104 weeks down, 2 days to midterm elections.
The AoC Checklist features clear, well-researched actions for Americans who value democracy, equality, voting, and decency. We also practice gratitude, self-care, and celebration to stay engaged.
I value voting and fair elections.
This is your challenge on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday this week: Do all of the actions below and share them everywhere you can. Achieving a balanced Congress brings our country’s leaders one step closer to accountability. This only happens if we vote.
▢ Offer a ride to the polls. Post on social media, email, or send a text: “Hey, I’m going to the polls on Tuesday to vote. Let me know if you want a ride.”
▢ Mini-canvass. As you go about your day, ask the people you meet if they’re going to vote. Peer pressure motivates. Celebrate if they already have.
▢ Get a sample ballot to check out candidates’ records. Be sure to look for District Attorney candidates who focus on diversion and rehabilitation programs vs. prison. (This tool asks for your email, but it’s not required.)
▢ Check your state’s ID requirements.
▢ Check today that your name hasn’t been purged from voter rolls and that your information is accurate.
▢ Check that your polling place is open and in the same place.
▢ Know what to say if turned away. If you’re registered but turned away at the polls, you have a legal right to a provisional ballot. Ask for and complete it.
If you are denied a provisional ballot—or you have other voting problems—contact:
- 866-OUR-VOTE — English hotline
- 888-VE-Y-VOTA — Spanish hotline
- 888-API-VOTE — Asian & Pacific languages hotline
- 844-YALLA-US — Arabic language hotline
- Text OUR VOTE to 97779 — SMS hotline
▢ Double check your ballot. If you vote straight ticket on a machine, double check that all the candidates in the lineup are correct before completing the process. If not, edit if necessary or ask for help.
▢ Bonus: Join When We All Vote’s texting team. If you want to remind people to get to the polls on Tuesday, this is an easy way to do it. Sign up here.
As you complete the actions above, please share them to empower others.
I value perseverance.
▢ Take a day of rest this week.
For each person, self-care looks different, but doing something self-nourishing this week is a priority. Even if the elections yield the results you want, and even though there’s a lot of work still to be done, give yourself some down time. Some examples include doing a media fast, taking time in nature, gathering with friends, going to bed early, or playing with kids and/or pets. We need you here for the next election. And the one after that. But first, rest.
Deep breath innnnnnn… Deep breath ouuuuuuuut… Here comes the good stuff.
Acts of Gratitude
Get out your stamps, postcards, and sparkle markers for some gratitude mail.
Thank the U.S. Department of Justice for deepening its commitment to addressing and preventing hate crimes in the U.S. [Share why this matters to you.] The DOJ’s new website, trainings, and data-gathering efforts can make a positive difference in our communities. Thank you. [h/t]
To: Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and/or Acting Assistant Attorney General John Gore
Address: U.S. Department of Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20530-0001
Thank Sean “Diddy” Combs for committing $1 million to the Capital Preparatory Schools network to help kids in underserved communities gain access to high-quality education. [Share why education matters to you.]
Address: ℅ Violator Management & Records, 36 West 25th Street, New York, NY 10010-2706
Thank three transgender filmmakers for using the powerful medium of film to illuminate the experiences of trans people and their civil rights. [Share why this matters to you.]
If your last name is A-H: Daresha Kyi, c/o ACLU, 125 Broad Street, 18th Floor, New York NY 10004
Last name I-P: Cary Cronenwett, c/o ACLU, 125 Broad Street, 18th Floor, New York NY 10004
Last name Q-Z: Little By Little Films, c/o ACLU, 125 Broad Street, 18th Floor, New York NY 10004
Congratulate Josh Bendor, Vianey Hurtado, and Ron Kilgard for receiving recognition as Florence Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project pro bono attorneys of the year. [Share why representing detained immigrants matters to you.]
If your last name is A-H: JB, 2929 North Central Avenue, Twenty-First Floor, Phoenix, AZ 85012-2793
Last name I-P: VH, 3830 North 19th Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85015
Last name Q-Z: RK, 3101 North Central Avenue, Suite 1400, Phoenix, AZ 85012-2600
Thank America Ferrera, Alicia Keys, and Liza Koshy for mobilizing and motivating Latinx voters. [Share why this matters to you.]
Tweet: @AmericaFerrera @aliciakeys @LizaKoshy
Decent people everywhere are speaking up and working together. Just look. #GoodNews
- More women are running for office the 2018 election than the previous two.
- By Halloween, 10 states had exceeded the number of mail-in votes by the same date in 2014.
- The Department of Justice launched a new hate crimes website, designed to be a central resource for victims, law enforcement officials, and advocacy groups.
- An American detained and denied his rights by the U.S. government in Iraq has been released.
- Naturalized U.S. citizen Guadalupe Plascencia is awarded $55,000 for false arrest and imprisonment by ICE.
- Ruling: More than 300,000 immigrants will be able to stay for at least another year after the Administration was found to have violated federal law and constitutional protections by attempting to terminate Temporary Protected Status (TPS).
State and local
- GA ruling: Absentee ballots will be counted.
- GA ruling: The state can no longer charge people to see the laws that govern them.
- PA ruling: The fairer, redrawn electoral map will be left in place for 2018 and 2020 elections.
- OH ruling: Purged voters may cast provisional ballots in the November 6 election.
- OH: Working to make women’s prisons more humane.
- Camden County, NJ has decreased incarceration by 20% and is researching jail alternatives.
- L.A Metro to offer free Election Day rides on buses and trains to boost turnout rates.
- A record 44% of companies will give workers paid time off to vote on November 6.
- An exhibition at Harvard presents the influence of immigrants on theater throughout history.
- ESSENCE launches Girls United, a mentoring initiative focused on helping girls 12-17 increase their academic potential, self-love, and leadership skills.
- Google CEO Sundar Pichai supports an employee walkout to protest sexual misconduct.
- FedEx is terminating a 26% shipping discount for NRA-related businesses.
Groups and organizations
- A youth-led group coordinates a pro-voting national walk out.
- Voto Latino surpassed its goal to register 200,000 voters in 2018.
- Mi Familia Vota sent out Spanish-language ads about why people should vote.
- Since 1997, 1.4 million people have regained voting rights thanks to 23 states changing their felony disenfranchisement laws.
- The Immigrant Clemency Project helps reduce deportations by helping people apply for gubernatorial pardons.
- American Immigration Lawyers Association volunteer attorneys win Indonesian families a second chance at asylum.
- TransLatina unfurls banner during World Series in support of transgender people’s lives.
- Native American tribes working overtime to empower their voters.
News with heart
- The little girl who admired Michelle Obama’s portrait gets an amazing Halloween costume.
- Muslim community raises money to help their Jewish neighbors through tragedy.
- Rahson Johnson is voting for the first time in his life.
- An impoverished, earthquake-devastated town in Mexico extends a welcome to people en route to the U.S., providing them with food, water, diapers, and a place to shelter.
- Despite being shot and paralyzed by police in 2012, Leon Ford will run for Pittsburgh City Council.
- Prisoners and prison staff swap roles in re-entry simulator experience, increasing empathy.
- Retired NBA player Jalen Rose’s tuition-free public charter high school in Northwest Detroit has a 93% graduation rate and 100% college and post-secondary acceptance rate.
Spread the word
Know someone who could use some good news and clear actions? Please share!
Tweet: Want to help increase turnout for Tuesday’s election (and feel more hopeful)? Check out this week’s @AoCChecklist today: https://americansofconscience.com/11-04-2018/
Post on Facebook: Want to help increase turnout for Tuesday’s election (and feel more hopeful too)? Check out this week’s Americans of Conscience Checklist today: https://americansofconscience.com/11-04-2018/
Going to an election party this week? Share The Americans of Conscience Checklist flier to provide a path for post-election focus.
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- Sign up: Get the weekly Americans of Conscience Checklist here.
- Gratitude: Big thanks to JEvale and the Production Team, our Social Media volunteers, Research Sous Chefs, and Team Captains for their hearts and contribution. Thanks also to the amazing angel patrons whose support makes this work possible.
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Thank you for bringing gratitude and balance to all the political actions that help make a difference.
Thank you for the hope and care I have found on your site. I am truly inspired!
Thank you for the positive work.
I am deeply thankful for the wonderful work that you and your team do each week. I especially appreciate the good news and the ways to express gratitude to persons, organizations, government agencies, representatives etc. It always brightens my day.
This is extremely helpful, both for the advice to rest and get away from media, and for the “acts of gratitude” and good news of progress in the public/political sphere.