This is Alyssa Davis. I am a student. I am an organizer. And I am concerned. After the initial Board of Elections meeting to discuss early voting plans for Orange County, I am concerned about the Board’s process for making decisions that impact all of the citizens of Orange County. Namely Sunday voting.
Currently this is not an option offered during early voting, but it needs to be. Our county is made up of a diverse population, some of whose Sabbath falls on a different day than Sunday. A large percentage of our population come from working class families, for which Sunday is their only day off as a family. And let’s face it: students usually put things off. The ability to vote on Sunday would greatly increase student voter turnout, especially as sporting events fall on Saturdays. Lastly, many churches relish the chance to go out and vote together as a congregation. Souls to the Polls is an important initiative for many local churches, as it allows their community to engage with the larger political process.
Sunday voting is not a partisan issue. It is an issue of democracy. Limiting the ability for certain people to exercise their right to vote is a backward tactic. We must recognize that we do not all have the same lifestyle that affords us equal opportunities. However, the ability to vote should be an equal opportunity for everyone. Otherwise we are not a democracy.
To voice your concerns on this issue, I urge all Orange County residents to attend the BOE’s public forum on Tuesday, July 22nd at 11 am at their office in Hillsborough.