Press Release 2015
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Group calls for incentive program to boost voting by the poor
Making elections more democratic
January 16, 2015 Edmonton
The Group Poor Vote Turnout is asking all the political parties to support implementing a voting incentive program.
“Practically speaking The Poor (20% of voters ) are disenfranchised because the poor often do not have time to vote. They are too busy just trying to survive,” said, Poor Vote Turnout member Breezy Brian Gregg. “To enfranchise the poor, we are calling for the government to bring in a voting incentive program where every voter is given $100 cash when they cast their secret ballot. This money can be clawed back at income tax time from those who are not needy and it will allow a poor person to make their own arrangements to vote.”
This should not be confused with vote buying where a voter is paid to vote for a particular candidate.
Studies in the US have shown that this form of voter incentive can really encourage more low-income people to vote and become engaged in the political process.
One study conducted in 2010 in Lancaster, Calif., in northern Los Angeles County, by Fordham University professor Costas Panagopoulos, found nominal incentives like a few bucks don’t do much to increase turnout, but a few more dollars is enough of an incentive to convince a larger percentage of people to vote. Source: The Journal of Politics, Vol. 75, No. 1, January 2013, Pp. 266-280
Another study by Victoria Anne Shineman, Assistant Professor, University of Pittsburgh, shows that “ If You Mobilize Them, They Will Become Informed. Experimental Evidence that Information Acquisition is Endogenous to Costs and Incentives to Participate“ http://ices.gmu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/If-You-Mobilize-Them-They-Will-Become-Informed-Experimental-Evidence-that-Information-Acquisition-is-Endogenous-to-Costs-and-Incentives-to-Participate-by-Shineman.pdf
Poor Vote Turnout began meeting last fall to promote voting by the poor. Public Meetings are Wednesday evenings from 7:00 – 8:00 P.M. Rossdale Hall 10135 – 96 Avenue Edmonton
In 2014 at these Public Meetings guest speakers have included Brian Mason then leader of the Alberta NDP, Florence Ellis from The Elizabeth Fry Society, Raj Sherman leader of the Alberta Liberals, Naomi Rankin leader of the Alberta Communist Party and Linda Dumont Editor of Alberta Street News.
The group is working to arrange for the other leaders to speak; Jim Prentice, Heather Forsyth, and Rachel Notley.
Greg Clark leader of the Alberta Party is coming to speak at our meeting Wednesday January 21, 7:00 P.M. Rossdale Hall 10135 – 96 Avenue Edmonton
Poor Vote Turnout – promoting voting by the poor
Breezy Brian Gregg