Voting and the Census, By Carolyn Watts, Resident Co-Chair
"Ordinary people with extraordinary vision can redeem the soul of America by getting in what I call good trouble, necessary trouble.”
These are the words of John Lewis that was published in The
New York Times, Thursday, 30 July 2020.
Many of us may have gotten into trouble, but was our trouble, good trouble, necessary trouble? “Voting and participating in the democratic process are key”. It determines who often controls how we live our lives. As someone who has worked in the field of social services, I have seen those changes in our lives or the lives of our undeserved black, brown and even white family or friends.
Let us think of the changes and reduction of services to individuals receiving assistance to aid our families in daily living. TANF (Temporary Aid to Needy Families), Medicaid / Medicare, SNAP (Food Stamps), Housing (H.U.D. subsidies, Section 8), Adoption Assistance, Energy Assistance Programs (Heating Assistance) and more. All of these programs are based on eligibility. Individuals that we vote into office are the ones that work on how these programs are managed and how much money is designated to each of these programs. The census also determines how many people are living that might eventually need the above services.
We have reasons why we have not voted or could not vote, in the past. Let us honor ourselves and our ancestors who have fought the fight, died and have paved the way for our current paths in life.
Your Resident Co-Chair,