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Civic Engagement

Basics

Civic engagement can take on many forms-- in the public policy sphere, there are a number of ways that people can and should use their voices to represent social concerns of communities and advocate for just policies. Below are a couple of ways that people can become civically involved.

Voting is a fundamental part of the democratic process. However, Texas lags behind most of the nation...

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Civic engagement can take on many forms-- in the public policy sphere, there are a number of ways that people can and should use their voices to represent social concerns of communities and advocate for just policies. Below are a couple of ways that people can become civically involved.

Voting is a fundamental part of the democratic process. However, Texas lags behind most of the nation when it comes to voter participation. According to the Texas Secretary of State, of the more than 14 million registered voters in the state, less than five million cast a ballot in the most recent statewide election. Low voter turnout is a problem in a democracy because it means that a small group of people is making election decisions for everyone. The  government affects nearly every aspect of our lives, so being personally motivated to vote and encouraging people in your community to do so is essential.

Knowing who your representatives are and visiting them is also vital to effective engagement in the democratic process. Doing this creates wider avenues for individuals and communities to affect change and strengthen the bonds between citizens and government. Whether you are visiting in broad terms about a policy issue or advocating a more specific position on a bill or an idea, developing relationships with elected officials is key in building a culture of civic responsibility in our local communities.

Participating in democracy is one important way that we love our neighbors. Through civic engagement, we can protect the most vulnerable, be stewards of human and natural resources, address economic and racial injustice, and promote diversity and peace.

During a recent presentation, I mentioned that I was reading a book called Resisting Structural Evil, and everyone laughed. While I hadn’t intended that to be a joke line, I get it: that’s a pretty heavy title, and doesn’t sound like the “pleasure reading” that maybe I should be doing in my spare time.

Eleven-year-old Sawyer Chandler is not resting on her famous father's laurels. The daughter of Emmy-award winning actor Kyle Chandler (who played the beloved Coach Taylor on "Friday Night Lights") has launched a website and petition to raise awareness about shark finning, the cruel and unsustainable practice that is decimating tens of millions of sharks each year.

Pledge to Vote Today at PledgeToVote.org!


According to the Texas Secretary of State's website, almost 75% of the Texas voting age population is registered to vote...but most of the Texans who are registered don't make it to the voting booth. In the 2014 gubernatorial primaries in Texas, fewer than 10% of registered Republicans bothered to vote, and just over 4% of Democrates cast ballots.

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EngageFaith in Democracy
Event Date: 
Friday, August 28, 2015 -
11:00am to 12:00pm

Friday August 28 at 11:00, Texas Impact will host the monthly Community Partner Recruitment Initiative (CPRI) Faith-based call.

This month, Executive Director Bee Moorhead will join the call to talk about voting in Texas. Bee will focus on agency and community resources related to voting.

Event Date: 
Wednesday, August 26, 2015 -
12:00am to 2:00am

Texas Impact is coming to Austin to talk about programs to help strengthen our community!

Time: Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Place: Huston-Tillotson University. 900 Chicon St, Austin, TX 78702

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