Prior to the election in 2008, Maple City Health Care Center registered new voters. We put up signs in our waiting lobby and we used our digital signage system to encourage people to register. All the signs and the registration forms were in both Spanish and English. Our front desk folks asked each patient if they were interested in registering or needed to change their address.
We registered 30 new voters.
Our staff reviewed all the registration forms and delivered them to the County Clerk. Later, we checked the voter registration database and discovered that two of our registrants were not entered. We called the clerk’s office. The clerk explained the problems she was having with the registrations. We contacted the registrants to work out the problems. With our advocacy, all of our registrants ended up in the voter database.
On Election Day, our medical director, James Nelson Gingerich, was volunteering at one of the neighborhood polling places when he was effusively accosted by Alma Tillis, one of our patients.
Alma’s warm embrace was a result of joy. It was the first time she had ever voted in Goshen. She wanted to express her gratitude.
Alma explained to James that because she had spent some time in prison, she assumed the jail time prohibited her from voting. When our front desk person encouraged her to register, Alma expressed her reservation, but then learned that she could, indeed, register and vote.