So often, it seems as if the government by the people, for the people cannot seem to align itself with the schedule of the people. Be it carving out time to attend government meetings in person to hear about the week-to-week issues or having to find childcare or work coverage to get out to the polls and stand in line to vote, the accessibility of certain civic practices has struggled in the last few years to meet the people where they are.
The rule of thumb for civic engagement has traditionally been “show up.” This is more often than not through attending community meetings, door knocking, attending rallies, etc. Now that the community cannot engage in-person, governments are working to create opportunities to engage people from the safety of their homes as best meets their personal schedules.
Video conferencing for many government meetings is more accessible than ever. There are also live question and comment features for citizens to actively engage as they may at an in person meeting. Recordings for those who cannot make it in real time are available, and those with comments can reach their representatives through phone calls, letters, or through Facebook to voice their thoughts.
Mail-in ballots are not only readily accessible to all citizens but encouraged. Whereas so many previously dreaded braving the poll lines to cast their vote, mail-in ballots allow citizens to vote as is most convenient for their schedules. It also allows more time for voters to research the candidates across the ballot to make informed and confident decisions.
This is the chance to get involved more easily than ever before. Attend some meetings, share your thoughts, and be sure to vote! The way we engage today will shape the community we have tomorrow.
“By voting, we add our voice to the chorus that forms opinions and the basis for actions” – Jens Stoltenberg
Resource Available: YOUR VOTE
Your vote matters! Over 1.2 million Pennsylvanians have submitted their mail-in ballot. You must apply by May 18 at 11:59p.m. to vote in the June 2 primary election. It takes most folks less than 10 minutes to register.
Register or update your registration today at Register.VotesPA.com.
Not sure if you're registered? Check your status at VotesPA.com/Status.
Sign up at VotesPA.com/ApplyMailBallot
Be the Helper to the Helpers
Poll Workers Needed: The Lancaster County Board of Elections is in need of poll workers for the June 2nd General Primary. Many of its usual poll workers are considered in the high-risk group and have expressed concern of working in the polls due to Coronavirus.
Full-day Judges of Election and Inspectors of Election are especially needed. Clerks are welcome. The Board is presently looking in: the city, East Cocalico, East Donegal, Lancaster Township, Manheim Township, Millersville, Strasburg Borough, West Hempfield and West Lampeter.
Poll workers do not need to live in the precinct where they work.
Those registered to vote in Lancaster County or seventeen years old with parental permission may contact April Wefler at 717-299-8298 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Online poll worker training is provided. Compensation ranges between $100 and $160 for the day.
For further details on election duties, visit the Poll Worker Fact Sheet at the following link: https://www.co.lancaster.pa.us/302/Poll-Workers.
Challenge for the Weekend: Check in with 3 friends and check that they are registered, if not, send them resources for how to register
WHEW! What a week! Not voting related, but some good news is that 14 more Lancaster restaurants opened for carryout this week. Enjoy the wide range of international cuisine that is signature to our community.