Voter registration drive targets young New Yorkers, naturalized citizens

The Campaign Finance Board’s effort aims to increase turnout during the 2021 elections.

The New York City Campaign Finance Board announced Tuesday the start of an effort to register more naturalized citizens and younger New Yorkers to vote ahead of the 2021 elections.

NYC Votes, a CFB unit, said only 13.5% of eligible voters between the ages of 18 and 29 participated in the last mayoral election. Turnout was also low among immigrants who were naturalized citizens, NYC Votes said.

The board said it aims to double the number of 18- to 29-year-old voters by 2021 through registration drives and emails, texts and social media posts. The CFB aspires to see 250,000 younger voters cast ballots in 2021. 

CFB also wants to usher another 20,000 naturalized citizens through the registration process by the end of 2020. To advance this goal, the board said it will work with nonprofits and community groups in neighborhoods with relatively large numbers of naturalized citizens, but low voter turnout rates, such as Bensonhurst, Brighton Beach, Elmhurst, Richmond Hill, and South Ozone Park. The partners will help CFB host information sessions and promote voter registration in various langauges. 

People tend to get more interested in voting during presidential campaigns, which is why the CFB is undertaking registration initiatives now, according to the board’s assistant executive director for public affairs, Eric Friedman. 

For more information on registering to vote, and to check your registration status, head to vote.nyc.ny.us

Ivan Pereira