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5 Reasons Why You Should Vote!

The 2024 presidential election is only a few months away. This contest represents a rematch between President Joe Biden (Democrat) and former President Donald Trump (Republican). In 2020, a record 155 million Americans cast their vote, forever altering the course of our nation. 

Four years later, this election has tremendous stakes for Americans of all walks of life. Your vote will help decide the future of health care, immigration reform, economic policy, women’s health, social programs, foreign aid, and so much more

In California, the primary election was moved from June to March. Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill to move California's primary elections to the beginning of March in 2020, three months ahead of when they were held in 2016. It was a move designed to increase the influence of the country's most populous state in deciding presidential candidates.

It's disappointing to hear about the low voter turnout in the primary election, but it's heartening that there's still a chance for people to participate in the democratic process during the general election. Every vote counts, and it's important for people to exercise their right to vote and have their voices heard on the issues that matter to them. 

Californians, in particular, will fill 52 seats in the House of Representatives and elect a new Senator to replace long-serving Democrat Diane Feinstein. There will also be races at the county and city level that will have a major impact on local funding and community development. Beyond politicians, California will vote on 10 ballot measures including an increase in health care funding and access, affordable housing, and marriage equality. 

Elections will be held on Tuesday, November 5. Remember, mail-in ballots are available for those who can’t participate in-person. Additionally, Vote Centers will be operational from Saturday, October 26, through Tuesday, November 5. AltaMed is set to once again facilitate multiple vote centers across Los Angeles and Orange counties, providing voters the opportunity to cast their ballots in person or conveniently drop them off. Since 2020, AltaMed has served as the host for 66 vote centers, witnessing a total of 1,741 votes cast and 5,678 ballots deposited in our ballot drop box.

Here are five reasons why you should vote in every election. 

Supreme Court Building

1. Elections have consequences. Every vote matters.

You have the power to make key decisions on the quality of life you want for yourself, your family, and your community. Voting is your chance to stand up for the issues you care about like affordable housing, women’s health, economic justice, environmental protection, and quality education. While Presidential or other national elections draw significant attention, midterm and local elections typically see less voter turnout. A Portland State University study found that fewer than 15% of eligible voters were turning out to vote for Mayors, Council Members, and other local offices.

Low turnout means that important local issues are determined by a limited group of voters, making a single vote even more statistically meaningful. While certain propositions may be popular, and therefore seem like a sure thing, they can fail if people stay home.

Protestant with Megaphone

2. It’s your right. Not voting is giving up your voice.

Today, most American citizens over the age of 18 are entitled to vote in federal and state elections, but voting was not always a right for all Americans. Every vote cast is a testament to the struggles of those who came before us, a tribute to their sacrifices, and a pledge to uphold the principles of democracy.

Because the Constitution did not specifically say who could vote, this question was largely left to the states in the 1800s. While no longer explicitly excluded, voter suppression is a problem in many parts of the country.

It was not until the 15th Amendment was passed in 1869 that black men were allowed to vote. But even so, many would-be voters faced measures meant to discourage them from exercising that right. This would continue until the 24th Amendment in 1964, which eliminated the poll tax, and the Voting Rights Act of 1965, which ended Jim Crow laws. Women were denied the right to vote until 1920, when the long efforts of the women’s suffrage movement finally resulted in the 19th Amendment. Later, in 1971, the American voting age was lowered to 18, building on the idea that if a person was old enough to serve their country in the military, they should be allowed to vote.

Even today, the battle for voting rights rages on. Voter suppression tactics, disenfranchisement, and gerrymandering threaten to undermine the very foundation of democracy. From stringent voter ID laws to purges of voter rolls, attempts to restrict access to the ballot persist, disproportionately impacting communities of color, low-income individuals, and marginalized groups.

Voting is the voice of the people, the mechanism through which we express our hopes, dreams, and aspirations for a better future. It is the great equalizer, where every individual, regardless of background or status, possesses the same weight in shaping the course of our country. 

Use your right. Exert your power.

Individual Income Tax Return

3. It's your money.

One way or the other, every person in our community pays taxes – both citizens and non-citizens. And yet, most people don’t know how that money is being used. Voting is your chance to choose how your tax dollars are spent, such as additional funding for health care and social services. This happens both through your vote on specific propositions and ballot measures, as well as those we elect to leadership positions that commit to supporting key social services in our communities.

American & Pride Flags

4. Voting is an opportunity for change.

Do you want to make a positive impact in your community? Voting gives you that chance! There are many social issues affected by elections, including (but not limited to) gay marriage, immigrationreproductive rights, public education, etc. Social issues affect everyone in one way or another. Voting serves as a conduit through which we can advocate for and enact policies that address pressing social issues, championing equality, justice, and opportunity for every individual, regardless of background or circumstance.

To have a say in who gets to determine social agendas, it’s essential to vote.

Skater Girl

5. The community depends on you!

Our communities are made up of family, friends, loved ones, neighbors, and children. Some may not know how important voting is, while others cannot vote. Voting isn't just a civic duty; it's a profound responsibility to represent not only yourself but also those who cannot advocate for themselves, including loved ones who depend on your voice.

Make sure your voice is heard – your vote is your health. Vote!


Call to Action: Being the change you want to see.

Help make a difference in your community during this general election and join us in the My Vote. My Health.™ initiative. By visiting our website, you can check your registration status, voting locations, and download other resources to help get out the vote in your community.

If you do not qualify to vote, you can still get involved by volunteering, speaking out about issues that matter to you, and encouraging others to vote. Everyone's voice counts, and there are plenty of ways to make a difference even if you can't cast a ballot.

If you are not yet 18, or are not a United States citizen, you can still participate in the following ways:

  • If you are at least 16 years of age you can pre-register to vote in the state of California.
  • Get informed. Read up on issues (both local and national) and figure out where you stand. Our partners at the League of Women Voters and California Plus Health Advocates both offer helpful information about what to expect on this year’s ballot.
  • Get out and talk to people. Even if you cannot vote, you can still voice opinions in public forums. When people engage each other about the issues, we stand to become better-informed citizens.
  • Volunteer. You can work with outreach campaigns by volunteering to get out the vote in your community through phone banks, door-to-door outreach, and texting. To volunteer at AltaMed, click here.
  • Stay in touch. You can follow our efforts via Facebook and Instagram or text JOIN to 33339.

In 2024, AltaMed Health Services proudly announces the expansion of its Integrated Civic Engagement Model (ICEM) and the My Vote. My Health.® (MVMH) Campaign! In partnership with the California Primary Care Association (CPCA) and with generous support from The California Endowment (TCE), we've broadened our impact to 11 community health centers, 9 community-based organizations, and 6 regional consortiums. If you are a Community Health Center or care provider and would like to join, visit for tools you can use to get out the vote amongst your patients and communities.

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5 Reasons Why You Should Vote!