As Election Day draws near, more than 700 companies have joined a movement to take the day off so employees have the flexibility to cast their ballots. And, Haven Collective is one of them.
We believe that voting is one of the most democratic and patriotic things you can do so we encourage our community to make it a priority.
To that end, Haven Collective reception services will be unavailable on Tuesday, November 3rd. You’ll find us casting our own ballots and volunteering at the polls instead.
So that you’re ready for Election Day, dive into this information, and follow the links below*. Your voice matters. Here’s how you can ensure it’s heard and counted.
Respond to the 2020 Census
The census determines how many seats each state gets in the House. And determines how federal spending should be divided. If you haven’t filled it out, get to it before October 15th. (Here’s why an accurate headcount matters.)
Oct. 5: Register to Vote
In Ohio, you haven’t missed the deadline to register to vote yet, but it’s fast approaching on Monday, October 5. So, if you’ve been on the fence about it, get to it here. AND, if you aren’t sure if you’re registered, check out the Ohio Secretary of State’s site to check your registration status. (Not an Ohio resident, check your registration status here.)
Research Prior to Casting Your Ballot
You probably feel like you know everything there is to know to cast your ballot for President and Vice President, but how much do you really know about everyone else on the ballot? In my area, I’ll be asked to decide who to vote into no less than 25 other offices. Sounds overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. Start by reviewing the ballot now so you can get comfortable ahead of time. You can download a sample here. (That’s the same link to find out who your current representatives are, which is also helpful.)
Once you know who’s on the ballot, you can Google until your heart’s content, or you can check out BuckeyeBallot.com for a complete rundown of candidates running for Federal, State, and Judicial offices along with their official websites. We know just how distracting Google results can be, so that site will keep you focused on the task at hand.
These down-ballot contests are incredibly important today, but also in the future. Many of the elected officials (and judges) we select today advance up to more prominent positions down the road, so do your due diligence today.
Oct. 6 – Nov. 2: Early Voting
In Ohio, you can cast your ballot early (in-person) starting Tuesday, October 6. The schedule for early voting is set by the Secretary of State, and in every county but Lucas, Miami, and Summit, early voting happens at the county board of elections.
Weekday voting at boards of election is accessible 8 AM – 5 PM, with the first weekend availability occurring Saturday, October 24th. The final day to vote early in person is Monday, Nov. 2. But keep in mind, voting wraps up early at 2 p.m.
Oct. 31 – Request Absentee Ballot
If you’re unavailable to vote in-person or you don’t feel comfortable doing so, you can request an absentee ballot be mailed to you. While the technical deadline for the request can go clear out to October 31st, it’s best to request it as soon as possible. Mail delays are not uncommon and this year there have been many more requests for absentee ballots than in years past. Give yourself ample time to request, receive, and mail back your absentee ballot.
Deadlines to return your Absentee Ballot are:
By Mail: November 2nd (Post Mark)
In-Person: November 3rd at 7:30 PM
Nov. 3 – Vote In-Person at your local Polling location
Maybe it’s old-fashioned, but voting in-person, on election day has a certain magical feeling about it. Plus, you’ll get that fun “I Voted” sticker we all love so much. Where will you cast that ballot though? Voting on Election Day will happen at polling locations based on where you live. With COVID-19 looming, it’s possible some polling locations could move from where you’re accustomed. The Secretary of State’s Office has a useful tool for looking up where you’re supposed to cast your ballot.
There is still a shortage of poll volunteers this year though. So, if you’re healthy and have the opportunity to give back, please sign up to make sure our election continues to be accessible to everyone.
However you choose to vote is less important than that you choose to vote. During the 2016 national election, only 58% of eligible voters cast a ballot, down from both the 2012 and 2008 elections. It also means that voter turnout is lower in the US than in most other developed countries. It’s not uncommon for candidates to be elected with razor-thin margins, including presidential candidates, so don’t think your vote doesn’t count.
We encourage you to take the November 3rd off and get out the vote.
*All Dates and Links provided are based on Ohio votes. Please check for critical voting dates in other states by going here.