As an organizer for the ACLU of Arkansas Voter Protection Project, the most critical and rewarding part of my job is educating, encouraging and motivating voters on the importance of voting in every election, but especially this election.
The right to vote is the foundation of every constitutional right, and it’s a right that people of color have never been able to afford to take for granted, especially in the South.
Since the moment Black people won the franchise, certain groups of politicians have been interfering with that right and in some cases revoking that right for certain segments of our population. Their violence against the vote include rampant lies and misleading narratives, and tactics from voter fraud to vote by mail restrictions and other acts of voter supression. One out of every 13 Black Americans has lost their right to vote due to felony disenfranchisement, but we're fighting back.
In 2020 the ACLU of Arkansas has launched an all-out defense to educate voters about their voting rights and encourage people to the polls.
Through grassroots events, phone banks, and digital advertising, we’re reaching more than 100,000 voters across Arkansas. Our outreach has focused on Black, LatinX, and poor voters in rural Arkansas communities whose voting rights are often the first to be infringed.
As we talk to voters across the state, we're seeing unprecedented enthusiasm from Arkansans who are committed to making their voices heard. The movement for Black lives has already changed the world with its voice – and now we have the opportunity to change the world through our votes. When we vote, we can elect leaders who will defend against police violence, abuse and misconduct, reduce or eliminate mass incarceration, and protect our communities from the devastating impact of COVID-19. That’s why we all need to vote like our rights and our lives depend on it, because they do.
So however you choose to vote – don’t wait. Vote early and in-person if you’re able. If you’re voting by mail, make sure to return your ballot as soon as possible.
Remember to bring photo ID to the polls or remember to vote by provisional ballots if you don't have an ID on you when you get to the polls. Save the election protection hotline – 1-866-OUR-VOTE in English and 1-479-763-2822 for Spanish – if you have problems voting.
Our website has all the information you need to cast a ballot and make sure it counts.
A better future is waiting for us at the polls and we must continue to fight for it. Drive, ride, run, walk, bike or crawl to the polls, take a neighbor, friend or stranger. We're looking forward to seeing you there.
Our Vote is Our Voice and Our Voice is Our Power.