Your vote is your voice: Make sure you’re heard

Are you ready to vote in the upcoming election? Whether it’s your first time voting or you just want more information on how to cast your ballot safely this November, join the PBA’s Law Related Education Committee for a quick webinar that will provide all the information you need to make sure you’re registered and prepared to vote – whether by mail, absentee ballot or at the polls. Voting is your voice and your vote affects major decisions that our government will make about your life. You get to choose the candidates who will best represent your interests on important issues, but only if you vote. Make sure you’re heard. Your vote and your voice matter.

Our esteemed panel is prepared to answer all of your “how-to” questions.

Watch the video replay of our Oct. 1 program.

Listen to a message on voting in Pennsylvania from Secretary of the Commonwealth, Kathy Boockvar

Topics covered in the webinar:

  • People have fought and sacrificed to get the right to vote.
  • Who can vote?
  • Are some people still being denied the right to vote?
  • What barriers and obstacles do voters face in today’s America?
  • How do I register?
  • Can I vote in person or by mail?
  • How do I find my polling location?
  • What do I need to take with me to vote? Do I need an ID?
  • How can I learn about the candidates?
  • What objective resources are there to help me learn about candidates?

Featured Speakers:

  • Jessie Allen, J.S.D.
    Associate Professor of Law
    University of Pittsburgh School of Law
    Professor Allen’s bio
  • Kathy Boockvar, J.D.
    Secretary of the Commonwealth, Pennsylvania Department of State
    Secretary Boockvar’s bio
  • Diana M. Collins, Esq.
    Chair, PBA Law-Related Education Committee
  • Susan Poulson, Ph. D.
    Professor of History, University of Scranton
    Dr. Poulson’s bio
  • David E. Schwager, Esq.
    President, Pennsylvania Bar Association
  • Molly E. Zarefoss, Esq.
    Staff Attorney, Office of Chief Legal Counsel
    Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania

Program Moderator:

Philip Yoon, Esq.
Chief Staff Attorney, Superior Court of Pennsylvania

 Important Dates for Voting in Pennsylvania


Deadline Alert: Oct. 19, 2020, is the last day to register before the Nov. 3, 2020, election.

If you are not a U.S. citizen and a resident of Pennsylvania at least 30 days before the next election, you CANNOT register to vote.

Check your registration status.

Apply for a mail-in or absentee ballot.

Deadline Alert: If you plan to vote by mail-in ballot in the 2020 GENERAL ELECTION, your completed application must be received in the county office by 5:00 p.m. on Oct. 27, 2020. Your voted ballot must be received in your county election office by 8:00 p.m. on Nov. 3, 2020. A late application or ballot will not be accepted, even if it was postmarked before the deadline.

If you have any questions, please call 1-877-VOTESPA (1-877-868-3772).

Resources for Voters

  • Ballotpedia Be an informed voter. This site helps you research the offices and candidates that will appear on your ballot in the upcoming election.
  • Directory of Pennsylvania elections Pennsylvania candidates for governor, state representatives and Congress (senators/House of Representatives). Pa. primary and election races. Voting information. Political parties. State election office.
  • Find your Polling Location
  • First Time Voters If you are voting in Pennsylvania for the first time or if you are voting at a new polling place, learn how to get ready to go to the polling place on Election Day.
  • Five Recommendations for Pa. Voters: The Pennsylvania Department of State has an guide offering simple steps to make the voting experience smooth and successful. 
  • Mikva Challenge In the 2020 election, youth voice and action are essential. At Mikva Challenge, we know young people have the power to play a critical role in educating and activating each other and their communities to participate and make their voices heard in the 2020 election. Regardless of whether they can vote themselves, young people can speak out on issues that matter to them, advocate for candidates they support, educate their communities about candidates and processes, and mobilize them to vote.
  • Online Voter Registration Application – deadline to register for the Nov. 3, 2020 election is Oct. 19.
  • Rock the Vote Voter registration information, as well as resources about “how to vote,” and interviews with people about voting.
  • The Philadelphia Inquirer has developed an easy-to-use-online guide about voting in Pennsylvania - Everything you need to know about voting by mail, or in person, in Pennsylvania
  • The Right to Vote is a short video produced by Public Square Media in partnership with the American Bar Association. While we think of voting as the principle inalienable right of our democracy, the fight to cast a ballot is as old as the nation itself, and by no means a guarantee for many Americans. As America prepares to celebrate the centennial of the ratification of the 19th Amendment giving women the right to vote in 1920, this short film reports on the ongoing struggle for some Americans to exercise their voting right.
  • Voice of America Provides the latest news about the 2020 election, campaigns, and candidates. There are educational videos about voting matters, and the 2020 election. Very accessible for a new voter, or voters whose first language may not be English.
  • Vote! The Podcast Answers to your voting questions. Vote! is for anyone who has ever felt powerless, overwhelmed, under-resourced, or just plain lost when it comes to voting -- aka pretty much all of us!
  • Vote 411 Learn where candidates running for office in your community stand on the issues. You can print or email the information to use as a reference when you actually vote.
  • VotesPA the official Pennsylvania Government website on voting and elections

Facebook Resources

PA Department of State

2020 US Election Voting Information Center

Vote 411

Resources for Teachers

Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE) Data on youth voting and civic engagement and more. The site to visit if one wants to learn more about trends.

iCivics has lots of easy-to-use resources, lesson plans and educational games for remote learning, including the nonpartisan “Election Headquarters” webpage.

The Ohio Center for Law-Related Education has developed a Teaching Toolbox with numerous civic education resources to help provide great online learning experiences.

Resources on Voting and Elections from the National Constitution Center

Voting Rights

Interactive Constitution

Electoral College

Elections and Parties



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