Tuesday, August 30, 2016

AAPI volunteers sought for November election

AALDEF
AALDEF volunteers have been monitoring key election polls in recent elections.
ONE OF THE signature projects of the Asian American Legal Defense & Education Fund is the Election Day monitoring and Asian American exit poll. 

"We're still looking for nonpartisan volunteers in 14 states to monitor polling places in the 2016 elections to be sure that all eligible Asian Americans can exercise their right to vote on Nov. 8," said AALDEF executive director Margaret Fung.  "Join us for a training session, and then help us to protect voting rights on Election Day!"

Although relatively small in number, in some key states, Asian/American voters could possibly be the difference-maker this November. The states AALDEF is targetting are: California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and Washington, DC.

There is a fear that some states will use some tactics that will suppress voter turnout of people of color, ie. purposely having fewer polling places resulting in hours-long lines, asking for additional identification, proof of address or citizenship or just having some unsavory characters hanging around polling places trying to intimidate would-be voters.

Following is from the AALDEF website:



In past elections, Asian Americans have faced a series of barriers in exercising their right to vote, including segregated "Asian" voting lines. When the news media reported on election results, Asian Americans were often overlooked. In response, the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF) has conducted a non-partisan exit poll of Asian American voters to document Asian American voting patterns and document instances of anti-Asian voter disenfranchisement. 

AALDEF has monitored the elections for compliance with the federal Voting Rights Act, which mandates bilingual ballots and forbids anti-Asian voter discrimination. In the 2012 elections, 850 volunteers polled 9,096 Asian American voters in 14 states and Washington, DC.

We are recruiting volunteers in the following states to work in 3-hour shifts on Election Day:
California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, New York, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and Washington, DC.

There will be a one-hour training session for all volunteers in October (90 minutes for CLE credits). All AALDEF volunteers must be non-partisan during the time they are at polling places on Election Day. Please complete the form at www.aaldef.net and join us in protecting voting rights. Thank you!

For more information, contact:

  • Jerry Vattamala, Democracy Program Director
  • Iris Zalun, Voting Rights Organizer
  • 800-966-5946 
  • votingrights@aaldef.org
###