Fall is my favorite season. I love sweater weather, chai tea, and golden leaves against a brilliant blue sky. But my very favorite fall tradition is still yet to come: Election Day, November 4. As people who care for our communities and the common good, voting is one of the most important things we can do—it is the ground floor of democracy.
Who we put in office has significant implications for our communities and the people our organizations serve. Elected officials have a say in the policies and funding of everything from housing to food assistance to transportation to education. If we truly want to make systemic change to these and the any number of issues nonprofits across Minnesota care about we have to take the first step and go to the polls.
Historically, young adults are among the least likely to vote. Four years ago, during the last midterm election, just 24 percent of voters aged 18-29 went to the polls. Turnout is higher during Presidential election years, 50 percent of young adults voted in 2012.
Fortunately, Minnesota has some of the highest voter turnout in the country. This is partly because of same day voter registration and early voting.
Not registered to vote? No problem! In Minnesota you can register at your polling place on Election Day.
The website www.mnvotes.org is a tremendous voting resource. You can get more detailed answers about same-day voter registration, early voting and free rides to the polls here. Also, enter in your address to find your polling location, a sample ballot, and a list of links to candidate websites. Look at the websites of candidates in your area to find their positions on issues, including if they mention issues you care about.
Then, spread the word. Encourage family, friends, coworkers and clients to vote. Your vote is your voice in our community and every voice counts.