Voting in 2020: Expert insights on why your vote matters

Voting in 2020: Expert insights on why your vote matters

Providence has launched a campaign called Vote for Health which seeks to encourage patients, caregivers (employees), and community members to vote and explain how voting helps shape the way health care and other services get funded and administered across the communities we serve. The campaign has three main goals:

  1. Support voter registration, specifically engaging with voters ages 18-35
  2. Offer education on why every vote counts and how voters can help their communities
  3. Activate voters across the seven states Providence serves and beyond

Earlier this week, host Melissa Tizon captured insights from Providence’s Senior Vice President of Government Affairs and Social Responsibility, Ali Santore along with Tappan Vickery, Field Director at Headcount about the importance of voting in the 2020 election. The discussion ranges from health policy to voter disenfranchisement to ways to get involved in the 2020 election.

Directly below is the 30-minute video discussion. Scroll down to read highlights from the discussion. 

Tizon: How is this year’s election different from other years?

Vickery: We’re not in the field, so that’s different. We realized that we don’t have a pandemic-proof democracy, we realized that in March. Given that different states have different processes for voting, and we’ve responded by focusing on hyper-local issues to drive engagement. People have freedom of choice to vote. That’s a great thing about America. I hope the percentage of voters across groups go up significantly to reflect the diversity that is the United States.

We also have a lot of procedural barriers to keep people from voting. We are working to break down those barriers by educating them on their options for voting. We hope to see the participation rate go way up.

Tizon: What is the vote for health campaign? Why is Providence involved?

Santore: We have a promise at Providence with three key pillars: know me, care for me, ease my way. We strive to translate that into all of our initiatives, so when it comes to voting we’re really trying to ease peoples’ way by making it easier for them to get information about health issues that are on the agenda this election cycle.

Tizon: How does health play into this election?

Santore: Public policy has a tremendous impact on individuals and communities – from health coverage, cost of coverage, access to safe and affordable housing, the health of our planet. Our vision is health for a better world and policy plays a big role in making that future a reality.

Vickery: As someone with children and aging parents, I’m seeing the clear impact that health policy has on communities. “We do better as a country if we have policies that support good public health.”

Tizon: Headcount has a campaign called the Future is Voting. What is that?

Vickery: This campaign was inspired by the Parkland shooting. The call to action to students in 2018 was for them to get registered to vote, and since then we’ve been targeting soon-to-be youth voters to help them understand the power of their vote. We want to engage first-time voters to get them active in the democratic process. “We do believe that this voting block will define who we are as a country…if we listen.”

Tizon: If people do choose to go to the polls how do they do it safely?

Vickery: People working at the polls will have complete PPE, and we ask all voters to follow the CDC recommendations to wear masks and practice social distancing.

In closing, Santore added, “It’s so important that people understand that their vote matters. Decisions that will be influenced by our votes will impact communities for years to come.”

Visit our voting resource hub at providence.org/vote to learn how to register to vote and explore a breakdown of health-related issues across our seven-state healthcare system. 

#voteforhealth | #healthisahumanright

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