photo by Michelle Le

Your company can increase voter turnout by celebrating democracy on Election Day.

Join the growing list of business leaders who are making Election Day a company holiday.

Add your company

Your company's holiday policy can make the difference.

What does it mean to add your company to the list?

It means you’re committed to giving your employees dedicated time to vote on Election Day, as a full day, half day, flex day, or no-meetings day, and encouraging them to take it.

It means your employees can celebrate their power to vote without using personal days or sick days- because it shouldn't cost money to vote.

It means your company has decided to update your annual holiday calendar to include Election Day.

It means you're ready to party down for democracy on the first Tuesday, after the first Monday in November.

Encouraging your employees to vote is simple, inexpensive, and impactful.
Now that's something to celebrate.

Simple

With a few keyboard clicks, you can set Election Day (the first Tuesday, after the first Monday in November) to an annual holiday on your calendar. While not every year is a federal election, local and state districts, and special federal elections, often fall on the same date. For the occasional years with no elections at all, party on for inalienable rights.

Inexpensive

We have great news: you don’t need to create a new holiday. We’re big fans of simply replacing Columbus Day. If you already skip that one, Presidents’ Day is a great day to lend to patriotism. Or merge the celebration with Veteran’s Day, which is often within a week of Election Day. Floating holidays, volunteer holidays, half days or no meeting days.. plenty of options can do the trick.

Impactful

Nearly 60% of voting-eligible Americans did not vote in our last midterm elections. The number one reason people self-report not voting? It 'conflicts with work or school.' This reason has secured the top slot since the mid 90s. When you celebrate Election Day as an official, annual holiday, your business becomes a powerful vehicle for democratic participation.

photo by Michelle Le

Wait, why is Election Day on Tuesday?

Good question.

In 1845, when we rode horses and buggies, and before Florida, California, and Texas were states or slavery had been abolished, Congress needed to pick a time for Americans to vote. Americans required three days to ride to the nearest polls, two days to pray, and one day for trading at the market- which left Tuesday as the most convenient day for most Americans to vote. This is what we refer to as "irony."
 
Since then, the federal government has never attempted to pass legislation to make Election Day a holiday. Any bills that have been proposed face an estimated 0% chance of passing. Yikes.

Learn more about all this from our friends at Why Tuesday?

More people would vote if Election Day were a holiday.
That's where you come in.

* Pew Research Study on Voter Turnout by Country

Frequently asked questions

Why doesn't the government create a holiday?

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In 241 years, the federal government has never attempted to pass legislation to make Election Day a holiday. There's no federal law that governs time off to vote, and only twenty-three states require paid time off to vote. So instead of waiting for Congress to act, we're stepping up as business leaders. This is up to us.

We already give employees vacation time for Federal Holidays. Is it expensive to create a new holiday?

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We’re big fans of simply replacing Columbus Day, swapping with President's Day, or merging the celebration with Veteran’s Day (it is often within a week of Election Day). 

There are also plenty of other ways to get creative. Floating holidays, half days, volunteer hours, shortened hours, and no-meeting days will all do the trick.

Minimally, employees should get a couple of paid hours to vote so they don't have to choose between working and voting.

We already give employees unlimited vacation time. What’s the difference?

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When you celebrate Election Day as its own distinct holiday, you actively encourage your full-time employees to prioritize voting, and you can enable part-time, contract, and maintenance employees to do the same.

We're celebrating democracy and buildng a culture around it, which works best when you name Election Day an official, permanent holiday.

Why do we vote on Tuesday anyway?

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Okay, this answer will make you laugh. In 1845, when we rode horses and buggies, and before Florida, California, and Texas were states or slavery had been abolished, Congress needed to pick a time for Americans to vote. Wednesday was the day that farmers came into town to sell their goods at the market, so the government chose Tuesday, since it was the most convenient day for most Americans to vote. This is what we refer to as "irony." 

Learn more about all of this from our friends at Why Tuesday?

Election Day doesn't happen on the same date every year.  What does that mean for committing to a permanent holiday?

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Like Thanksgiving, Election Day floats (between November 2 and November 8). Luckily, your calendar system is savvy enough to handle it.

Not every year is a federal election, but the date is often used by local and state districts, or for special federal elections. And celebrating every year helps bring voting to the forefront of our culture, whether that means employee-led democracy projects, or just the chance to catch up on Veep.

We can’t give everyone the entire day off.

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Floating holidays, half days, volunteer hours, shortened hours, or no-meeting days are all creative options that can help you do the trick.

Minimally, employees should get a couple of paid hours to vote so they don't have to choose between working and voting.

Should employees need to prove that they voted?

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While more people will vote if Election Day is a holiday, some people won’t and some employees can’t. Every other year, there may not even be an election to vote in. But we're all for making a friendly competition out of democratic participation.

Our company celebrates Indigenous People's Day, not Columbus Day. How should we proceed?

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Please keep celebrating Indigenous People's day: it's the least US companies can do. 

We suggest you give employees Election Day off instead of President's Day. We think Washington and Lincoln would approve. If you get into a real pinch, consider offering floating holidays, half days, volunteer hours, shortened hours, or no-meeting days.

Minimally, employees should get a couple of paid hours to vote so they don't have to choose between working and voting.

Add your company

Prepare your employees

Here is a set of resources to share with your team.

photo by Michelle Le

Join the growing list of leaders who are making Election Day a company holiday.

Add your company