Voting Rights Alert #6: Campus GOTV-In-A-Box

[GOTV means Get-Out-The-Vote]

Best Practices:

On Sunday, November 4, send an “all-faculty” message asking your colleagues to remind students in their classes that Tuesday, November 6, is Election Day, where the poll is, when it’s open, and what they need to bring if identification is required, including what types of ID are acceptable.

On Monday, November 5, put signs up around campus directing students to their polling place, its hours, and the necessary identification.

Also, ask your President or the relevant Dean to send an “all-students” message on November 5, urging students to exercise their democratic rights and providing the relevant information.

Remember the law:  

First, according to the Supreme Court in Symm v. United States (1979), students have a right to vote where they attend school, and cannot be barred from voting because they are students.

Second, your college or university’s administration has not only the right but the legal responsibility to facilitate student voting (the Federal Higher Education Act requires colleges and universities to make a “good faith effort” to distribute voter registration materials to all students).

Third, your institution is a 501(c3) charitable organization and cannot engage in any partisan activity, so make sure that you do not in any way encourage students to vote for particular candidates or parties.

Finally:  if you are encountering problems with your students exercising their right to vote, please email me at

Van Gosse, H-PAD Co-Chair