“Too many people fought too hard to make sure all citizens of all colors, races, ethnicities, genders, and abilities can vote to think that not voting somehow sends a message.” – Luis Gutierrez, American Politician
Voting is a Challenge for the Homeless
As we near the November 2020 Presidential election, political groups from all arenas are reaching out to influence as many of “their people” as possible to vote in this year’s election. Voting is fairly simple in the U.S. for those that want to. All it requires is proof of U.S. citizenship, verification of a residential address within a voting sector (or a state-approved alternative address), evidence of length of residency, and several other requirements that vary from state to state.
For most U.S. populations, those requirements aren’t a problem, except for one: The Homeless who rarely have a steady address and often move around depending on weather conditions, shelter availability, and other factors. Yet, if we take Gutierrez’ quote at face value, it’s important to make sure every homeless person has the same opportunity to vote as any other American.
With the volatile political environment stemming across our nation, it seems that every vote really does count this year. And advocates for the homeless are doing their best to make it easier for that population to take advantage of one of our country’s most precious rights: The Right To Vote!
The Washington Post released an article by Justin Wm. Moyer titled Voting is a challenge for the homeless. Advocates are trying to make it easier. They interviewed a few advocacy groups tasked with helping the homeless in the D.C. area fill out voter registration cards, and spoke with several homeless people to gain their perspective on why they are interested in voting and who they are leaning towards voting for.
A quote in the article from Christy Respress, the Pathways executive director, sums up why advocacy groups are doing everything they can to ensure the homeless population has a voice in this year’s election: “Our entire mission and model is based on listening to the people we serve. Listening is not always there at the larger societal level. We feel there is no better way to rectify that than to register people to vote – educate them, let them know that their vote is their voice.”
Moyer’s article is well worth reading and contains a lot of great insight from both the advocacy groups and the homeless community. To read it, click here.
We, at Sheltering Grace, service homeless mothers and babies, and welcome your donations. Please contact us at 678-337-7858 to learn how you can help. Each mother and baby will be truly grateful for your kindness.
Sheltering Grace Ministry, Ltd. is a 501(c)3 Ltd. non-profit ministry. We resolve the initial crisis of homelessness by providing mothers with a safe place to live during pregnancy. We also equip them with the tools they need to improve decision-making, enhance employment options, and increase family income to act responsibly as the head of their household. All of our services develop their self-reliance to progress to permanent independent living. Please join us in renewing and rebuilding the lives of these brave women – #Be1of5000.