Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Door Knocking to Get Out the Vote in Newhallville

"If you have a vowel in the last letter of your last name, and if Trump gets elected president, if you leave the country and try to return you will not be entering this country again" Barbara Moreno a longtime resident of the Newhallville community strongly stated at her door last Saturday. She emphasized the importance of getting out the vote in this year's presidential election.

The door knocking team encountered many such conversations during the canvass of several streets in Ward 20. The main focus of these walks by the Winchester-Newhall Club is to mobilize, inform, and engage residents on their voter rights and the importance of voting for candidates who will champion their interests and needs.

Newhallville is a largely African American neighborhood with deep economic needs and high unemployment. Ward 20 has become one of the highest Democratic turnout wards in New Haven, electing a health care worker and union steward to the Board of Alders as part of a city-wide coalition. A high voter turnout in New Haven is key to election results state-wide.

At one door, a young woman said there was no point in voting because the whole system is bad. When she said she was a fast food worker and a student at Gateway Community College, the team told her that Hillary supports a $15/hr minimum wage and free tuition. She registered to vote, and will also receive information about the fight for $15.

Each week, small groups knock on doors and talk to residents, making sure they knew their voting poll station, checking to see if they are registered to vote and if not encouraging them of the importance especially this year. They are asked to sign a pledge to vote on November 8 and are asked if they would like to receive the People's World regularly.

Residents who have felonies are informed they can restore their voting rights, and given a flier with information provided from the website of the Connecticut Secretary of State.

In this election, the weekly door knocking

This weekly canvassing has been enjoyable and successful. It is helping inform the community and inspire participation and turnout.

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