Young people turn out in larger numbers in Florida

Peer-to-peer organizing reached hundreds of thousands in days leading up to Nov. 3

Press Release

-For Immediate Release-

For More Information:
Manny Rin, Student PIRGs New Voters Project Director, 925-234-1457, [email protected]

Orlando, Florida —
Preliminary reports from the Florida country registrars’ websites show an increase in voter turnout rate in student-heavy precincts. Florida PIRGs’ New Voters Project, one of the country’s oldest and largest youth-led voter mobilization efforts, ran massive get-out-the-vote volunteer actions in the final weeks leading up to the election. The project helped thousands of new student voters in the following counties to make plans to cast their ballots. 

  • Orange County: Turn-out rate of registered voters increased from 95% in 2016 to 103% in 2020
  • Leon County: Turn-out rate of registered voters increased increase from 69% in 2016 to 81% in 2020

In Orange County, the New Voters Project organized a diverse group of University of Central Florida student groups to help students register to vote. The project partnered with UCF Greeks Vote, UCF College Democrats, UCF College Republicans and student government to make virtual club announcements and help reach hundreds of students to help them register to vote. In the days leading up to Election Day, the group called more than 7,000 and texted 8,000 voters to turn out to vote. 

A group of 30 PIRG student leaders in Leon County from Florida State University organized a vote coalition effort, which included student government and the Center for Leadership and Social Change to reach every student on campus. Together, the coalition created a website (vote.fsu.edu), which was designed to be the one-stop shop for all the election information students need. In the days leading up to Election Day, the group called more than 4,500 and texted 5,900 voters to turn out to vote. 

In total, the group reached nearly 200,000 young voters across Florida in the weeks before Nov. 3. A total of 250 student volunteers focused on personalized peer-to-peer methods in order to help new voters participate in the election. “My generation is the largest and most diverse group of voters in the country with our own values, ideas and issues that we care about.” said Niamh Harrop, Student, University of Central Florida; “These results show that we are willing to vote to create a future that works for us.”

 

The Student PIRGs voter registration and turnout effort is part of its New Voters Project campaign, one of the largest nonpartisan youth voter mobilization efforts in the country. The Student PIRGs’ New Voters Project has run peer-to-peer student voter mobilization drives to turn out the youth vote on college campuses for more than 30 years. Its philosophy is that the full participation of young people in the political process is essential to a truly representative, vibrant democracy. The New Voters Project does not endorse, either explicitly or implicitly, a political candidate or political party for elected office.

The Student PIRGs is a network of student run and student funded organizations that work with professional staff at colleges and universities to make sure our peers have the skills, opportunities and training they need to create a better, more sustainable future for all of us. Our chapters on 35 campuses provide the training, professional support and resources students need to tackle climate change, protect public health, revitalize our democracy, feed the hungry and more. For over 40 years we’ve helped students to get organized, mobilized and energized so they can continue to be on the cutting edge of positive change.