YNPN members and friends:
As you know, the 2012 General Election is coming up this Tuesday, November 6th. As practitioners and supporters of the nonprofit sector, YNPN Chicago encourages all registered voters to get out and vote. To make the process as easy as possible, we are providing the following general, nonpartisan information about voting in the Chicagoland area in order to help you more easily navigate the process.
- Make sure that you are registered. If you are registered at a Chicago address, you can check your registration status online at chicagoelections.com. If you are registered anywhere else in Cook County (besides Chicago), you can check your status at www.cookcountyclerk.com. If you live outside of the Chicago/Cook County area, you can check your registration through services like www.canivote.org. If for any reason your record cannot be located, we recommend contacting your local election official directly.
- Find your polling place. If you are registered at a Chicago address, you can find your polling place on your Voter ID card or at chicagoelections.com. If you live elsewhere in Cook County, you can find your polling place on your Voter ID Card or at www.cookcountyclerk.com. If you are registered outside of the Chicago/Cook County area, you can find your polling place by visiting www.canivote.organd selecting “Find Your Polling Place.”
- Know what to bring. Illinois does not require voters to show an ID to vote on Election Day except in certain circumstances. Still (and particularly If you are voting for the first time), we recommend bringing identification which verifies your current address. Possible forms of ID include: 1) Voter ID card; 2) Driver’s License; 3) postmarked piece of mail or a utility bill. If you are voting in person somewhere else, you can find information about what to bring by visiting canivote.org and selecting “Know What Kind of ID to Bring.”
- Educate yourself about your vote. You can see a sample ballot for the local Chicago elections online at chicagoelections.com. In other cities, you should also be able to find sample ballots on your local board of elections website. Regardless of where you are voting, you can find nonpartisan information about the candidates at sites like www.votesmart.org. We also recommend reading local and national newspaper articles and checking out candidates’ websites before voting.
- Remind your colleagues, friends and family to vote. People are much more likely to vote when they know that others in their own personal community/network are voting as well.
If you have any other questions about voting or problems at the polls, the poll workers should be able to help you or you can call your local election officials to get more information.
Thank you for the work you do to build stronger communities through your nonprofit work. And thank you for continuing to support stronger communities and a healthy democracy through your civic participation as a voter!
-Your friends at YNPN Chicago