TRENTON – Wednesday, New Jersey State AFL-CIO joined with its local affiliates and community allies from the statewide grassroots coalition Working Families United for New Jersey, Inc. to kickoff a statewide voter registration effort.
“Voter registration is one of the most important aspects in the election process,” explained New Jersey AFL-CIO President Charles Wowkanech. “Voter registration is about empowering those who at times feel powerless. With so many critical issues on the line, it is imperative to register New Jersey’s working families to vote and give our communities a voice regarding our state’s most pressing challenges.”
“The labor movement continues to fight not only for its members, but for all working men and women in the community,” added Wowkanech. “We are all in this together – we are all part of the community and share many of the same concerns such as educating our children, creating jobs, ensuring public safety, updating and improving our transportation system, and providing much needed relief for middle class families.”
“We are here today to formulate how to best utilize our collective resources,” Working Families United for New Jersey, Inc. Chair Charles Hall, Jr. said. “Working Families United for New Jersey, Inc. consists of African American, Asian Pacific American, Latino, labor retiree, student, faith, and women’s groups. United by our shared values, we will educate and register working families to vote to ensure a vibrant and thriving middle class in New Jersey.”
“Democracy is only possible when a maximum number of people participle in the voting process. There are 1.5 million Latinos in New Jersey, who make up 17.7% of the population, yet, more than half of these eligible voters are unregistered,” said Labor Council for Latin American Advancement President Milton Rosado. “It is a priority of this coalition to register as many voters as possible to maximize participation in New Jersey’s democratic process so that working families have a strong and meaningful voice in our state’s future.”
Wowkanech said, “It is no coincidence that our voter registration efforts begin the week before Memorial Day. On this day, we honor the men and women who died to defend the values of our country and preserve democracy for its citizens. We believe that one way we can honor our fallen heroes is to exercise the rights for which they fought so courageously.”
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