Pennsylvania Voting Rights Groups Are Working To Expand Ballot Access Through Education And Advocacy
This article originally appeared in the Bucks County Beacon on September 15, 2023 and was written by Catherine Caruso.
According to Christina Hartman, Common Cause PA’s advisory board chair, the organization also shares “accurate and reliable information” about voting on social media, provides voters with tutorials on how to correctly fill out ballots, engages in voter outreach to register people to vote, and works with other organizations to educate “voters with disabilities and caregivers about their voting rights to make sure that everyone has access to the ballot.”
Hartman says that while educating voters can also help combat election misinformation and “distrust” in the system, it’s not enough for advocacy groups to demystify the voting process – the government must also step in. “If the public doesn’t have confidence in what the government is doing, then the government itself needs to be on that first line,” she added.
In addition to keeping voters informed, Common Cause PA is also working to make voting easier and more accessible to all voters and help elections run more smoothly. “It’s our job to monitor what’s going on vis-à-vis democracy,” Hartman told the Bucks County Beacon, which includes working with “folks in Harrisburg to help advocate for a more accessible democracy” for every Pennsylvanian and dispatching “lawyers throughout the state to make sure that voting laws are being respected.”
Hartman says that implementing automatic voter registration, pre-canvassing mail-in ballots, adjusting voter ID laws, and creating standards for post-election audits can all expand access to the ballot and help “voters feel reassured that their vote counted.”
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