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Young People Step Up for More Than A Vote and NAACP Legal Defense Fund's 'We Got Next' Campaign


Corporate partners and SS+K take a role in recruiting poll workers for the 2020 American election

Young People Step Up for More Than A Vote and NAACP Legal Defense Fund's 'We Got Next' Campaign

Today, More Than A Vote and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) formally launched the ‘We Got Next’ campaign aimed at recruiting young people to serve as poll workers during the 2020 general election.

The organisations launched the campaign with an ad that will premier tonight during Game two of the NBA Eastern Conference Finals along with More Than A Vote and LDF webpages directing users to sign up to serve as poll workers. Both the websites and digital advertising will directly link users to sign up via Power the Polls.

We Got Next combines the cultural influence of the MTAV athletes and artists with LDF’s resources and long-standing voting rights expertise and community engagement in a nonpartisan effort to recruit young activists to work at polling locations in vulnerable Black communities across the nation with a focus on Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Mississippi, Ohio, Texas, and Wisconsin. 

The growing poll worker shortage is particularly dire in communities of colour, where voters already face inadequate voting infrastructure. The traditional pool of poll workers relies heavily on older Americans — the very population most at-risk to coronavirus. Nearly 60 percent of poll workers are senior citizens or retirees. The Covid-related shortage already caused problems during the second half of the primary season and threatens to jeopardise equitable voting opportunities in the general election.

“Covid has made the inadequate voting infrastructure that many Black people already deal with in a normal year an even greater challenge to overcome in 2020,” said Portland Trail Blazers Guard CJ McCollum and WNBA All-Star Chiney Ogwumike in a joint statement for More Than A Vote. "That’s why More Than A Vote focused on converting dormant sports arenas and stadiums into voting locations and it’s why we’re now asking young people to step up and serve as poll workers in our communities. Covid understandably scared off a lot of older poll workers, but if we do our job we can fill the void with the young people who have been demanding change all summer and make sure no vote is suppressed due to long lines or confusion at the polls on Election Day.”

“We want every Black voter to be able to participate in this election. That means we need to ensure that our polling places are open and staffed beginning with early voting and through Election Day,” said Sherrilyn Ifill, president and director-counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. “It is no secret that the Covid-19 pandemic has disproportionately hit Black communities. The elderly are particularly vulnerable to this deadly virus. For decades, we have relied on our seniors to staff polling places on Election Day. This year, we are making the call to young people to serve so that we can protect our vote and protect our seniors during this pandemic. This is an important, powerful, and urgent call to action to serve our communities in one of the most consequential elections in our lifetime.”

"There's no better way to protect the vote in an election that's been put at risk by anti-democratic voter suppression efforts. Poll workers will join emergency medical workers as heroes of this unique year." Rob Shepardson, co-founder, SS+K

We Got Next is funded through the generous contributions of corporate partners including Bumble, Cash App, Diageo North America, and Patagonia.

In addition to providing financial support for the campaign, We Got Next’s corporate partners are stepping up in substantive ways to drive people to serve as poll workers. The NBA will air the spot nationally during the NBA Playoffs and partner with More Than A Vote and NAACP LDF to encourage fans to work the polls on social media while Patagonia will provide employees with four paid days off to serve as poll workers during the early voting period and will close all US operations and stores on Election Day.

Narrated by Portland Trail Blazers guard CJ McCollum, the spot intersplices footage of athletes using their platforms to demand change with that of activists past and present marching for and demanding justice. As McCollum implores viewers to take advantage of the momentum created by the activists who have demanded change during the summer of 2020, visuals of young people setting up and staffing voting precincts takes over. The spot ends with the explicit call to 'become a poll worker' and directs viewers to sign up at more.than/next.

The ad is available on all MTAV and LDF digital platforms. 

In addition to the 30-second spot running during the conference finals, the campaign will feature both a 45-second version narrated by WNBA All-Star Chiney Ogwumike and 15-second version running on digital platforms. 

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Genres: People

Categories: Corporate, Social and PSAs, Political

SS+K, Thu, 17 Sep 2020 16:40:51 GMT