MD NAACP Chapter seeks to boost registration ahead of election day
SALISBURY, Md- The Maryland Chapter of the NAACP is working to register young voters, as early voting is already underway in the state.
Members tell 47ABC that turnout is often lower for midterm elections compared to a presidential, and they are hoping to let young people know why they should vote.
At a pop-up registration event outside of Seagull Stadium Saturday, members of the non-partisan organization helped students register to vote, both in Maryland and for other states if the students did not claim campus as a residence prior to the October 18th deadline.
“We hear from communities across the state that ‘I don’t vote because my vote doesn’t matter but it does,” said President of the Maryland State Conference Youth and College Division for NAACP Dorien Rogers.
He says, his group works to let voters know the positions of candidates on the ballot, making sure voters learn about down-ballot races and stressing how those candidates can affect change in their lives.
“People want to know ‘how does the vote affect me’ and we answer that in a nonpartisan way we are nonpartisan but what is going on is we are combating a culture where people are so focused on the president, but we need to focus on the city, state, county and on board of education,” he said.
SU NAACP Chapter advisor Joseph Venosa says elections like for the board of education – are especially important for Salisbury university students.
“School boards are directly connected to people’s lives and the education they get, the Salisbury University students here who are going off and working in our schools, they will be dealing with students building lives and careers here and are invested in the issue, getting people to see that is the challenge,” he said.
Venosa says 470 students were registered in just the last week, along with over 2,000 phone calls put out across Wicomico and Worcester counties.
Rogers tells us each group of voters responds to different methods of getting them invested in politics.
“The framework for Alleghany county is not the same for Wicomico or Dorchester or broadly the shore, we need to make sure we are doing what’s most effective if that’s door knocking or phone calls or free food, so we are consistent and conscious,” he said.