March 6, 2019

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UUP launches ad campaign to close TAP gap

      CLICK HERE to send an e-letter to your elected officials urging them to set aside $65 million in the 2019-20 state budget to fully fund the Tuition Assistance Program

      Securing an additional $65 million in the 2019-20 budget to close the TAP gap is the focus of UUP’s new social media ad campaign.

      The 30-second video ad, above, titled “Sixty Five,” launched today and will run through March 19. The ad will target legislators, legislative staff, political insiders and others in Albany, using a mix of social media, geo-targeted ads focused on the state Capitol.

      The ads, which will appear on Connected TV, Facebook, Instagram and other social media outlets, will focus on UUP members, union-friendly households, educators, and pro-education advocates in the Capital Region area.

      Viewers will be taken to a landing page on UUP’s website where they can send an electronic letter to their elected officials urging them to support full state funding of the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP).

      TAP provides access to a public college education, something that is still out of reach for many qualified students. Yet, the state, which covered the full cost of TAP until 2011, has reduced its TAP funding, forcing SUNY campuses to make up the shortfall. Now, the TAP gap has grown to $65 million and it continues to widen each year.

      “This unfunded mandate is yet another cost SUNY campuses are forced to bear,” said UUP President Fred Kowal. “If the state covered the full cost of TAP, our campuses could use those lost TAP funds to increase course offerings and student services, and hire more full-time faculty.

      “We’re hoping this ad campaign will help bring this issue to light and let legislators know how the TAP gap impacts all SUNY students,” he said.

      The ad was produced by UUP’s Media and Publications Department and GPS Impact, a Philadelphia-based production company that has produced campaign ads for North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, and has created ads for Working Americans for Affordable Health Care and Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

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