Our civic engagement work goes beyond the ballot box
Happy Election Day! Today, millions of Americans all across the country will express their vision for the future of our communities through their vote. While we don't yet know the results, we do know this -- the importance of the Latino vote will only continue to grow with every election cycle. Latinos are one of the fastest-growing communities in the U.S. and have, for the first time in 2020, surpassed African-Americans as the single, largest minority group with more eligible voters in the U.S.
This is why Voces Unidas launched an unprecedented voter engagement program in late September to target low propensity Latino voters in Garfield, Eagle, and Pitkin counties to boost Latino voter participation in our own local elections. These efforts were comprehensive and unprecedented -- we made phone calls, knocked on doors, sent text message reminders, shared a comprehensive voter guide, released paid ads, and sent direct mail. We even sued the U.S. Postal Service and won in federal court to ensure that our ballots would arrive on time, without political interference.
As we look to what's next, we are keeping this mantra in mind -- voting is only one part of civic engagement. While voter participation is undeniably important, meaningful civic engagement beyond election season is critical to a strong community and a robust democracy. Because Latinos are a significant portion of our valley's population, our local institutions and social fabric depend on better inclusion of Latinos.
For us, "beyond the ballot box" means creating year-round opportunities for our leaders to engage directly with their elected officials, supporting leader-led campaigns to advocate for community-created solutions, and offering trainings and growth opportunities for those leaders who want to run for public office or serve on a local non-profit board or advisory body.
Through civic engagement, leadership and advocacy, Voces Unidas will continue to work hard every year to unlock the civic power of Latinos to make our region even more equitable for all.