the state from leveraging federal matching funds.
  • My agency provides services that the government cannot.
    • The public trusts elected officials to steward state finances and taxpayer dollars.
    • Pennsylvania is not paying our organization because the Governor and General Assembly did not meet their constitutional responsibility to pass an on-time budget.
  • My agency is under contract to provide [services] to [your consumers].
    • Without the state budget, we cannot guarantee uninterrupted service.
  • My agency receives [amount in state funding] per month to serve [your consumers].
    • That money enables us to serve [number of consumers] and contribute to the local economy as an employer.
    • We spend the state money we receive in our community to serve people in our community
    • [Number] of my employees’ positions are at-risk because of the budget impasse. If the impasse continues, we will have to lay off employees, which adds to the unemployment in our region.
  • Borrowing money is an unnecessary expense for my agency.
    • Interest and other fees are not reimbursed by the state; which means we have to raise the money just cover the cost of the budget impasse.

Additional Costs

  • Debt Service
  • Unemployment
  • Lost Earned Interest
  • Increased Unemployment Insurance
  • Carrying Costs on Credit Cards
  • Staff Turnover


Social Media Toolkit for 2015-2016 PA Budget Impasse

GPNP strongly urges your organization to join us in using social media to communicate the impact of the budget impasse to your supporters, elected officials, and the media.

The message of our combined social media effort for Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn is:

“Pass a negotiated budget with essential funding for human services.”


Twitter enables users to communicate in brief 140 character messages. Using hashtags to distinguish messages will get them noticed and classify them as part of particular conversations.

Steps for Using Twitter:

1. Create a new Tweet with the PABudgetMeans hashtag and include the number of people, locations, types of services, or other facts. For example:

#PABudgetMeans [service] for [number of people] in [location]

#PABudgetMeans responsible care for the elderly

#PABudgetMeans $33 million for Allegheny County human services

#PABudgetMeans continued care for the most vulnerable in Pennsylvania

#PABudgetMeans responsibility and compromise

#PABudgetMeans serving veterans that have served us

2. To further humanize and add substance to your organization’s Tweets, attach a picture from your organization that showcases the individuals you serve. If possible, add this text to the picture: “Call on Harrisburg Now to Compromise.” Sample pictures are provided to use.

Please remember to use pictures that belong to your organization and have signed releases from the photo’s participants.

3. Tweet at your elected officials. For example:

@RepTurzai the #PABudgetMeans responsible care for the elderly

4. Use Twitter to tell the story of how the budget is impacting your organization. For example:

#PABudgetMeans my organization will serve [number of clients] with [service]


Facebook connects friends, groups, and peoples together via a large social media network. However, even if someone or a group is not directly connected to you, it is still possible for them to get your Facebook post via your friends and “liked” network.

Steps for Using Facebook:

1. Like and share the Greater Pittsburgh Nonprofit Partnership Facebook page. This will carry messages from GPNP to your timeline, which you can share with your larger network. Also, encourage others to like and share GPNP Facebook Page.

2. Include budget content in your post, as well as how your organization and people fit into the bigger picture. The more engaged and interested people are in your post, the more visibility it will get. This means you should include pictures or graphs in your post to showcase how your services or consumers are impacted.

3. Call people and groups to action by linking to your website or legislator contact information in a post.

4. Urge individuals and groups to like and share your post on their timeline in order for others to see it. 


LinkedIn connects professionals together, similar to Facebook, and acts as a virtual networking platform. LinkedIn users choose to be part of different networks or organizations, and select professionals with whom they want to affiliate. These affiliations and can help carry your organization’s message about the budget even further. These individuals are some of the most influential and important people during a time like this. 

Steps for Using LinkedIn:

1. If you have not done so already, affiliate with and build a reputable network of individuals and organizations so that they can see your material. Connect with elected officials, their staff, your Board members, staff, and supporters.

2. Use the Publish a Post button on your timeline feed to share information about the budget and the message of “Pass a negotiated budget with adequate funding for human services.” Your connections will be able to see the post. Please remember that LinkedIn is utilized for professional purposes, so use professional language.

3. Join GPNP’s group, GPNP: Greater Pittsburgh Nonprofit Partnership, and re-post your post in the group. We will share it, and group members will see it and share it too.

#PABudgetMeans Images

To share these images you can:

* Retweet and edit the posts in the media gallery on GPNP's Twitter page available here;

* Share and caption the photos from GPNP's photo album on Facebook available here; and

* Download the images by left clicking "Save Image As" or using the links under each image. You can use the downloaded images for Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.