November 4, 2008
First time voters benefit from a helping hand
Saturday, November 1st was the first day of our massive GOTV mobilization drive and the last day of one-stop same-day registration and early voting.
For two new voters in Wake County, union volunteers made the difference.
Courtney Willis (pictured above), age 18, had not registered to vote when Jeff Sciunas of the Letter Carriers union knocked on his door.
“I was happy union people came to pick me up so that I could vote for the first time,” Courtney said when we interviewed him for this story.
Elsewhere, Annette Farrington (pictured left), who is partially disabled, didn’t think she would be able to participate in this historic election. Thankfully, Zita Dixon of the Service Employees Union paid her a visit.
“I was glad when the people from the campaign came and got me to vote because I had never voted before.” Ms. Farrington told us. “I’m 47 years old, and I really enjoyed voting! I appreciate them coming to get me and returning me home safely.”
Jeff and Zita are two of many union members volunteering to go door-to-door and get out the vote in North Carolina.
With less than a half hour before the one-stop polls closed at 5:00 pm, both Mr. Willis and Ms. Farrington were able to register and vote for the first time ever only because two volunteers from the union knocked on their door and gave them a helping hand with a ride to the polls.
The union difference is more than a contract, better wages, and having a voice at work. It’s about empowering people to take an active role in their workplace, in their government and in their lives.
For Courtney Willis and Annette Farrington, in this election, the union made all the difference in the world.