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Philly Group Brings Joy to the Polls; Teenagers Increasingly Politically Minded; and More

Philly group bringing joy to voters trapped in hours-long early voting lines.

With less than a week to go until the 2020 presidential election, the number of people voting early either in-person or through the mail is breaking records (experts predict 100 million citizens will have already voted before Nov. 3rd). For men and women who choose to do their early voting in-person, that can also mean hours spent in line before finally getting to cast your ballot. Not fun — or at least, it didn’t used to be. Thanks to a new volunteer group called The Election Defenders (a group pulled together through a coalition of progressive organizations), people waiting in line to vote can now enjoy live music and even dance as a way to pass the time until they get to vote. “There has been so much coverage and social media that has been focused on white supremacists, militias, intimidation tactics, aggressive electioneering. … We’re figuring we can do something for the voters,” Nelini Stamp, campaign director for Election Defenders told The Philadelphia Inquirer. “We are here for the voters to motivate them, to stop the demobilization efforts, and bring some joy and love and happiness to people while they wait for a really long time on line.” Election Defender events began Oct. 24th and will continue through Election Day. Live musicians will perform on flatbed trailers that travel between voting locations. There will also be Spotify playlists that can be played aloud by voters who are waiting in line. While the movement began in Philly, Stamp said it is spreading quickly and she hopes it will reach all 50 states before Election Day.

Teenagers increasingly politically minded, University of Michigan finds.

One in 12 teenagers between the ages of 13 and 18 has attended an event protesting racism or promoting police reform during 2020, according to a new survey of more than 1,000 teens conducted by the University of Michigan. Other key findings of the report: only 5% of parents whose children attended the event disapproved of them going and white parents were nearly twice as likely as Black parents (57% vs 31%) to believe teens do not belong at political demonstrations. Because 2020 has been so chaotic, the study’s co-author, research scientist Sarah Clark told science news site that “parents may have seen their teen showing a more complex interest in the world around them” and now, “a substantial number of these young people appear to have moved beyond discussion to taking action.”


Half of employees working at home feel isolated; this communication trick can help.

A remarkable 46% of the American workforce feels isolated due to the impact of COVID-19 and work-from-home policies. Yet surprisingly, Forbes reported 40% of workers already felt that way, even before 2020 began. The problem? While companies can create an inclusive environment through hiring practices and organization policies, they can’t do anything about a person’s sense of belonging, which is intrinsic to the individual. And if you don’t feel like you belong, you end up feeling isolated. Forbes’ advice, courtesy of Sheila Callaham, executive director of the Age Equity Alliance: Overcommunicate! “In communication strategy, there is the rule of seven,” Callaham wrote. “Communicate the same message seven times to ensure it is understood and remembered.” She advised a standing daily check-in at the start or end of the day and allowing time for questions and feedback. Ideally, do it face-to-face over a Zoom call if possible. Leave Slack and e-mail for other communication. “Communicate the company mission and vision in a way that motivates employees, and share how different teams are contributing,” she said. “And [leave] no employee out of the conversation.”


D.I. Fast Fact

$16 Trillion

Additional economic output the U.S. would have generated since 2000 if it had closed existing racial gaps.



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