Voting Rights

Reeb Project Trip to North Carolina (October 7-9) for Voter Registration/Education (Register by Sep. 26)

Join us in Raleigh/Durham, North Carolina, the weekend of October 7–9 to partner with the UU Fellowship of Raleigh and Eno River UU Fellowship in Durham to reach out to voters in the Raleigh/Durham area and make sure they are able to participate in the fall election. With all the rapid changes taking place in the North Carolina rules and procedures, talking directly to voters is critical to avoid the kind of misinformation that can reduce turnout and participation.

Register here.

we will be hosted locally for the weekend. Because of our desire to respect the travel boycott and avoid spending out of state money in North Carolina, we will only be using homestays and we will not have any hotel rooms. Many thanks to our UUFR/ERUUF partners who are working to organize enough housing for us!

IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR ALL CURRENT AND FUTURE REGISTRANTS: To encourage more volunteers and provide flexibility for those who are working or going to school, we are organizing two departure times from Harvard Street.

  • 1:00 pm (be at church by 12:30 pm) to Raleigh (arriving 7:00 pm)
  • 3:00 pm (be at church by 2:30 pm) to Durham (arriving 9:00 pm) - first come, first serve

Please let us know as soon as possible (and no later than Mon., Sep. 26) if you have a preference. The Reeb Project team will assign those with no preference based on bus and housing space. Go here for more information and to register.

Follow this link to make full or partial payments for bus transportation, and to make extra donations to cover other participants' transportation.

Saturday will be a big day of voter registration and walking neighborhoods to talk to voters and share information. Sunday morning we will all worship together and then do one more afternoon shift of work before departing for DC by bus. We will have some options for more stationary activities that do not require extensive walking. We anticipate returning late Sunday evening.

This trip is open to everyone, but there will not be any special activities organized for children or childcare, so please plan accordingly. There will also be a youth contingent; details to come about that.

We will ask for contributions toward the bus cost, but no one will be required to pay to come on the trip.

Reeb Project Anti-Racism Training

In 2014, the Reeb Proejct held anti-racism training for our volunteers who were planning to engage in voter registration and outreach in support of the fourth pillar of our mission statement: to help build the beloved community within and beyond our walls. We found it an immensely valuable experience, especially to prepare for our trip to North Carolina. All Souls' own Paula Cole Jones has agreed to return and lead this training again for us. Please sign up—especially if you are planning to go on the North Carolina trip or do the Virginia day of action—but it is important for anyone participating in our work. Sat., Sep 24, 9:00 am-1:00 pm, Eaton Room. Space is limited; please RSVP.

Reeb Project Virginia Day of Action

The Reeb Project is excited to partner with New Virginia Majority, a grassroots nonpartisan organization working to support voting rights and register voters. This fall, New Virginia Majority is particularly focused on ensuring that individuals with felony convictions who’ve recently had their rights restored get registered to vote.

We are planning a big Day of Action with them on Sat., Oct. 1, 9:00 am-1:00 pm. The meet up location is still being set but the activities will take place in Arlington and/or Alexandria. RSVP here.

In addition to joining the Day of Action, you can sign up with them directly to register voters any weekend, or even make calls from home to individuals needing to be registered. Email us at ASCVotingRights@gmail.com to get virtual phone bank information and visit the New Virginia Majority website to sign up for canvass or voter registration shifts at days and times other than the October 1 event. (Please mention you are from All Souls in the comments).

Reviving the Heart of Our Democracy: Our Work Matters More Than Ever

Great news! A federal appeals court has struck down what Ari Berman calls “The Nation’s Worst Anti-Voting Law“ in North Carolina and we see progress all over the country in pushing back against the tide of voter suppression. This is an exciting and critical time for our work. I hope you have heard Rev. Barber’s stirring call to be the “moral defibrillators of our time” and shock our democracy back into life. There is no better way to describe our mission at the Reeb Project, and no more important time than the days from now until Election Day.

We will carry out this call to “revive the heart of our democracy” by mobilizing people of faith to defend the right to vote at the most basic level. We will be making sure that every person can exercise their right to vote, and has the information they need to participate in this historic election with so many critical issues and important choices. As the summer comes to a close, and the election draws nearer, we will be moving into high gear with many opportunities to get involved and carry out our legacy.

And even as we rejoice at recent court decisions striking down egregious voter suppression, we cannot be complacent. Rapidly changing rules, even when those changes expand opportunities, can still create confusion. Direct engagement with voters to ensure they understand how, when and where to vote will counteract that confusion and realize the full potential of those legal rulings. Our work matters now more than ever.

About the All Souls Church Reeb Project for Voting Rights

The Reeb Project is named in honor of former All Souls associate minister James Reeb – beaten to death in 1965 when he went to Selma, Alabama, to march for voting rights. The Project has four goals for its work through 2016:

  1. Have impact on the national discussion on voting rights by leveraging our unique history, DC location and influence within Unitarian Universalism.
  2. Increase voter turnout in a specific North Carolina community during the 2014 and 2016 election cycles by working in solidarity with local UU congregations and people of color and progressive partner organizations.
  3. Continually raise consciousness of the injustice of our own disenfranchisement as DC residents and seek remedies to this injustice.
  4. Build the Beloved Community within and beyond our walls by developing a multiracial, multicultural voting rights team at All Souls and by working in solidarity and partnership with communities of color.

2014 – 2016 Accomplishments

  • February 2014: More than 200 All Souls members and friends march in Moral March in Raleigh, NC with the UUA as part of the Forward Together/Moral Mondays movement
  • June 2014: Flashmob on Supreme Court steps to mark gutting of Voting Rights Act
  • Summer 2014: Teach-ins with national voting rights organizations
  • September 2014: Voter registration weekend in Charlotte, NC, with UU Church of Charlotte and Piedmont UU Church registers hundreds of new voters
  • October-November 2014: Get out the Vote phone banks with Democracy North Carolina make thousands of calls, successfully increase turn out of African-American first time voters and others
  • February 2015: Reeb project returns to Moral March in Raleigh
  • March 2015: All Souls delegation travels to Selma for 50th Anniversary of bridge crossing
  • July 2015: Reeb Project joins NC NAACP for a massive teach in and Raleigh in Winston-Salem, NC to mark start of trial of Monster NC Voter Suppression law
  • Fall 2015: Reeb Project volunteers make calls with Democracy North Carolina to learn more about how to get voters to support voting rights and other progressive issues.
  • February 2016: Seventy-five member All Souls delegation, including Youth Group, travel to Raleigh for the Moral March and team with UU Fellowship of Raleigh for voter registration drive.
  • April 2016: Reeb Project supports Democracy Spring/Democracy Awakening week of action; members help lead huge teach-in at All Souls, dozens join rallies and demonstrations, and over 20 are arrested.

How to Get Involved

Want to learn more or help organize? Contact us at ASCVotingRights@gmail.com or visit www.all-souls.org/voting-rights.