From Greta Thunberg, who at the age of 15 began standing outside the Swedish parliament to demand action on climate change (a campaign that grew worldwide and became known as the “Greta Effect”) to the first graders at West Hollywood Elementary School, who recently set out to identify problems in their community and find solutions — young people are stepping up and out more than ever to address both worldwide and local issues.
The latest example of that is a campaign to get out the vote launched by Eitan Prins-Trachtenberg, a junior at Brentwood School who lives in West Hollywood, with friends Nikka Makhani and Hannah Taheri. The campaign is called The Ballot Project.
With Oct. 19 as the deadline for registering online to vote (which can be done by clicking here), they decided to target young voters who might be unaware of where to register to vote to let them know that they can actually register online.
TheBallotProject.com website notes that the United States has only a 55% voter turnout rate, which ranks it 26th in the world. With a turnout of 87.2% Belgium is the world leader. “The Ballot Project seeks to raise awareness for the issues surrounding voter turnout in America and to get more people to register,” says the website. “We are a nonpartisan group, believing everyone should vote no matter which candidates they support.”
“We distribute flyers around Los Angeles, particularly in shops and small businesses, that have a readily accessible QR code that links to the voter registration site,” Prins-Trachtenberg told WEHOville. “We spent all of our Sunday putting these posters up on Santa Monica from Salt and Straw to Kitchen 24, and they were received incredibly from both customers and staff.”
As of today, 28,940 ballots have been mailed to those West Hollywood residents already registered according to Political Data Inc.’s voter tracking website. As of this afternoon, 5% have been returned to the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk to be counted.
Those who aren’t sure whether they have registered to vote can check that online. And, in addition to returning the ballot by mail (it must be postmarked by the Nov. 3 Election Day), you also can drop off your ballot at three locations in West Hollywood. There are ballot drop-off boxes on Sweetzer Avenue south of Santa Monica Boulevard and just behind City Hall, in front of the L.A. Public Library at 625 N. San Vicente Boulevard, south of Santa Monica, and outside the Plummer Park Community Center at 7377 Santa Monica Blvd.
There also are several places in and near West Hollywood where you can vote in person (wearing a face covering of course) beginning Oct. 30. They are:
- The Kimpton La Peer Hotel. 627 N. La Peer Drive, on the lobby rooftop. It is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. from Oct. 30 until election day, when it is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Laurel Elementary School. 925 N. Hayworth Ave. in the auditorium. It is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. from Oct. 30 until election day, when it is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Fairfax Senior Citizen Center, 7929 Melrose Ave., in the auditorium. It is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. from Oct. 30 until election day, when it is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.,
- Iranian American Jewish Federation, 1317 N. Crescent Heights Blvd., in Sapper Hall. It is open from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. from Oct. 30 until election day, when it is open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.,