Podcast, Videos, Website and Social Media Activity Encourage Member Engagement in Democratic Process
LOS ANGELES — In this critical election year, SAG-AFTRA has launched VOTE2020, an initiative that encourages the union’s more than 160,000 members to participate in the democratic process. Central to this effort is the union's bilingual digital hub, sagaftra.org/vote2020, that offers information on how to register, shareable social media graphics, a polling place locator, information on requesting an absentee ballot, a timer counting down to Election Day and more.
“As union members, we understand the importance of using our collective voice to better people’s lives — and that’s what we’re doing with VOTE2020. We know apathy kills democracy, so it is imperative that we take this opportunity to remind our members — and all Americans — that our country needs our vote. Whether we vote early, vote by mail, or head to the polls on Nov. 3; our government only works when we participate,” said SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris. “Elections matter. If we don’t choose who represents us, someone else will choose for us.”
“Democracy is not a spectator sport. If you care about your country, your future and your children’s future, now is the time to make your voice heard,” said SAG-AFTRA National Executive Director David White.
The union released a new episode of the SAG-AFTRA podcast titled Election 2020: A Conversation on Voting Rights. Hosted by Carteris and White, the episode features Carolyn DeWitt, president and executive director of Rock the Vote, and Myrna Pérez, director of the Voting Rights and Elections Program at the Brennan Center for Justice.
“This is not a time to despair; it’s a time to get to work. Everything you think is wrong with this country is not going to get better if you sit it out," said DeWitt.
The union's VOTE2020 efforts kicked off with the live webinar Women's Equality Day: A Celebration of Women's Voices & Women's Votes on Aug. 25 with members Tichina Arnold, Bella Thorne, Brenda Song, AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler and Rock the Vote’s Jasmine Jones, moderated by reporter LaMonica Peters. On National Voter Registration Day, Sept. 22, Carteris released a video message reminding members that "the first necessary step to be an active member of a democracy is to use your voice."
Throughout the coming month, the union will be counting down to Nov. 3 with new content and programming, including a pre-Election Day livestream geared to engaging new and younger voters.
Though SAG-AFTRA is non-partisan, the VOTE2020 campaign was created to help increase engagement in the electoral process and voter turnout among members for what could become the most consequential election of modern times. The VOTE2020 initiative will continue through Election Day with additional videos, reminders and a few surprises. Get all the information at sagaftra.org/vote2020. Members are encouraged to share images of themselves casting their ballot with the hashtag #sagaftravotes and to download and share graphics from our website.