Voter Engagement

Voter Engagement

Wed Jan 15, 2014

At a press conference less than three months before a critical city-wide vote, leaders ofWorking Together Jackson publicly endorsed the proposed 1% sales tax earmarked for infrastructure repairs across Jackson.  The weekend before the vote, leaders reached as many as 1,200 voters by phone.  Of those, about 1,000 pledged their support.  And on election day, some 90% of voters supported the new tax, far surpassing the most hopeful of predictions.  The Clarion Ledger credited Working Together Jackson with doing the “heavy lifting” of educating and turning out voters to pass this important initiative.

Jackson Residents Approve 1-Cent Sales TaxClarion-Ledger

1 Percent Sales Tax on Ballot TodayClarion Ledger


Tue Nov 4, 2008

In the 2008 Presidential Election, Ohio IAF projects in ColumbusDayton, and Lorain ran the largest volunteer-based non-partisan get-out-the-vote campaign in Ohio.  Independent analysis found that unlikely voters contacted by our over 1400 local volunteers were 80% more likely to vote than those not contacted -- a tremendous result that has made our face-to-face civic participation work a national model.


In the News


Mike Gecan, GOTV, party politics

Party Needs to Recommit to Average People, Not Financial Wizards, Stars

Thursday, November 10, 2016
New York Times

...the lessons of this election is to recommit itself to the vast majority of non-rock-star Americans who still live in physical space -- blocks, neighborhoods, subdivisions, trailer parks, workplaces, fading cities and aging suburbs and towns. The core issue for these Americans is the lack of long-term living wage work, especially for those who are not college educated....


SAISD, San Antonio schools, Texas IAF, living wages, children

COPS / Metro Fights for $450M Bond for SAISD Children

Tuesday, November 1, 2016
San Antonio Express-News & More

Only one month after raising municipal wages for the second year in a row in San Antonio, COPS / Metro is now fighting to leverage necessary funding for school improvements…$450 Million, to be precise.  Elaine Ayala of the San Antonio Express-News reported that two weekends before Election Day, dozens of COPS / Metro leaders block walked  – asking voters to scroll to the end of the ballot to the last two measures.  Leader Maria Tijerina explained that TRE funds would support after-school, summer and enrichment programs, freeing up money to help the district reach the $15 / hour wage they are fighting for....


Early Voting Locations in Cleveland, ATU, Board of Elections, march

Hundreds March to Cast Ballots, Protest Dearth of Early Voting Sites

Sunday, October 30, 2016
Cleveland.com

Several hundred voters marched to the Cuyahoga County Board of Elections on Sunday to cast ballots and protest the limited number of in-house early voting locations in Ohio.

The marchers departed at 2:30 p.m. from the Trinity Episcopal Cathedral and traveled a half-mile to the Board of Elections headquarters on Euclid Avenue.

Greater Cleveland Congregations and the Amalgamated Transit Union organized the event to encourage Cuyahoga County residents to vote early before the general election on Nov. 8...


Health District, Rio Grande Valley, Tier 1 Hospital, affordable healthcare

Valley Interfaith Gets Out The Vote for Health District

Sunday, October 23, 2016
The Monitor

Valley Interfaith is working hard to get parishioners to vote in favor of Proposition 1.

The faith-based nonprofit organization called a news conference Saturday to reiterate its stance on the creation of a healthcare district. Parishioners from a number of churches pledged their support and signed a proclamation that reflected their intentions.

“Valley Interfaith has long had a vision of a community that has a healthcare system that will take care of the most vulnerable — health care that will serve the uninsured, the elderly, our children and our working families,” Valley Interfaith leader Eddie Anaya said. “We believe that an educated vote will result in the passing of Proposition 1.”


Hirschman, 2015 Election, Trump, Sanders, Clinton, Gecan

By M. Gecan: Exit, Loyalty and Voice - a Frame to Understand the Appeal of Trump, Sanders and Clinton

Wednesday, June 15, 2016
NY Daily News

In a turbulent time, I find a measure of calm and clarity in the words of the late economist A.O. Hirschman, whose short book, “Exit, Voice and Loyalty” was published in 1970. Hirschman was born in Germany into a life of even greater turbulence than we are now experiencing. He escaped the Nazis, fought in the Spanish Civil War, served in the U.S. Army in World War II and afterwards, as a translator at the Nuremberg trials — and then went on to establish himself as a major figure in the field of economics and community development.

As a writer, he respected the complexities and varieties of the enterprises and nations he studied.

Hirschman pondered the options people have as consumers, members of voluntary associations or citizens of a republic — and defined three options available to all.

To me, they correspond to the three political figures shaping this election year.


Mayoral Race, accountability assembly, Mississippi IAF

Working Together Jackson to Hold Monday Mayor Meeting

Friday, June 10, 2016
Jackson Free Press

Working Together Jackson, a religious and community mega-group comprised of the heads of around 40 Jackson-area organizations, will sit down with Mayor Yarber on Monday to ask him about issues facing their constituents.

"We will be meeting with Mayor Yarber this coming Monday at 7:30 at Emmanuel Baptist church," Rev. Monsignor Elvin Sunds of St. Therese Catholic Church said at a press conference on Friday, June 10. "We are asking Mayor Yarber to work with us, which he has agreed to do, of course, and one of the things is what is happening with regard to the one percent sales tax that is supposed to be improving our streets."


Organizing in the UK, Citizens UK, elections, voters

Citizens UK Makes Westminster's Politicians Face Power of the People

Saturday, April 18, 2015
The Guardian

One of a number of alternative hustings trying to boost voter registration and turnout, and expanding the frontiers of conventional campaigning in the process, is Citizens UK.  It is an alliance of 350 schools, faith communities, unions and voluntary sector organisations in areas such as London, Birmingham and Cardiff that, among a number of issues, has pressed hard for the living wage. Its aim is to recruit, train, encourage and involve citizens of all ages in “actions” so they come to believe that what they do counts, not just at the ballot box but in shaping the kind of society in which they wish to live.

Karyn Storey, 18, has been a member since September. She is taking four A-levels at a local college and joined because “my parents are very community-minded and I want to build character”. Annalisa Mensah, 18, who is going to York to study law in October, says: “I’m young, black, female, so out of self-interest why wouldn’t I be passionate about active citizenship? I know it makes a difference. Citizens UK grows every day and I grow with it,” she smiles broadly. 


Valley Interfaith Project, VIP, community organizing in Arizona, organizing in Phoenix, Arizona IAF, Joe Rubio

VIP Wins AZ Candidates' Promises on Schools, Healthcare & Training

Friday, August 15, 2014
The Arizona Republic

Two hundred fifty leaders from Valley Interfaith Project piled into a church hall to challenge Republican and Democrat legislative candidates for Districts 23 and 28 to commit to supporting Medicaid expansion, school funding increases, and workforce development.  Most of the candidates committed to supporting VIP’s three-point agenda, but...


Clean Elections, Community Organizing in Jackson, Organizing in Mississippi

Jackson Leaders Secure Pledge for 'Clean Fight' in Mayoral Runoff

Thursday, April 10, 2014
Clarion Ledger & Jackson Free Press

Flanked by leaders of Working Together Jackson and a giant (signed) letter of commitment, Mayoral runoff candidates Chowe Lumumba and Tony Yarber pledged to run clean elections on the steps of City Hall. 


Community Organizing in Australia, Amy Tattersall

Sydney Alliance Launches Electoral Agenda

Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Sydney Alliance

Between 1,300 and 1,500 delegates from the Sydney Alliance convened to the sound of drums beaten by the Korean Tillers...


Payday Lending, Public Education, GOTV, El Paso, County Judge

EPISO & Border Interfaith Team Up to Challenge County Candidates

Monday, February 24, 2014
El Paso Times & Univision

In advance of the early March election for County judge and Commissioner positions, leaders of EPISO and Border Interfaith organized an accountability session to challenge them on issues that emerged hundreds of conversations with their constituents.  The El Paso Times reports the following:


Neighborhood Cleanup, Blight, Streetlights, Animal Control, Ramon Duran

TBO Confronts Commissioner Court Candidates in Del Rio, Texas

Tuesday, February 18, 2014
Del Rio News

Leaders of the Border Organization confronted Democratic Party candidates for two seats on the Val Verde County Commissioners Court, Precinct 2, asking them whether they would work with the organization to address the clearing of dirty lots, demolition of abandoned homes, lighting on dark streets and roundup of stray animals...


Payday Lending, higher education, mass incarceration, environmental protection, Together Baton Rouge, Northern and Central Louisiana Interfaith, Jeremiah Group

300 Leaders Make Plans to Disrupt Louisiana Legislative Session

Monday, February 17, 2014
American Press & Times Picayune

Leaders from IAF organizations across Louisiana gathered at Shiloh Baptist Church Saturday, February 15 for a conference that aims to disrupt the status quo at the legislature this year...


Voter Engagement, Poverty

Barack and Mitt, as I knew them (By Arnie Graf)

Sunday, September 30, 2012
New York Daily News

In one of the more famous put-downs in modern political history, during a 1988 debate, vice-presidential candidate Lloyd Bentsen told Dan Quayle, who had just compared himself to JFK, “Senator, you are no Jack Kennedy.”