This page is designed to aid community members when planning to conduct a voter registration drive. To conduct a successful voting drive, we recommend you follow these steps:
Find your closest CAIR chapter.
If CAIR does not have a chapter in your state, gather two to four members of the community to help coordinate the drive.
Eid festivals and Jumaah prayers are excellent opportunities. Clear your event with those in charge of the location. Make sure that the timing is convenient and fits into the normal schedule of the community. It's always recommended that you keep in mind that you are serving your community: make registering to vote easy for them. Don't expect them to come to you.
The rules change from state to state. In many states the office of the secretary of state is responsible for overseeing elections and information can be found on his or her website. Perform an internet search for "state board of elections" along with your state's name, or simply look up the phone number. Many states will give you forms to have filled out (make sure you ask for the proper method of returning the completed forms), others require attending a short, simple certification course. Make sure that you request enough registration materials. Alternatively, call CAIR and ask for assistance. You can also ask CAIR for free copies of CAIR's Civic Participation Guide. These can be given away during your drive.
The following questions are common from people registering to vote, ask the elections board representative for the answers: Who can register to vote in the state? Do I have to register by political party? Do I have to re-register if I move? When is the latest I can register for the next election? Do I have to re-register for each election? Where do I vote? When can I expect my voter registration card to arrive?
Announce it in advance, perhaps by hanging fliers in local mosques. Ask mosques to announce the drive at Jumaah prayers. Call everyone you have in your email and cell phone contact lists and ask them to commit to calling five other people to invite them to register during your drive.
Send a media advisory to your local media outlets. Include the answers to what you are doing, when you are doing it, exact street address of where it will occur and a contact name and phone number. Events of this nature are an excellent opportunity to obtain positive media coverage for the community. You can call CAIR and ask for help with this.
Make sure you have read all the form's instructions carefully, and help people in filling out the form. Don't be shy. Approach people and ask if they are registered to vote. Call attention to your effort. At the very least you will need: pens, clipboards and signs announcing that people can register to vote.
Completed voter registration forms should be sent to or dropped off at your state election office.
Want to know more? Need help or advice? Call CAIR and talk to our government affairs department.