Like many, the Alliance for Youth Organizing has had to shift and re-align our work in the wake of the COVID-19 health emergency to ensure the safety of our staff and communities. As of March 13th, the Alliance has moved to fully remote work and cancelled all travel. But just like the young people that drive our work, we remain nimble, flexible, and innovative to meet the challenges of this uncertain time. Here’s how the Alliance and our network has adapted our work:
Social distancing does not mean we stop organizing our people. It just means we do it differently. Alliance network organizations have quickly adapted their work from being field-first to digital-first. This looks like reaching young people via phone, text, and social media platforms to check in, share resources for getting through the pandemic, collect impact stories, and of course, share local voter education and election information. We have seen exciting adaptations in leadership development, issue advocacy, and young voter turnout as network organizations rise to the challenge of these times. The Alliance is supporting our crews as they work through these organizational and programmatic changes and uplifting this work to key stakeholders whenever we can.
Protecting our Democracy
In response to the impacts of the COVID-19 on our democracy, the Alliance network has joined allies across the country in demanding elected leaders in federal, state, and local governments take immediate action to protect our democracy and expand vote-by-mail and other measures to keep our elections safe and accessible. We have been on the forefront of addressing how to build a voting system that works for all Americans through our Democracy Done Right campaign for years, and believe our response to this public health crisis must also include removing roadblocks to young voter access and protecting our democracy. In particular, we are fighting to expand vote by mail, extend voter registration deadlines, and increase early vote periods as we fight to keep polling places open to avoid long lines.
We’re so grateful to be in this fight alongside the innovative and resilient young leaders that make up our network. While this moment has uncovered the many inadequacies of our country in horrifying ways, it has also presented us with an opportunity to push for the bold solutions we need to make progress as a country — and young people are leading the way. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you want to learn more about our work during this time.
For more details on how the Alliance and our network has adapted during these times, check out these related blog posts:
Alliance Pick-me Up: Innovative Organizing, New Staff