As pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists, we advocate for children both inside and outside the walls of our clinics, practices and hospitals.
In an election year, we also have an indispensable opportunity to educate our patients, families and the public about the importance of voting. Voting is one of the most powerful tools we have to influence public policies that impact children and families and address health inequities in our communities.
That is why I hope you will join me in voting like children’s futures depend on it this November.
Election Day is only 42 days away, and today is National Voter Registration Day. Making sure you are registered and ready to vote– and encouraging eligible patients, families and colleagues to do the same – is just one simple way we can engage in the process.
The Academy launched its Get Out the Vote campaign this summer, with a focus on the connection between health equity and voting and a suite of new resources. All of this information and more can be found at AAP.org/VoteKids.
Together, we can work to ensure that children’s needs are heard and prioritized this election.
Here are just a few ways to do that:
- Check your voter registration and know your options for casting your ballot. Vote.org has more, including information on state deadlines and requirements.
- Share the Rx to Vote & Fill Out the Census (English and Spanish versions) with your patients’ families. Print out this “prescription” to share with families in your practice, encouraging them to register to vote and complete the census, which will end on Sept. 30.
- Encourage eligible patients and their families to register to vote or request to vote by mail using tools available here, including a digital badge backer and phone background, from the nonpartisan voter registration effort VotER.
- Post messages on social media using #VoteKids about why you plan to vote like children’s futures depend on it. Here you can find sample social media messages and graphics, including a new social media cover photo!
I would also encourage you to listen to today’s Pediatrics On Call podcast episode for more on what is at stake, how elections impact communities and the importance of voting.
Thank you for all you do and for your work to advocate for children in your care and across the country. Looking forward to continuing to share the #VoteKids message in the weeks ahead!