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UUCivs: UUAA's Civic Engagement Team

Vote Your Values

 

UUCivs aims to inform and inspire UUAA members and friends about civic and political actions we can each take to advocate for all voices to be heard in the democratic process. We believe sustained efforts will result in a more just and equitable society.

 


WHAT WE ACCOMPLISHED—TOGETHER

A record 5.5 million Michiganders voted in the November 3 election, and despite a significant health crisis, millions of first-time absentee voters, allegations of fraud, fears of voter intimidation, and systemic obstacles to voting, Michigan’s election was safe, fair, successful, and certified! 

Thank you to everyone who donated their time and/or gave financial support to our Get Out The Vote efforts! It all made a difference!

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Above: Poll workers in Jackson staying safe and voters signing up for absentee ballots.

 

 

Prior to the August primary, UUCivs began networking with other voting advocacy groups to identify where we could be most useful in local GOTV efforts. We decided to prioritize education on absentee voting and created a Voting Kit that included everything needed to vote safely from home— and we focused on under-served communities in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti. 

By the time we reached the November election, we were working with over 36 community partners and had distributed over 9600 fliers/postcards and 583 Voting Kits. We had hosted 8 Zoom training sessions and held 42 socially distanced in-person voting events. We also served as the graphic design and copy shop for grass-roots community partners, racing to get them voting materials as they fanned out across their communities. UUCivs volunteers did text & phone banking, helped voters get to the polls, staffed polling places, and worked with Election Defenders, a non-partisan organization, to make sure voting was safe, accessible, and fun!

 

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Above: Helping Ann Arbor voters get to the polls and Election Defenders in Dearborn.

 

 One particular partnership made a powerful impact: the Voting Access for All Coalition (VAAC).  The energy and enthusiasm of the VAAC members helped thousands of currently and formerly incarcerated citizens and people with a felony record get access to voting information for themselves and their families. Hundreds of fliers and posters were handed out and displayed in Detroit and Pontiac neighborhoods, led by local leaders who had a huge impact on encouraging, educating, and energizing eligible voters. VAAC’s important work was even profiled in the Detroit Free Press. We experienced the value and power of working in partnership with other wonderful groups striving to make their communities better.

 

VAAC Zoom Meeting  VAAC at Rosa Parks plaza

 VAAC Team members organizing on a Zoom call and at the Rosa Parks transit center in Detroit.

 


What’s next for UUCivs?

We’re looking to the next stage: working with our new leaders to build a more just society, holding our elected leaders accountable on that journey, and striving to strengthen civic connection in the midst of ongoing division. 

HISTORY OF UUCIVS’ ACTION

UUCivs grew out of the workshop Justice Day at UUAA  in February, 2017. We called ourselves “UUAA Indivisible” for three years until the Spring of 2020 when the Indivisible movement became more associated with partisan politics as the electoral season ramped up. Throughout our history, our group has mobilized progressive, non-partisan citizen engagement through events such as: 

  • Co-hosting a Town Hall at UUAA with US Representative Debbie Dingell and three Michigan State Representatives, and also holding a Meet & Greet with US Senator Debbie Stabenow. Here is independent filmmaker Donald Harrison’s  5-min video on the Town Hall featuring lively exchanges in our full sanctuary and an article about the town hall  in MLive 
  • Presenting a “phone activism” workshop on techniques for calling our government representatives.
  • Hosting a “Promote the Vote” launch party, in conjunction with the League of Women Voters, where attendees were trained on gathering signatures for a petition to put a proposal on the November 2018 ballot making both voter registration and voting more convenient in our state. 
  • Organizing a community screening of the documentary Free Trip to Egypt, a film about the power of bringing people of diverse backgrounds together and the value of deep listening. 
  • Co-sponsoring, with UUAA’s Friends of Restorative Justice and the Challenging Racism group, a forum on the Washtenaw County Prosecuting Attorney’s role in providing dignity, healing, and a safe community in our justice system for victims and offenders.

Promote The Vote Sign

 

 

KEY UUCIVS COALITION PARTNERS -- ELECTION 2020Logo Vote

-- MUUSJN (Michigan UU Social Justice Network)

-- Voting Access for All (VAAC)

            -- “Use Your Voice” video

-- Interfaith Council for Peace & Justice (ICPJ)

-- League of Women Voters of Ann Arbor Area

-- UU the Vote

 

UUCIVS Information

Co-Chairs are in transition. At present, contact Carrie Hatcher-Kay, Mary Ann Hergenrother, or Joanie Parker at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Join the UUCivs Zoom Meeting on Sunday, February 7 at 3pm to help us shape what’s next and how we respond to these times. Watch your UUAA E-News for the Meeting ID or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Then stay tuned for future actions!

Questions or to get on the UUCivs Email List: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.