Naperville League of Women Voters focuses on young adults on national registration day
The first Tuesday after the first Monday in November every other year is Election Day, but the fourth Tuesday of September every year since 2012 has been something else: National Voter Registration Day.
The League of Women Voters of Naperville was among thousands of groups across the country that participated in this year's effort to register as many people as possible to vote in advance of the 2020 election.
Setting up booths at Metea, Neuqua and Waubonsie Valley high schools in Indian Prairie Unit District 204, as well as North Central College and the College of DuPage Naperville Center, league members gave students the chance to become newly registered voters.
"It's really encouraging, especially to have young people registered," said Shirley DeCorte, director of voter service for the Naperville league. "One of the things we found in Naperville is that most people are already registered, except for those young people."
Many of the league's 30 certified voter registrants helped out at one school or another, and the league has separate plans to host registration days at Naperville Central and North high schools, too.
The purpose of the national registration day, organizers say, is "helping people find their voice -- not telling them what to say." That fits in well with the League of Women Voters' tradition of nonpartisan outreach, DeCorte said.
"With 2020 coming up, we're really wanting to have everyone register and be prepared," she said.
People must register 28 days in advance to vote in an election. Registration is available online at https://ova.elections.il.gov or in person at DuPage County libraries and township or municipal facilities listed at www.dupageco.org/Election/Voting/37044/.
The state also allows grace period voting for people who move shortly before an election or did not register 28 days in advance. To register for grace period voting, visit the DuPage County Election Division office at 421 N. County Farm Road beginning 27 days prior to any election. Two forms of identification indicating name and address are needed to register.
Last year, 865,015 people registered to vote on National Voter Registration Day with the help of 4,087 organizations and 22,641 volunteers. Organizers aim to top those totals this year in advance of what's expected to be a large turnout in the 2020 general election.