CEO-Led Coalition Launches A Day for Democracy Initiative to Increase Voter Participation
BOSTON, Aug. 5, 2020
BOSTON, Aug. 5, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- More than 100 CEOs from around the country today announced that they are participating in A Day for Democracy, which launched this week. A Day for Democracy is a growing coalition, founded by CEOs and leaders of top-ranked firms in industries including finance, real estate and construction, venture capital, higher education, entertainment, hospitality and healthcare that have pledged to increase voter registration and participation of their employees.
The non-partisan initiative asks employers across the U.S. to commit to take action to give employees time off to vote, and/or to help workers register and access their right to vote – in local, state and national elections – on their terms, whether at polling locations or from the safety of their own home. They can use a responsible online platform of their choice or work with turbovote.org, a leading online service through which employees can register, receive election reminders, and obtain, if they wish to use one, a mail-in ballot.
"There is no more important or patriotic act than voting," said Peter Palandjian, Chairman and CEO of Intercontinental Real Estate Corporation, who created the coalition. "I've always been troubled by routine low turnout in U.S. elections and wanted to find a way to have a positive effect on increasing voter participation. As a CEO, I recognize that I can help by removing barriers for my own employees and encouraging others to do the same. We can all do better, and this non-partisan effort is an important first step."
Joining Palandjian in A Day for Democracy are Robert Reynolds, President and CEO of Putnam Investments; Tim Buckley, Chairman and CEO of Vanguard Group; Ronald O'Hanley, Chairman and CEO of State Street Corp.; Larry Bacow, President of Harvard University; Miceal Chamberlain, Bank of America's Massachusetts Market President; J. Alexander (Sandy) Douglas, President and CEO of Staples Inc.; Tom Croswell, President and CEO of Tufts Health Plan; Andrew Dreyfus, CEO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts; James Judge, Chairman, President and CEO of Eversource; Dr. Peter Slavin, President, Massachusetts General Hospital; Linda Henry, Managing Director of The Boston Globe; Jonathan Bush, Executive Chairman at Firefly Health; and over 90 other companies including goop, Amblin Partners, Starwood Capital, Tely-vision, Bluebird Bio, Bain Capital, Bain & Co. and Wayfair Inc. The growing list of participants in the coalition, who together represent almost 300,000 employees to-date, can be found on the website, www.aDayforDemocracy.com.
The U.S. has one of the lowest voter participation rates of any democracy in the world. Less than 56 percent of the U.S. voting age population cast ballots in the last presidential election, and even fewer voted during the mid-term elections in 2014. Almost every other democracy holds elections on the weekend to make it easier to vote, and many that hold them during the week designate the day as a holiday.
This year, because of the pandemic, U.S. voters face an additional, unique set of challenges. While many states are increasing voting-by-mail opportunities to accommodate these circumstances, several specific steps are required to participate, including:
confirming voter registration and registering if necessary;
requesting an application to vote by mail;
receiving, completing and submitting that application;
receiving, completing and returning on time the ballot itself.
"As a nation, we have an obligation to ensure that we reduce barriers and allow every citizen the opportunity to exercise their right to vote," said Palandjian. "In rallying the support of employers across the country, we hope this movement will continue beyond this year and will reinvigorate the civic engagement of our country."
More information about A Day for Democracy and the CEO pledge can be found on the website www.aDayforDemocracy.com.
In addition to the companies mentioned earlier, the list of pledge participants includes:
Charlesbank Capital Partners
Cambridge Savings Bank
Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard
Thomas H Lee Partners
Bob's Discount Furniture
Cambridge Trust Company
Murphy & King, P.C.
Massachusetts Bankers Association
Citizens Energy Corp.
City of Springboro
Eureka Casino Resort
The Davis Cos.
Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce
International Tennis Hall of Fame
The Druker Company Ltd.
United Dynamics Inc.
V2M Capital LLC
Development Strategy Consultants
The Mikva Challenge
Purple Heart Foundation
Gilbert & Sackman
O'Neill and Associates
13th Floor Investments
TruAmerica Multifamily LLC
Bradley & Associates P.C.
Connors Family Office
UFCW & Golden State
Investment Performance Services LLC
UFCW International Union
Bid Night Entertainment Group
The Mount Vernon Company
InsideOut Sports and Entertainment
Hand Surgery PC
About A Day for Democracy
A Day for Democracy is a NON-partisan initiative founded by CEOs to encourage employers across the U.S. to take a pledge to help increase voter participation in the U.S. In taking the pledge, these leaders are committing to take action to give employees time off to vote, and/or to help workers register and access their right to vote – in local, state and national elections – on their terms, whether at polling locations or from the safety of their own home. To learn more, and to join CEOs across the U.S. in taking this pledge, visit www.aDayforDemocracy.com.
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SOURCE A Day for Democracy