Program Driven by Students Demand Action Volunteers Using Virtual Tools to Help Register People in Their Online Networks; Goal Was Accomplished One Month Ahead of Schedule, Efforts Will Continue
NEW YORK — Students Demand Action, a grassroots arm of Everytown for Gun Safety, today released the following statement after surpassing its goal of helping over 100,000 young people register to vote ahead of the 2020 election through its student volunteer-driven virtual organizing program. With just 25 days until the election, Students Demand Action volunteers — many of whom are too young to vote — are continuing to help voters register and get out the vote to elect gun sense champions up and down the ballot.
“We may have hit our voter registration goal, but we aren’t stopping anytime soon,” said Alanna Miller, a leader of the Students Demand Action voter registration program and a second-year student at Duke University. “Between classes, extracurriculars, family, friends and so many other things, Students Demand Action volunteers have continued to help voters register because we know that this election could change the tide of gun violence in the United States. We are all in for November — there is no time to waste.”
“The fact that Students Demand Action volunteers helped 100,000 voters register nearly one full month ahead of schedule is just the latest proof that America’s future is fully committed to gun safety,” said John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety. “The NRA simply cannot match the gun safety movement’s resources, energy, or organizing ability, and the remarkable achievement of these young volunteers strongly suggests that won’t be changing anytime soon.”
So far, over 2,000 Students Demand Action volunteers have helped more than 100,000 young voters register by making more than 120,000 calls, sending more than 500,000 text messages, holding more than 500 phone banking shifts, and hosting more than 200 events. Volunteers have spent more than 58 days — or more than 84,000 minutes — worth of time on the phone, with no sign of slowing down.
Students Demand Action’s voter registration initiative has included:
- Investing $1.5 million, including hiring at least a dozen paid organizers focused on helping voters register in key battleground states;
- Establishing virtual field offices, where students gathered to strategize how to meet voter registration goals. Virtual field offices have access to cutting edge organizing tools and technology, including Zoom, Slack, Icebreaker, Hustle, Team, and more, giving volunteers the tools they need to be successful in virtual voter registration efforts;
- Extensive training in relational organizing, which involved leveraging relationships to encourage others to vote. This organizing method proved to be more effective than traditional canvassing, allowing volunteers to register their friends, family, classmates, and acquaintances. Students Demand Action volunteers deployed this tactic digitally, while continuing to practice physical distancing.