Your right to vote

It is hard to imagine a time where not all citizens of the United States were able to register to vote. Women did not win the nationwide right to vote in 1920. Before then, they were only allowed to vote in a few states. It was as recent as the 1960s, when states within the US had policies such as poll taxes, and requiring literacy and English language tests in order to suppress voting among people of color, immigrants, and those who were from low-income communities. 

 

It was not until 1965, that the Voting Rights Act was passed. This act made it illegal for states to require any prerequisites such as literacy tests in order for citizens to vote. In 1975, this act was also expanded to protect immigrants and other minorities with language barriers from discrimination. 

 

During the 1960s, student activists fought for the right to vote. This was due to the fact that during this time, the age to be able to vote was 21. The Vietnam War allowed for college students to be drafted at the age of 18 and this spurned student activists to fight for the right to vote. They felt that if they could be drafted into the war at age 18, then they should be able to vote as well. As a result, the 26th amendment was passed, prohibiting state and federal governments for using age as a reason to prohibit citizens over the age of eighteen from voting.

 

It was not too long ago that voting was made possible for all US citizens 18 and over: regardless of race, gender, income level or language spoken. Not only is voting more accessible to all citizens aged 18 and over, but now it is easier than ever to register to vote. Voter registration forms are easily accessible in many different languages. Some states, such as New York, even let you register online. Also, if you are at least 16 years-old, you can even pre-register! Once you turn 18, your registration is activated automatically and you can vote at the next election. 

 

Dominicanos USA wants to make the process of registering to vote as convenient as possible. We have an online portal that allows you to register online. It only takes a few minutes! Visit our portal on our website to get started.

Why Your Voice and Vote Matter

Why Your Voice and Vote Matter

As a U.S. citizen, you are granted many, hard-fought privileges, which manifest themselves in the form of rights and duties. As a contributing citizen, your right to vote is the bedrock of U.S. democracy. By exercising your constitutional right to vote, you fulfill your duty – making your voice a contributing factor in the advancement of society. To help explain the importance of your vote, we’ve listed key reasons as to what voting means for you and your community:

 

1) It is Your Constitutional Right.

More than simply electing officials, voting offers you the opportunity to choose the policies and people that affect your local community, state, and the country as a whole. 

 

2) It Affects Your Professional Life.

The officials you vote for, including members of Congress, governor, and president, all make decisions pertinent to health insurance, workers’ rights, minimum wage, and even fair hiring practices.

 

3) It Affects Your Access to Health Care.

With your vote, elected government officials are granted the right to take action on laws that affect your access to health care. By voting, you get a say in who is chosen to represent you and work with your best interest in mind.

 

4) Social Security.

President and congress officials contribute to changes in payroll tax and Medicare services you receive. Their decisions also affect changes in the cost of living and benefits from your Social Security pension.

 

5) Allocation of Federal Funds and Neighborhood Safety.

Your vote indicates what issues are most important to you and your community, allowing government officials to address those concerns and allocate federal funds appropriately. Such funds are used to benefit education, youth development, health care, job creation, the environment, and more. Elected officials also make decisions that further impact your local community, law enforcement, city planning, and the building of schools, parks, and recreational centers.

 

6) Education.

Local, state, and federal officials that you elect contribute to policies and funding that affect the quality of child education and the cost of higher education. By voting for officials that work in your best interest, you allow yourself and your children a chance at a brighter future through better education and employment.

 

Remember, even if you are not 18 years old, or are not a U.S. citizen you can still participate civically and be a contributing member to your community by staying informed, being a part of the election conversation, and volunteering.

 

Voting is one of the most important rights granted to you as a U.S. citizen – your voice is an essential contribution to U.S. democracy. If you are or know someone who is a U.S. citizen who is not registered to vote, visit our website to learn more and easily register to vote in your local, state, and national elections.

 

Sources:

https://aactnow.org/why-vote/

https://www.nationalgeographic.org/article/why-voting-important/

 Most Common Myths and Misconceptions about Registering to Vote, Debunked 

Voting is one of the best aspects of being part of a democratic society. According to the Census, “the 2020 presidential election had the highest voter turnout of the 21st century, with 66.8% of citizens 18 years and older voting in the election.” Although these numbers reside at an all time high, it is important to stay informed and knowledgeable about common myths and misconceptions about registering to vote. In order to keep these numbers high, let’s debunk these common misconceptions! 

Myth #1: “Registering to vote takes too long”

What do registering to vote and brushing your teeth have in common? They both take 2 minutes to complete! Making your voice heard as you register to vote is a speedy process that only takes 2 minutes to complete. DUSA aims at making the process one that is enjoyable and smooth. 

Myth #2: “I must go in person to register to vote”

Registering to vote has never been easier! When you use our online voter registration tool, you can start and complete your application in just a few minutes all from the comfort of your home! Register to vote here: (https://bit.ly/DUSARegister

Myth #3: “I am 16, I can’t register to vote”

When you’re 16, you can pre-register to vore. You will be able to vote once you’re 18 on or after election day. Pre-registration is quick and easy!

To register to vote in New York City, you must:

  • Be a U.S. citizen
  • Be a New York resident for at least 30 days
  • And be at least 16 years old (you must be 18 on Election Day to vote. 

 Encourage the teens in your life to pre-register to vote using this link: https://dominicanosusa.org/pre-voter-registration/ 

 Myth #4: “I need a driver’s license to register to vote”

Don’t worry if you don’t have a driver’s license, you don’t need it to register to vote! You can still register using a non-driver ID (for example, a state ID) If you don’t have a ID card, states will permit you to register using the last four digits of your social security number (SSN) 

 *Note – some states such as Hawaii, South Carolina, Tennessee, New Mexico, Virginia and Kentucky require your full SSN. 

Myth #5: “Once I register to vote, I am set for all future elections” 

Even after you’ve registered to vote in the past, it is important to make sure your registration is up to date. If you have failed to vote in multiple elections, it is possible that your information may be erased from the system. You can check your voter registration here (https://dominicanosusa.org/registration-status-lookup/

Voting is one of the greatest benefits of being part of the United States, take full advantage of it by registering to vote! 

DUSA is the largest Dominican-American civic engagement organization in the US. Over 170,000 voters registered and mobilized since 2014.

Annual Report 2020/21

Contact Us

Dominicanos USA has charted a path for success and created key milestones for programmatic, financial and administrative gains. Resources are key. If you need help in your path to Citizenship, Voter Registration, and/or all other programs that we offer, please reach out to us.

Send us a Message

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Become a citizen today!

We offer free assistance for permanent residents interested in applying for US citizenship. We include guidance on filling correctly the paperwork and test prepping most saturdays.

 

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