New Organization On A Mission to Increase Voter Turn-Out in Local Elections

The R.I.S.E. Coalition is partnering with the League of Women Voters to launch the #VoteLocal Campaign.

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The R.I.S.E. Coalition was founded less than a year ago but is already taking strategic action to make a difference in Rutherford County. On Wednesday, April 9th it will host its third community outreach event. The “You Get What You Vote For” Brunch will be held at the Bradley Museum and Cultural Arts Center from 10 am-Noon. The event is free and open to the public.

The purpose of this event is to educate voters, but more importantly, to listen to voters. Voters will have an opportunity to hear from local leaders like Rutherford County Election Commission Administrator Alan Farley and meet local candidates running for office in the upcoming election.

“Often we complain about things going on in our community without realizing we have the power to make an impact,” said RISE Coalition President Eric Meriwether, “the goal of this event is to remind our community that they do have a voice, and exercising their right to vote in local elections is one way to use their voice in a powerful way.”

The event will also serve as the official launch of #VoteLocal, a community outreach and awareness campaign to educate, encourage and empower voters to participate in local elections.   

“We’re focusing on increasing voter turnout because Rutherford County has a 15% voter engagement rate in local elections,” said RISE Vice-President Tee Wilson, “however, local elections have a far greater impact and influence on our day-to-day lives compared to general elections. It directly affects everything from housing to infrastructure, employment and education, and as we’ve seen recently in Rutherford, even our juvenile justice system.”

Increasing turn-out in local elections is also a goal of The League of Women Voters Murfreesboro/Rutherford County Chapter (LWV). They will be in attendance to dispel common voting myths and the MTSU Chapter of the American Association of University Women will be on hand to register voters.

The RISE Coalition has four other areas of impact as a part of its mission in addition to voter education and engagement: Workforce Development, Youth Empowerment, Equity in Education and Family Wellness which includes housing, health, community outreach and events.

“We know we are a new organization and we are still in the building phase, but we do not see that as a barrier to making a difference in our community”, said Meriwether, “voter education and engagement is just one part of our mission, we have ambitious plans, but we are up for the challenge because we know how important it is.”

Space is limited for the “You Get What You Vote For” Brunch. Register now to attend at bit.ly/rucorise.

The RISE Coalition New Members Orientation will be held on April 21st. To learn more or become a member, visit rutherfordrise.org.

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