Did you know there are approximately 58,000 registered voters in Lowell? In the 2012 presidential election, approximately 33,000 of them voted. In the past two city elections, far fewer participated – 11,500 in 2013 and just 10,000 in 2011.
We believe that if more people were to vote in local elections, the city of Lowell and all here would benefit. To help make that happen, join with other Lowellians in a nonpartisan, grass roots effort to increase participation in the next city election, especially in neighborhoods with historically low turnout and among groups that have faced barriers to voting.
We had a great first meeting of 2017 last week! Thanks to all who came, but don’t worry if you missed it, there’s lots of ways to do your bit going forward. Read over the list of committees below and their planned action items see if there’s one you might want to join! Email email@example.com to get connected.
Neighborhood and Multicultural, Meeting in February
- Recruit and advocate for translators at polling locations
- Engage with faith-based communities with information and encouragement
- Organize multi-ethnic meet ups for civic engagement in each neighborhood
Events, Next Meeting Tuesday, Jan 31
- Go to existing events to distribute voting information and register voters
- Identify events that will make biggest impact and recruit volunteers
- Plan a special summer/fall rally event
Canvassing and Voter Contact, House Party Meeting TBD
- Contact voters door-to-door to collect input into the questions for a candidate survey
- Later distribute voter guides door-to-door
- Consider a “non-binding” ballot initiative to drive civic engagement by underserved communities
Youth Outreach, TBD
- Organize and advocate for Civics Day at Lowell High School with meetings with councils, city officials, and shadowing in various departments
- Create a Youth Commission to advise City on Policies and provide input
- Lowell Votes Youth Survey to solicit input on how youth want to be involved
Media and Education, TBD
- Create a separate Twitter to re-tweet all local political topics
- Create section of website for candidates materials like press releases
- Create a multilingual candidate guide with informative website
We have all sorts of resources available to help make it easier to vote!
Our 2016 voter guide is available (774 kb, PDF) here. It has a FAQ and questions and answers for all competitive races!
Finally, we co-sponsored a forum featuring Niki Tsongas (D-incumbent) and Ann Wofford (R), candidates for US Representative, 3rd MA district. The candidates answered questions from both adults and Lowell High students. Co-sponsors were League of Women Voters Concord Carlisle, Lowell High School, WCAP, and Lowell Educational Television, and Nancy Carapezza of LWV Wayland moderated. There were 400 people in attendance, as well as top Lowell school administrators. Watch it here:
The “Rally for Civic Engagement” is Lowell Votes’ premiere annual event in which we invite all candidates running for office that will appear on a ballot in Lowell to give a short speech and then talk one-on-one with rally attendees. The 2016 Rally will be held on Friday, September 2, 6:30 pm on JFK Plaza in front of Lowell City Hall.
The event will feature nonprofit and advocacy group tables, music, and decorations in a festival-like setting. The new food truck “Let’s Roll” will be there. As a fun incentive, candidates will be given sashes and can earn badges by talking to the tabling groups and learning about the issues they care about.
Please join the event on Facebook and share the word!
We’ve got three exciting things to share this week!
The 2016 Primary Guide, a collaboration between Lowell Votes, Cambodian Mutual Assistance Association, and Coalition for a Better Acre, is here! Check it out if you live in the 18th Middlesex District: In Spanish, Khmer, and English!
Our first public meeting is Monday, August 22, 2016, at 6:30 pm, at the Pollard Memorial Library. Be there for food and workshopping our 2016 program. We can’t do it without you!
The 2016 Rally for Civic Engagement is coming September 2, 2016! We still have tables left for groups or nonprofits that want to collect signatures, share information, get volunteers, and most importantly meet the 2016 candidates for local and state offices!
Click on the images below for the high-resolution PDF version!