PHOENIX, Ariz. — The Phoenix Indian Center (PIC) announced today their Arizona participation in the first-ever national Urban American Indian voter engagement campaign through funding provided by the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation and distributed by the National Urban Indian Families Coalition (NUIFC). This initiative is aimed at increasing voter registration, engagement and increased turn out at the polls. The Phoenix Indian Center, a local nonprofit, has done this work previously and is one of 17 metropolitan-based American Indian organizations chosen to receive funding because of their effectiveness in serving and advocating for Native communities, in fact they have a 71-year old history of service to the community.
“This announcement comes on the eve of National Voter Registration Day and that couldn’t have happened at a more fortuitous time,” Patricia Hibbeler, Chief Executive Officer of the Phoenix Indian Center said. “We have partnered with several organizations across the state to activate our respective base of volunteers, advancing democracy to the highest to engage active citizenship, focusing on a commitment to a strong society. Collectively, we have an unparalleled reach to increase voter engagement at all levels.”
In conjunction with National Voter Registration Day, Hibbeler is taking to social media and asking American Indian voters to take the pledge to vote. On-site voter registration will occur at several key sites throughout the Maricopa valley including the Phoenix Indian Medical Center, Arizona State University at Discovery Hall, Mesa Community College, Scottsdale Community College, Native Health and Native American Connections – which also shares co-owned, owner operated commercial space with the Phoenix Indian Center.
The nationwide initiative is a nonpartisan effort designed to build capacity, develop a network of organizations across the country and engage American Indians and Alaska Natives as advocates for policies and issues that are important to Indian Country through voter engagement.
“Our phase one goal is to get as many people registered to vote before the October 9th deadline,” Hibbeler said. “The second phase will focus on voter education and getting people to the polls. Yes, we are ready to roll up our sleeves and get to work.”