How to Write a Letter to the Editor

How to Write a Letter to the Editor - Arizona’s SB 1070 and the Supreme Court
Good luck, thanks for writing, and remember, letters to the editor are read carefully by everyone from your
neighbors to the staff of your representatives in Congress. Your letter on behalf of migrants and refugees can have
a tremendous impact!
First, read the newspaper’s guidelines for letters to the editor, which you can find on their web site or in print. If
those instructions contradict what’s written below, follow the newspaper’s own guidelines.
Letters to the editor should only be sent to one publication, not several at a time.
Your letter should generally be no longer than 150 words. Remember to proofread carefully!
Many newspapers require that your letter refer to an article that has appeared in their publication within the last
seven days. Find an article related to your topic and list its title and date in the first sentence of your letter.
The editor will need to verify your identity, so your e-mail should include your full name, address, and phone
numbers. You can request that this information not be published.
Make your letter concise. Limit your writing to 2-3 paragraphs. Try sticking to the following format:
 In your first paragraph, introduce the issue you’re concerned about.
 In the second paragraph, include a few sentences to support your view.
 End with a summary of your position, and, if you can, a clever, punchy line.
Submit your letter by email if the publication allows it. Many newspapers will automatically delete emails with
attachments, so send the text within your email.
Sample Letter on SB1070
To the Editor:
I am writing in response to (“Article Title”) published (date). Extreme state laws like Arizona’s SB1070 are an
obstacle to achieving what America really needs, which is humane and comprehensive federal immigration reform.
The Supreme Court will soon rule on SB1070. The justices should strike down SB1070 because it undermines family
unity and threatens religious liberty by criminalizing charitable acts within the mission of religious organizations.
SB1070 is so extreme, in fact, that Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of
America, the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops filed a brief opposing it.
Whatever the court’s decision, it’s time for Congress to ensure there is one national immigration law, not a
confusing patchwork of 50 different ones. We need comprehensive immigration reform that meets the needs of
everyone, from churches to businesses to the police, while upholding human dignity.
Full Name, Address, Phone