The Providers' Council appreciates your support of the electoral process!
Did you know? Massachusetts now allows online voter registration. Simply visit the Secretary of the Commonwealth's online voter registration page, and follow the simple instructions. Registering to vote takes less than five minutes -- and now you don't even need a postage stamp!
Not sure if you're registered to vote or if you're registered at the wrong address and need to re-register? Use this website to check.
Please also note the important dates for the 2016 election cycle:
- Friday, August 19 - Voter registration deadline for the September 8 State Primary election
- Thursday, September 8 - State Primary in Massachusetts
- Wednesday, October 19 - Voter registration deadline for the November 8 General Election
- Tuesday, November 8 - General Election in Massachusetts (includes both MA races and Presidential election)
Some other resources are listed below. If you have any questions, please contact Bill Yelenak.
Interested in encouraging voting at your agency? Take these steps!
- Create a plan for voter participation activities (registration, education, getting out to vote). Contact Bill Yelenak to get ideas of what you can do at your agency.
- Confirm support from the Board of Directors and Executive Director/CEO. A plan with the best chance of success begins by getting buy-in from your agency's leaders.
- Appoint an internal person to coordinate voter activities within your organization!
Some tips for educating voters include...
- Sponsor a nonpartisan election event (candidate forum, debate, issue education). Want advice on how to do this? Contact Bill Yelenak.
- Contact the media. A trip to the elections office is a potential news story. Take a camera and give a good photo to your local paper, which your representatives and senators read! The Council can help you write a release.
- Contact the Election Department to bring in a sample voting machine for your lobby or a special event. This is a way to get new voters familiar and comfortable with the act of voting.
- Put election information in employee communications, like electronic newsletters or in paycheck envelopes. This is some of the most read information your agency sends out!
- And don't forget -- nonprofits can advocate for or against ballot questions!
Ask us for materials
The Council has all kind of materials to provide to members. Please ask us for:
- Newsletter articles you can modify for your own use
- A template for small cards you can produce with voter registration information. Good for off-site consumers/clients and staff or payroll stuffers
- Leaflets and other pamphlets on how to get forms, how to fill them out and how to return them.
Other important items to keep in mind
- Keep it legal. Avoid perceptions of "politicizing" this campaign. Make it a voluntary, non-partisan effort and ensure people don't feel pressured or coerced to support one candidate or another.
- The Secretary of State has registration forms in Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Russian, Khmer, Haitian Creole, as well as in English. Ask them for voter forms here.
- Periodically ask whether the board and staff have updated their voter registration. If they move, they must re-register. If you are unsure of your status, the Council can look up your voter information and verify your address.
- Send information on your agency to candidates running for office. Invite all candidates to your programs for a tour.
- Check out our national partner, Nonprofit Vote, for more information.
CareVote is an initiative of the Providers' Council. Thanks to the Nonprofit VOTE for this checklist, which we have adapted. Visit them at their website.