CAIR-Chicago’s office will be closed today as it mobilizes the Muslim community to let their voice be heard by a strong voter representation this Election Day.
To help get out the Muslim vote nationwide, CAIR-Chicago has supported candidate forums, distributed voter guides, organized voter registration drives, hosted political participation workshops in mosques, sponsored meetings with elected representatives, participated in get-out-the-vote (GOTV) drives, and urged American Muslims to vote as a positive response to the anti-Muslim rhetoric in the election campaign.
With the slogan “Our vote is power” CAIR-Chicago and its partners hope this campaign will “make the community visible to elected officials, empower American Muslims, catalyze change in the immigration system, and support humane policies to restore civil rights” says Nadia Abusamayah, a community organizer and CAIR-Chicago’s New American Democracy Project fellow.
1. GO TO THE POLLS and VOTE!
2. TAKE FRIENDS and FAMILY members with you to vote.
3. REPORT any incidents of voter intimidation, harassment or denial of the right to vote to CAIR. Contact CAIR by calling 202-488-8787, or by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org
4. DISTRIBUTE this alert on your personal e-mail list.
WHAT TO DO ON ELECTION DAY:
1. KNOW WHERE TO GO. In many states, you will NOT be allowed to vote if you show up at the wrong polling place. Call your board of elections and they can help you locate your polling place. If you can’t reach your board, call 1-866-OURVOTE.
2. BRING PROPER IDENTIFICATION. Proper forms of ID can include a driver’s license, a utility bill or another document that includes your name and address. Make sure the ID matches your address.
3. READ SIGNS AT POLLING PLACES for instructions on how to vote and how to file a complaint if you believe your rights have been violated.
4. REVIEW THE SAMPLE BALLOT BEFORE VOTING. Ballots are often confusing, and their designs can change considerably from election to election. If you have questions about how to vote on your ballot, ask a poll worker or poll monitor for help.
5. CHECK YOUR BALLOT BEFORE CASTING YOUR VOTE. If you are having a problem understanding instructions, or if you just want to make sure you are voting in the correct manner, ask to speak to a poll worker
6. KNOW YOUR RIGHTS CONCERNING “PROVISIONAL BALLOTS.” No voter can be turned away in any state without being allowed to vote. If there is a question about your eligibility, you must be allowed to vote on a provisional ballot, the validity of which will be determined later. But if you are entitled to vote on a regular ballot, you should insist on doing so, since a provisional ballot may be disqualified later on a technicality.
7. KNOW WHERE TO TURN FOR HELP. It is a good idea to bring a cell phone and phone numbers of nonpartisan hotlines such as 1-866-OURVOTE and 1-866-MYVOTE1.
8. BE PREPARED FOR LONG LINES. Try to get to your polling place very early in the morning, or between the before-work and after-work rushes. As long as you are in line before the polls close, you are legally entitled to vote. Do not let poll workers close the polls until you have voted.