While planning voter engagement activities this election season, know that several free, online resources are already available to further strengthen your organizing. Some of the most significant resources are detailed below, including some with helpful state-specific information.
Bolder Advocacy promotes active engagement in elections and lobbying by giving nonprofits and foundations the confidence to advocate effectively and by protecting their right to do so. They work to demystify and decode advocacy by giving organizations knowledge and tools. Bolder Advocacy makes it clear that nonprofits should not shy away from electoral activities. They lay out the differences in what organizations can and cannot do under IRS tax rules for nonprofits.
For more information, visit: https://bolderadvocacy.org
Fair Elections Legal Network (FELN)
The Fair Elections Legal Network (FELN) is a national, nonpartisan voting rights, legal support and election reform organization whose mission is to remove barriers to registration and voting for traditionally underrepresented constituencies. FELN works to improve overall election administration through reforms. They also provide legal and technical assistance to voter mobilization organizations. Their state-specific resources include information on voter registration deadlines, ID requirements for voting, and how to vote early or by mail in your state.
For more information, visit: http://fairelectionsnetwork.com.
The Brennan Center for Justice understands that voting is the foundation of our democracy. They fight to preserve and expand the right to vote for every eligible citizen. Through practical policy proposals, litigation, advocacy, and communications, the Brennan Center works to make sure that voting is free, fair, and accessible for all Americans. They track and publish analyses of voting rights policies in every state legislature across the country.
For more information, visit: https://brennancenter.org.
Nonprofit VOTE partners with America’s nonprofits to help the people they serve participate and vote. They are the largest source of nonpartisan resources to help nonprofits integrate voter engagement into their ongoing activities and services. Their excellent library of online resources includes a Voter Participation Starter Kit and a 50-state Voting in Your State Guide, as well as helpful guides on planning a voter engagement program, engaging candidates, and staying nonpartisan in your activities.
For more information, visit: http://nonprofitvote.org.
VOTE411.org, a resource of the League of Women Voters
VOTE411.org is an online voter education resource of the League of Women Voters and a “one-stop-shop” for election-related information. The site provides a voter registration tool, a nationwide polling place lookup, and ballot guides for voters in every state. The website will be updated and expanded in 2018, with information on ballot questions and candidates for office. This level of information will be available for every voter in America, down to at least the statewide level, for both primary and general elections.
For more information, visit: http://vote411.org.
The You Don’t Need a Home to Vote Campaign seeks to promote voting access by specifically engaging people experiencing homelessness in the democratic process. Online resources include a 50-state breakdown of how homeless people can exercise their right to become a registered voter, how homeless service agencies can incorporate voter registration into their client intake process, and how homelessness advocates can facilitate both comfort at the polling site and familiarity in casting a ballot.
For more information, visit: http://nationalhomeless.org/campaigns/voting.