The League of Women Voters turns 100 years old on Friday, Feb. 14. To celebrate, local and state leagues around the country are taking to the streets for a nationwide day of action called “Women Power the Vote.”
“The League was founded by suffrage leaders 100 years ago to help American women exercise their new right to vote,” said Liz Forrest, president of the League of Women Voters Pike County. “So on Friday, we’re celebrating by joining Leagues across the country in demonstrating the power of women to achieve a more perfect democracy.”
“Women Power the Vote” celebrates the league’s 100-year milestone by bringing together leagues in over 750 communities across the country with one unified day of action.
“For 100 years, leagues have registered voters, informed their communities on the issues, advocated in their legislatures, and helped shape their communities and this country,” said Chris Carson, president of the board of the League of Women Voters of the United States. “We only saw it fitting that we should celebrate this milestone with a coordinated day of the kind of grassroots activism our members and supporters have embraced for an entire century.”
For this Day of Action, LWV Pike has chosen to initiate a non-partisan, social media blitz to spread the message of 2019 changes to Pennsylvania voting laws as well as the importance of answering the census.
“To us, responding to the census questionnaire should be a no-brainer, because for every under-reported resident of a county, state, or region, that area loses out on roughly $2,000 in federal funding per undercounted resident per year for ten years," Forrest said. "That’s roughly $20,000 per undercounted person that can be directed to infrastructure improvements, public education, or other community needs.”
Making voting more accessible
However, educating the public on changes in voting option availability is the primary goal of the Day of Action. LWV Pike will create a group of boosted posts and paid advertising with non-partisan messaging and links to websites where more information may be found or action performed to take advantage of the following:
Mail-in ballots that any Pennsylvania voter can use – "No excuse for not voting now!"
Extended voter registration to within 15 days prior to an election.
No straight party voting – Yes, voters may have to think about their vote now. However, the league provides an information portal that contains candidate supplied information at Vote411.org.
Online voter registration – This is not new this year, but many individuals still do not know it exists in Pennsylvania at VotesPA.com.
“We hope that voters and administrators of other civic organizations will share our posts when they see them on Facebook or other platform, or if they visit our website (LWVPike.org) or Facebook page (facebook.com/LWVPikePA), they can find materials that they can share in private emails to friends and email lists,” said Forrest. “We’re celebrating our history by taking action for our future. Our founders achieved the impossible by getting the 19th Amendment passed 100 years ago, so we honor their fight by continuing to push our democracy forward so that every voter – regardless of gender, race or economic situation in life – can play a critical role in shaping our country.”
LWV Pike's Feb. 5 presentation at Pike County Commissioners meeting is available on Facebook and its website.
The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy. Membership is open to men and women of all ages and has 750 affiliates across the county, the League is one of the nation’s most trusted organizations.