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Spread The Vote aims to close the gap between registered voters and voter turnout by educating and empowering voters. One of the most common barriers for disenfranchised voters is living in a state with restrictive voter ID laws. Over 21 million Americans lack the ID they need to live full lives. At Project ID, we help members of our communities obtain the IDs they need for jobs, housing, health care, and, most importantly, identity. We help voters get the IDs that they need to get to the polls and provide practical, non-partisan voter education.
Since our 2017 inception, we’ve made two important discoveries. 1) Our clients have gained far more from their new IDs than the ability to vote. For many, it’s the key to a promised job, healthcare, housing and social services. 2) Those who already have ID in hand are often hesitant to head to the polls, not only because they don’t have a clear understanding of who, or what, they are voting for, but also because the processes involved with voting can be intimidating, especially for those who have never voted before.
These truths led our organization to evolve, and we are now offering two distinct programs that work together toward a common goal- increasing civic engagement and voter turnout. We continue to offer direct assistance to the 21 million eligible voters who need IDs. Volunteers and staff members work directly with our clients to determine which supplementary documents are needed to procure an ID. Often, new or replacement birth certificates, social security cards and proofs of residency must be paid for. This presents a challenge for many in marginalized communities, not only due to cost restraints (the average cost is $40 per ID), but also because of a lack of a mailing address, difficulty obtaining out-of-state documents, and access to transportation are among the additional barriers that they face. Spread The Vote partners with individuals and maintains consistent communication and support until their ID is in-hand.