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California Participation Project Voter Participation Training.

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Presentation on theme: "California Participation Project Voter Participation Training."— Presentation transcript:

1 California Participation Project Voter Participation Training

2 State and local voter engagement initiatives – Expanding the role of America’s nonprofits in voting and elections Closing participation gaps for underrepresented and lower turnout communities

3 Our California Partners

4 Nonpartisan Nonprofit Voter Engagement

5 Gap in Turnout in CA - 2006 Voter Participation in California for 2006 Midterm Election Percent turnout of citizen eligible voters

6 Rise in Voter Turnout in CA

7 It Matters Who Votes

8 Why Me?

9 Size of Sector 1.6 million active organizations Employing 14 million people Recruiting 65 million volunteers annually And serving millions every day

10 And Reach…. Unique and trusting relationships with the communities you serve. Have a vested interest in ensuring that the priorities of your communities are represented Ability to integrate voter outreach into ongoing activities

11 A Movement for Democracy

12 Clout for Your Nonprofit

13 Power for Your Community

14 One Rule to Remember 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations must remain NONPARTISAN.

15 Remaining Nonpartisan Do use nonpartisan voter participation to build more powerful and engaged communities DON’TS – as 501c3 organization…  Oppose or Endorse a candidate running for office  Give resources ($$ etc) to candidates  Rank candidates on an issue to bias towards one candidate  Tell people how to vote or which party to affiliate with Helpful Resources: Nonprofits, Voting and Elections Toolkit Alliance for Justice:1-866-NPLOBBY

16 Ballot Measures Ballot measures are laws not candidates 501c3 nonprofits can support or oppose ballot measures Advocacy around ballot measures is considered a lobbying activity, subject to normal lobbying limits

17 What is Nonpartisan Voter Engagement?

18 Creating a Plan For Your Organization AGENDA I. Making a Plan II.Voter Registration III.Voter Education IV.Get out the Vote

19 Behind the Plan Get Buy In: Executive Director or Board of Directors Use voter toolkit Identify a point person: Program staff, public policy, direct service, communications staff Keep it Simple Plan Around Election Deadlines: September – voter reg & education October – voter education & GOTV

20 Assess Your Voter Engagement Resources and Challenges YOUR NONPROFIT Who’s Involved: Front office staff, volunteers & interns, program staff, communications team, partners TARGET Who is your Audience: Staff, Board, Volunteers and Constituents COMMUNICATE Points of Contacts: How you’ll reach your audience? INTEGRATE Where: points of service, classes & trainings, meetings, community events

21 Step 1: Voter Registration Like joining a gym… …there’s a lot more to do to get in shape.

22 Step 1: Voter Registration  Registration Deadline is October 18, 2010  Focus on Month before the Deadline  Updating Registration is as Important as New  Start with your Staff  Vote by mail Helpful Resources: A Nonprofit’s Guide to Voter Registration

23 Voter Registration You can Register to Vote if you are: A U.S. citizen At least 18 years old by the next election Not serving time for a felony or still on parole for a felony You will need to re-register if: You have moved. You have changed your name. You want to change the political party you chose on your last registration form. Helpful Resource: – register, check registration, & more

24 Step 1: Voter Registration Decide your Approach: Level 1: Publicize and Promote Voter reg deadlines and how-to’s Level 2: Do Registration on Site Incorporate into your ongoing activities and constituent interactions Level 3: Mobilize & Partner Identify and collaborate with partners in your community

25 Step 2: Voter Education Conducting Nonpartisan voter education efforts with your communities. Upcoming Webinar: Voter Education For Nonprofits – September 9 & 23

26 Voter Education -On the Voting Process Display or distribute sample ballots, voter guides and voter assistance hotline information When: Election date, vote by mail deadlines, polling hours Where: Finding your polling place How: Voting equipment, how to vote absentee, where to get help voting Special Circumstances: Ex-offender Helpful Resources: CA Secretary of State,, sample ballots

27 Voter Education -On the Issues DO educate your community on the issues that matter to your organization. DO educate all the candidates on issues that matter to the people you serve. Do advocate and educate on Ballot Measures – you can take a position DON’T tell voters whose best on your issue Helpful Resources: Easy Voter Guide,, CGS Video Voter

28 Voter Education -On Candidates DO distribute sample ballots showing all state and county races DO co-sponsor a candidate forum or do a candidate questionnaire DO give people nonpartisan voter guides, lists of websites of all candidates, etc. DON’T rate candidate’s positions on issues at election time Helpful Resource: A Nonprofit’s Guide to Hosting a Candidate Forum

29 Step 3: Get-Out-The-Vote Make it Personal: conversations about voting Give Voters the Assistance they Need: help reduce common barriers to voting Turn Up the (nonpartisan) Volume: final days before an election Identify a Message: make a connection & avoid negative messages Upcoming Webinar: GOTV & Election Day for Nonprofits – October 14

30 Step 3: Get-Out-The-Vote Activity Ideas for the Last 2 Weeks Before the Election Create Visibility: put up posters Provide Help: prepare staff, ask about voting, rides to the polls, call constituents Raise the Stakes: use all forms of communication, integrate more, provide translated material On Election Day: remind people, allow staff to do GOTV activities or volunteer as poll workers Helpful Resource: A dozen easy ways to get out the vote

31 Why We Vote Have a Reason to Vote Personal Contact From family, friend, nonprofit Low Barriers It’s easy and accessible A habit learned from family and community

32 Voter Participation Training & Resource Fair September 22, 2010 ★ Learn easy steps to integrate nonpartisan voter participation into your ongoing work. ★ Get up-to-date resources and materials on voter education and voting rights. ★ Meet local nonprofit leaders and experts in the field of voting and elections. Date: September 22, 2010 Time: 9:00 AM to Noon Location: Redwood Room The California Endowment's Center for Healthy Communities 1000 N. Alameda St. Los Angeles, CA 90012 More Info:

33 Questions? Marcy Koukhab Sarah Pillsbury Project CoordinatorProject Partner California Participation Project (213) 346-3291

34 Activity Planning Breakouts Barriers to Voting for Patients Best Practices for Addressing those Barriers Challenges for Addressing those Barriers

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