Advancement Project National Office: 'We Must Shed Light on Discriminatory Voting Practices Now' - Advancement Project - Advancement Project

Advancement Project National Office: ‘We Must Shed Light on Discriminatory Voting Practices Now’

National Civil Rights Organizations Launch WeVoteWeCount.org to Collect Stories of Voter Suppression, Drive Change Ahead of 2020 Presidential Election

Ahead of the 2020 presidential election, Advancement Project National Office, in partnership the W.K. Kellogg Racial Equity Anchor Collaborative, launched WeVoteWeCount.org, a new online platform allowing voters to share their experiences facing interference at the polls, difficulties registering to vote, and other barriers to voting. The new website is an effort to demand action guaranteeing full voter protections for every citizen during the 2020 presidential and future elections.

The launch of WeVoteWeCount.org comes ahead of a Congressional voting rights hearing on April 25, led by Congresswoman Marcia Fudge (D-OH). During the House Administration Committee hearing, expert witnesses, including directly impacted voters, will provide testimony and data on voting rights.

With the weakening of the Voting Rights Act by the Supreme Court’s Shelby County v. Holder decision, states across the country have implemented restrictive voting policies that disproportionately harm communities of color. WeVoteWeCount.org amplifies the voices of those experiencing unfair barriers to the ballot box by allowing the submission of audio recordings, written pieces, photos or short videos. Voter stories will be published on the site and compiled in a comprehensive report that will be publicly released this summer. The platform and report will draw attention to discriminatory voting practices experienced by voters across the country.

“Through our long-standing voter protection work in Georgia, Florida and Missouri, we know Black and Brown communities disproportionately faced barriers to the ballot box during the 2016 and 2018 elections. These barriers were intentionally erected to make it harder for them to vote, “said Denise Lieberman, Director of Advancement Project National Office’s Power and Democracy Program. “From strict voter ID policies, to the closure of polling locations, to voter intimidation, we saw how voters of colors faced more barriers than their white counterparts. By launching WeVoteWeCount.org, we aim to amplify the voices of voters and clearly demonstrate why the Voting Rights Act must be restored.”

A spokesman for the W.K. Kellogg Racial Equity Anchor Collaborative said in a statement, “Every American should have a constitutional right to vote, and every one of those votes should count. WeVoteWeCount.org will make sure every story of voting interference counts, too. We encourage voters from all walks of life who have faced barriers to voting to visit WeVoteWeCount.Org to share their story. By drawing back the curtain on discriminatory voting practices across the country, WeVoteWeCount.org empowers voters to collectively use their voices to spark real change ahead of 2020.”

Since the Shelby County v. Holder decision, several states including Alabama, Texas, Mississippi, North Carolina, and others instituted restrictive voting measures that unfairly target and affect communities of color, impeding their abilities to register and vote.

Voter suppression tactics also affect local funding for schools, fire departments and other public services, as voter turnout data is used by the U.S. Census Bureau to inform crucial investment decisions. If communities of color and other historically underrepresented voters aren’t counted at the polls, they also won’t count in the census, which can have devastating consequences for their neighborhoods. With the presidential election and census approaching in 2020, now is the time to address discriminatory voting practices that prevent Americans from casting a ballot and being counted.

To submit a story or learn more about this critical voting rights effort, please visit WeVoteWeCount.org.

Advancement Project is a multi-racial civil rights organization. Founded by a team of veteran civil rights lawyers in 1999, Advancement Project was created to develop and inspire community-based solutions based on the same high quality legal analysis and public education campaigns that produced the landmark civil rights victories of earlier eras.

About WeVoteWeCount.Org

WeVoteWeCount.org is a digital platform designed to give voters a place to share stories of interference at the polls, difficulties registering to vote, and other barriers to voting. Communities of color have faced a longstanding history of racially discriminatory laws that limit access to voting; WeVoteWeCount.org will shed light on these unfair practices and spark change ahead of the 2020 presidential election and 2020 census so that every voice is heard – and counted. WeVoteWeCount.org is an initiative launched by the Racial Equity Anchor Collaborative: Advancement Project, Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum, Demos, Faith In Action, NAACP, National Congress of American Indians, National Urban League, Race Forward and UnidosUS.

About the W.K. Kellogg Racial Equity Anchor Collaborative

Advancement Project, Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum, Demos, Faith in Action, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, National Congress of American Indians, National Urban League, Race Forward, and UnidosUS are a collaborative of nine leading national racial equity anchor organizations (the Anchors) supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Together, we work to promote racial equity, advance racial healing, and ensure that all children, families, and communities have opportunities to reach their full potential.

KEEP READING

Democratizing Voter Protection

  Access to the ballot gives Black and Brown communities power in the matters that affect their lives. State and local election officials that administer elections are critical players in ensuring access to the ballot. Year-round accountability with these election officials and following up on potential barriers is the only way to ensure smooth and inclusive elections. Advancement Project continues to lead the charge for free, fair and assessable elections, learning from the failed election administration practices and partisan political practices from the 2000 election debacle. We have a permanent presence on the ground working alongside grassroots and faith based civic engagement organizations, which register,…

Read More
Racial Justice Groups Take Legal Action Against FL Governor Ron DeSantis Demanding Changes to Upcoming Elections Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

CONTACT Jeralyn Cave, Advancement Project National Office, [email protected], (202) 921-7321 Shanae Bass, Demos, [email protected] Christiaan Perez, LatinoJustice PRLDEF, [email protected], (212) 739-7581     Civil Rights Organizations Renew Call for Emergency Accommodations for State’s August and November Election.  TALLAHASSEE – Today, a coalition of racial justice organizations renewed legal action against Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and Secretary of State Laurel M. Lee, demanding emergency accommodations to the state’s election procedures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The updated complaint, filed by Dream Defenders, New Florida Majority, Organize Florida, Advancement Project National Office, Demos and…

Read More
Racial Justice Organizations to GA Governor Brian Kemp: Make Emergency Accommodations for Upcoming Elections Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

CONTACT Jeralyn Cave [email protected] (202) 921-7321 Civil Rights Organizations Demand Action to Ensure All Voters Can Safely Participate in GA Presidential Primary and State Elections ATLANTA, GA—Today, New Georgia Project and Advancement Project National Office filed a letter with Georgia Governor Brian Kemp and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, demanding immediate changes to the state’s upcoming primary election procedures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The letter requests accommodations for voters statewide and demands action to protect the voting rights of those directly and indirectly impacted by Georgia’s first public health state…

Read More
Racial Justice Organizations Issue Statement on Second Florida Ruling Denying Extension of Vote-By-Mail Deadline Amidst COVID-19 Pandemic

CONTACT Jeralyn Cave, Advancement Project National Office, [email protected], (202) 921-7321 Shanae Bass, Demos, [email protected] Christiaan Perez, LatinoJustice PRLDEF, [email protected], (212) 739-7581 Litigation is still ongoing to seek accommodations for future elections TALLAHASSEE, FL—On Wednesday, March 18, 2020, a U.S. District Court judge for the Northern District of Florida denied a second motion filed by a group of racial justice organizations to protect the right to vote of all Floridians impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Advancement Project National Office, Demos, and LatinoJustice PRLDEF filed the latest motion on Tuesday on behalf of Dream Defenders, New Florida Majority,…

Read More
Civil Rights Organizations File Lawsuit to Extend Florida Primary Election Vote-By-Mail Deadline Amidst COVID-19 Outbreak

CONTACT Jeralyn Cave, Advancement Project National Office, [email protected], (202) 921-7321 Shanae Bass, Demos, [email protected] Christiaan Perez, LatinoJustice PRLDEF, [email protected], (212) 739-7581 Group wants vote-by-mail deadline extended to March 27, citing state’s failure to make accommodation for those impacted by the current public health crisis TALLAHASSEE, FL—Civil rights organizations have filed a renewed petition in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida against Governor Ron DeSantis and Secretary of State Laurel M. Lee to require the state to extend the vote-by-mail deadline for Tuesday’s Presidential Preference Primary in Florida in the wake of the…

Read More
Racial Justice Organizations Issue Statement on Florida Ruling Denying Emergency Voter Accommodations Amidst COVID-19 Pandemic

CONTACT Jeralyn Cave, [email protected] 202-728-9557 TALLAHASSEE, FL—On Tuesday, March 17, 2020, Judge Robert Hinkle of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida denied a motion filed by a coalition of racial justice organizations to protect the right to vote of all Floridians impacted by the COVID-19 Pandemic. The complaint, filed by Dream Defenders, New Florida Majority, Organize Florida represented by Advancement Project National Office, Demos, and LatinoJustice PRLDEF, requested Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and Secretary of State Laurel Lee extend the deadline to request and submit Vote-by-Mail ballots, extend early voting, and allowing…

Read More
Civil Rights Organizations File Lawsuit to Ensure Floridians Impacted by COVID-19 Can Participate in Presidential Primary Election

CONTACT Jeralyn Cave, Advancement Project National Office, [email protected], (202) 921-7321 Shanae Bass, Demos, [email protected] Christiaan Perez, LatinoJustice PRLDEF, [email protected], (212) 739-7581   TALLAHASSEE—Today, a coalition of racial justice organizations filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida against Governor Ron DeSantis and Secretary of State Laurel M. Lee for refusing to make reasonable voting accommodations for Floridians impacted by COVID-19. In a motion submitted by Dream Defenders, New Florida Majority, Organize Florida, Advancement Project National Office, Demos, and LatinoJustice PRLDEF plaintiffs allege the state’s failure to extend vote-by-mail deadlines, adjust…

Read More
Racial Justice Orgs to FL Governor Ron DeSantis: Make Emergency Accommodations for Presidential Primary Election Due to COVID-19 Pandemic

CONTACT Jeralyn Cave, Advancement Project National Office, [email protected] (202) 921-7321 Shanae Bass, Demos, [email protected] Civil Rights Organizations Threaten Legal Action to Ensure All Voters Can Participate in FL Presidential Primary Election TALLAHASSEE, FL—Yesterday, a coalition of racial justice organizations filed a letter with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and Secretary of State Laurel M. Lee, demanding immediate changes to the state’s upcoming Presidential Primary Election procedures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The letter, submitted by Dream Defenders, New Florida Majority, Organize Florida, Advancement Project National Office, and Demos requests accommodations for voters statewide and threatens legal action…

Read More
Letter to the State of Florida

Secretary of State Laurel M. Lee Department of State R.A. Gray Building 500 South Bronough Street Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0250 [email protected] (850) 245-6500 Governor Ron DeSantis State of Florida The Capitol 400 S. Monroe St. Tallahassee, FL 32399-0001 [email protected] (850) 717-9337 Dear Governor DeSantis and Secretary Lee: Dream Defenders, New Florida Majority, Organize Florida, Advancement Project National Office, and Dēmos are writing to express our concern about the impact of the coronavirus, or COVID-19, pandemic on the upcoming Presidential Preference Primary this Tuesday, March 17, 2020. We understand that…

Read More
Advancement Project National Office Celebrates Major Victory in Missouri Voter ID Supreme Court Case

In a 5-2 decision in Priorities USA v. Missouri, the state Supreme Court struck down a provision requiring voters to present identification with a photo to cast a ballot.

Read More