THE ALABAMA LEGISLATIVE PAGE PROGRAM
The Alabama Legislature offers a unique opportunity for young people to participate in the legislative process through its Legislative Page Program.
Pages are young men and ladies, ages 12-18, who assist each house of the Legislature during its sessions. Like so many other facets of the legislative process in Alabama, the use of Pages is a legacy of the British Parliamentary system. Pages have played an integral role in the Alabama Legislature since the early 19th Century.
The duties of a Page are varied, but normally consist of assisting the Members of the House and Senate, and certain staff members, by performing errands on the floor of each house and during committee meetings. These errands usually include obtaining copies of bills, resolutions, amendments, substitutes and other official documents, as well as delivering messages to and from Members. Therefore, Pages are provided the rare privilege to work on the floor of the House or Senate, in the midst of legislative action.
Both the House and Senate have a Page Coordinator, who supervise the work of the Pages employed in their respective body.
In addition to being afforded the ability to play an active role in the legislative process, service as a Page allows the student to meet other young men and young ladies from around the state.
How To Become A Page:
In order to become a Page, one must be sponsored by a Member of the House or Senate.
The first step toward this goal is to express to your parents, parent or legal guardian your desire to become a Legislative Page. If they agree, they can contact your House Member or Senator about sponsorship.
In addition, since most of the sessions of the Legislature are held during the school year, potential Pages must be excused from their schoolwork for the three-day period in which they will be serving at the State House.
Therefore, the process for becoming a Page is three-fold:
- Express your desire to be a Page to your parents, parent or legal guardian and obtain their consent.
- Have your parents, parent or legal guardian contact your House Member or Senator about sponsorship of you as either a House Page or Senate Page.
- If your House Member or Senator agrees to sponsor you, permission must be obtained from your school for you to be excused for the three days you will be working as a Page.
Being A Page:
Once sponsored and properly enrolled, each Page works for a three-day period (normally Tuesday - Thursday).
The parents, parent or legal guardian of a Page is responsible for arranging for lodging for the Page. Your sponsoring House Member or Senator can often help with making such arrangements. In addition, Pages should bring with them sufficient money for the purchase of all meals during their stay in Montgomery.
Once sponsored, the Page will be sent instructions on when and where to report for work. The Page Coordinator for the appropriate body in which the Page will be employed, will provide an orientation for Pages, upon arrival, and will fully supervise Pages during working hours.
Prospective Pages should be aware that a dress code applies to all Members and Staff of the Alabama Legislature. As temporary employees, Pages must comply with such dress code while at the State House.
For young men, the dress code calls for dress pants with a coat & tie, and dress shoes.
For young ladies, the dress code allows dresses, suits, skirts with blouse and blazer/jacket, and slack suits. Dress shoes should also be worn. Mini-skirts, sun-back dresses and dresses with the back out are not allowed.
Tennis shoes and denim are not allowed for Pages, whether young men or young ladies.
Unless called into Special Session by the Governor, the Alabama Legislature's meeting schedule, during the current quadrennium, is as follows (all times noon):
- 2011 Organizational Session (10 days): Beginning 2nd Tuesday in January
- 2011 Regular Session (105 calendar days): Beginning 1st Tuesday in March
- 2012 Regular Session (105 calendar days): Beginning 1st Tuesday in February
- 2013 Regular Session (105 calendar days): Beginning 1st Tuesday in February
- 2014 Regular Session (105 calendar days): Beginning 2nd Tuesday in January
Should you have any questions relating to the Legislative Page Program, have your parents, parent or legal guardian contact your House or Senate Member.
Remember: Service as a Page for the Alabama Legislature is a great honor, and should only be pursued by those students, ages 12 - 18, who are seriously interested in Alabama government, and wishing to actively participate in the legislative process.