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MY STORY: I’m a first time #EqualityVoter

With the polls opening in less than 14 hours, I’d like to take the time to share my personal story.
I never believed in voting. Having to pick a party, pick “a side”, and conform to certain values never felt right to me.  For a long time, that wasn’t who I was and that was the end of it as far as I was concerned. I didn’t take the time to do research or consider the impact elections make, not only on my community, but on myself and the people I loved.

I sit here writing this, however, as a registered voter, so let’s discuss the change of heart. For me personally it all happened when I saw how the people I loved most and the things I most strongly believed in were shoved aside, ignored, and dismissed.  Equality and opportunity for LGBTQ people, women, and small businesses have always been on the top of my list of things I cared deeply about.

When I started paying close attention over the past year, I watched as the issues and people I cared about were not fairly represented. I watched elected officials – representatives that other people voted into office propose laws that would take away and restrict the rights of the most vulnerable and underserved.  

I listened a lot as people re-lived over and over the presidential election but paid little or no attention to this critically important Pennsylvania Primary Election that is happening in less than 24 hours.

Seeking information on how to do more came down to two things:  (1) Speaking up and being heard, and  (2) Voting for people who could speak out and be heard on a larger scale… and fight against those who seek to take away fairness and equality.

So I registered to vote and will cast a ballot in my first election tomorrow, and I’ll do it as an #EqualityVoter.  Please join me and make a plan to vote tomorrow, and please consider our endorsed candidates.

See you at the polls!

~Elle

Elle Hammond is the Operations Manager at Equality Pennsylvania, the Commonwealth’s Statewide LGBTQ Advocacy Organization.  She and her brother Chris co-founded of The Game Chateau Board Game Cafe in Wilkes-Barre.  Elle lives in Kingston, PA with her husband Zack and their adorable cats Otis, Aldous, Lana, and Pugsley.

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