Our vote is our voice. But efforts to exclude individuals from the electoral process lie at the heart of the effort to increase voter engagement in the United States.
Buoyed by the US Supreme Court’s 2013 Shelby v. Holder decision, which gutted the landmark 1965 Voting Rights Act, lawmakers in states around the country have passed dozens of laws to make it more difficult for people — including people of color, women, individuals with disabilities, and LGBTQ individuals — to vote. The result? It has been increasingly difficult for communities to elect diverse officials who represent their values and have their best interests at heart. In response, NCJW is working to pass legislation to modernize our election systems and make it easier to register and cast a ballot.
But voter engagement is more encompassing than just voting. It means understanding the issues at stake and encouraging every person to contribute to the political process.
Throughout its history, NCJW has worked to expand voting rights, drive voter turnout, educate on the issues, and engage advocates. Our work continues today, with a renewed focus on developing grassroots networks and leaders to build power in their communities. Our ultimate goal? That every eligible voter is able to register to vote, cast a ballot, and engage in all levels of government in a deep and meaningful way.