Oct 29, 2018
We talk as a nation about the imperative of voting but probably not enough about the challenges voters are facing now, just days before the mid-term elections. Ashley Allison, Executive Vice President of The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, talks to Power Station about the All Voting is Local Campaign, which is building support for, and tackling systemic barriers to, voting in Ohio, Florida, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Arizona. This campaign operates as a collaborative with national partners including the ACLU and the American Constitution Society, and local nonprofit partners in communities directly impacted by systemic barriers. Their collective advocacy, litigation, organizing and where possible, partnership with supervisors of elections, has increased the numbers of poll workers and bilingual translators, improved accessibility to voting sites in communities of color and by disabled people.
As Ashley explains, this Campaign is one of many embraced by The Leadership Conference, a voice for over 200 powerhouse coalition members, including labor unions, civil rights and LGBTQ organizations. She shares her own journey in social change advocacy, informed by her childhood in Youngstown, Ohio, her experiences as a young teacher in Bed-Study, Brooklyn, and as a lawyer, serving in the Obama Administration's Office of Public Engagement. Ashley is strategic, passionate and inspiring. She is also inspired by others, including Desmond Meade, President of The Florida Rights Restoration Coalition, a leaders on felon disenfranchisement issues, whose work is making a national impact.