Updates

Election Protection

Early voting is here! We work year-round to ensure Virginians have unencumbered access to the ballot and can cast their votes safely and without confusion or intimidation. Through a robust Election Protection program that focuses on day-of rapid response efforts to mitigate issues at polling locations, working with local election administrators to troubleshoot anticipated issues, and poll monitoring and voter assistance during peak Early Voting options and Election Day, we work to uphold voting rights and win increased access for Virginia voters. We do this work in collaboration with national organizations, our partners, and community members like you to make sure every voter is informed and their rights are protected.

Your help is critical to protecting our election. Please share this with your networks and sign up for a shift today: you can volunteer for a Saturday or Sunday shift during early voting or sign up to or assist with Election Day support. Please share with your members, volunteers, and supporters. Click here to volunteer with us during Early Voting & Election Day!

Important Dates

Redistricting

Redistricting is in the homestretch! The Virginia Redistricting Commission’s 45-day window to create and confirm state legislature districts is coming to a close on October 10th, with the final vote taking place October 11th. The commission has been meeting more often and for longer meetings (several meetings this week went past the 7 and 8-hour marks). Next week, the public hearings will begin. Our team has put together VA State House maps that we are sending to the commission. The public hearings will be on October 4-7th. There are a number of ways members of the public can help shape the maps as they are being developed, here are things you can do:

  • Comment on a map – click here
  • Comment on the Commission’s work – click here
  • Propose a map – click here
  • Propose a “community of interest” – click here
  • Sign up to speak at an upcoming public hearing that will take place the week of October 4 – click here
  • Sign up to speak at one of the upcoming Commission meetings – click here
  • Recommend organizations to include in future Commission outreach and communications – click here
  • Join us during the commission meeting by signing up at: mapva.us/accountability.

You can also sign up for a “Making Sense of Redistricting” session with VCET’s Redistricting Manager here

Questions? Email our Redistricting Manager at Erin@engageva.org.

 News

Virginia

Just two weeks after the removal of Gen. Robert E. Lee from Monument Avenue, Richmond city and state officials dedicated a monument that honors the struggle for freedom and equality by centuries of African Americans. “With those figures in the forefront, Richmond unveiled a new Emancipation and Freedom Monument on Wednesday — commemorating a far different set of rebels than the Confederate statues that have been coming down for the past year.” [WASHINGTON POST]. Read more.

Redistricting

As Virginia’s redistricting process continues, several groups throughout the Commonwealth are urging the map drawers not to break up communities they say have been historically overlooked. “Progress Virginia hosted a press conference over Zoom with organizations and individuals focused on people of color and civic engagement to include the Virginia Civic Engagement Table, CASA VA, Virginia Coalition for Immigrant Rights, Latino Justice, NAKASEC and several other individuals. The speakers said they’re worried the redistricting process could dilute voting strength on the basis of race, color, or language. All believe there is a lot at stake in this process, and some have developed alternative maps based on these concerns.” [WDBJ] Read more.

Upcoming Events

October 2 – Join the Women’s March on Saturday, October 2nd at Diversity Richmond 10:30 am-1:30 pm. This is the march to keep BANS OFF OUR BODIES. Sign up to join the march here. Or if you’re interested in volunteering to organize the march, please sign up here.  

Housing Reparations Listening Sessions

October 9 – Mark your calendar for an 11 am community listening session on reparative homeownership. Organized by the Virginia Poverty Law Center, Virginia Legislative Black Caucus, and Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy to get feedback from community members on a draft pilot program proposal for the 2022 General Assembly session. Register here.

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