Fighting for the Right to Vote
Our work to secure voting access is more than just a struggle for constitutional rights, it is a struggle for human dignity
Since our earliest years, Project HOME has actively worked on protecting and promoting voting rights. Many of the people in our community have been historically marginalized from voting. We have had to challenge legal roadblocks as well as prevailing myths that have kept people from the polls. And of course, situations of homelessness and poverty are themselves enormous obstacles to exercising this basic right.
So we are deeply concerned about the current political debates over voting. Both individual states and the federal government are grappling with issues of voting rights and voter access. Some states are passing laws designed to “protect voter integrity.” Unfortunately, from our years of experience working on the ground, we are well aware how the restrictions and requirements in these kinds of laws can function to disenfranchise low-income and socially marginalized citizens and keep them from the polls.
Amid the swirling politics of the issue, the real question is one of who gets to vote—and an even deeper question (one that has longed haunted our national history): Who truly belongs, who truly matters in our democracy? Who is sufficiently American to have a say in our democratic process?
Such questions are at the core of Project HOME’s mission. Our work to secure voting access is more than just a struggle for constitutional rights. It is a struggle for human dignity. We believe that every person has value and has a voice. Every person matters, whatever their situations and struggles in life are. Every person has gifts, and our society is healthiest when all citizens are able to flourish and contribute their gifts. In the realm of politics, this means that every person in this society—including those who may be struggling with economic vulnerability and social discrimination—should be able to exercise the basic right of voting. Only then can we closer to fulfilling our national promise of democracy. And we will be a stronger nation for it.
Every person in our community counts—and their vote should be counted. We will continue our efforts to ensure voting rights for everyone, and we will continue to continue on the path that brings all of us home.
Some important facts about voting in Pennsylvania:
You can vote if you are a U.S. citizen who is at least 18 years old on Election Day, and a resident of Pennsylvania for at least 30 days before the election.
You can vote when you are homeless; just use the address of a place where you get mail.
You can vote when released from jail or prison—even with a felony conviction from Pennsylvania or another state.
You can vote when you are on probation, parole, or house arrest.
You can vote while in jail awaiting trial.
You can vote while serving time for a misdemeanor.
For more information on voting rights, go to projecthome.org/vote