Do you consistently vote in local, state and federal elections? Do you vote in presidential, mid-term and special elections? Do you research and determine the issues and agenda that a particular candidate supports? If you answered yes to all of these questions that is great. It’s a significant part of our civic duty and responsibility.
The voting process has two key parts, there is voter education & voter engagement. Voter education is seeking information about elections, candidates, and issues. Most citizens navigate this process without problems. Voter engagement includes the act of voting, hopefully with the knowledge gained from research. But there is a second part of voter engagement and that is participation after you vote. Attending city or town council meetings and attending state general assembly sessions is just as important as casting a ballot.
Our daily routines are filled with family and other responsibilities but everything done by legislatures impacts our day to day lives. Something as simple as the width of a sidewalk or its existence may happen in a local council meeting. Whether federal funding is accepted for relief of medical expenses may impact your elder relatives.
Even if you’re not able to attend in person most meetings are streamed or recorded. Just like you take time to watch your favorite recorded television program, take time to learn what is happening in the legislature that impacts you. Google the name of your city or town to find their website and meeting dates. Do the same for your county and state to find meeting dates and locations. No one knows what is important to you more than you, so be engaged but above all participate after you vote.