Skip Navigation LinksA-Small-Act-That-Can-Make-a-Big-Difference-Why-We-Choose-to-VoteKids

+A +A +A             print           email           share



 

​​​​​   

A Small Act That Can Make a Big Difference: Why We Choose to #VoteKids

Lynda Young, MD, FAAP
Dennis Cooley, MD, FAAP
J. Gary Wheeler, MD, FAAP
July 18, 2016

With the Republican national convention beginning today in Cleveland and the Democratic national convention taking place next week in Philadelphia, the 2016 election season is officially upon us, and pediatricians are ready to play a part.

While children cannot vote or speak up for themselves, we can. We are using our voices to make sure their needs are prioritized by our elected leaders in state legislatures and governors' offices, in Congress and in the White House. 

Today, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is launching its Get Out the Vote campaign, #VoteKids, with the goal of making children a meaningful part of the election conversation and encouraging all who advocate for children to vote with their needs in mind. 


  "It will take all of our voices coming together to advocate for what children need."           
 

   

The campaign includes a portal of election resources, including voter registration information, sample social media messages and a social media banner to add to your profile photo starting today through Election Day on November 8. These resources and more are all available now on aap.org/votekids.

There is a lot at stake for children in this election. One in five children lives in poverty, one in five children lives in households where food is scarce, and seven children and teens die from gun violence every day. Our campaign urges elected leaders to invest in programs and policies that address these issues and others to keep our children, families and communities safe and healthy.

It will take all of our voices coming together to advocate for what children need. While we have a lot of work ahead of us, we have an important opportunity to make a difference between now and Election Day. 

 


  "There is a lot at stake for children in this election. One in five children lives in poverty, one in five children lives in households where food is scarce, and seven children and teens die from gun violence every day. "           


 

Here are three ways you can join the #VoteKids effort today:

  • Show your friends and followers on social media that you care about the future because you care about kids by updating your social media profile with the #VoteKids Twibbon.
  • Use sample tweets from the social media toolkit to share why you plan to #VoteKids.
  • Make sure you are registered to vote and know your state voting laws and restrictions by visiting aap.org/votekids.

In the coming months, the AAP will continue to share new campaign resources to ensure you have everything you need to #VoteKids in November and encourage others to do so too.

Children are our future and deserve to be represented. We #VoteKids because kids can't vote and we can, kids deserve a better future, and ​especially because it's the right thing to do -  we invite you to join us!  

About the Authors

 

 Lynda Young, MD, FAAP, is chair of the AAP's Committee on Federal Government Affairs and a practicing pediatrician and is the Ambulatory Physician Leader for Pediatrics at UMass Memorial Medical Center in Worcester, Massachusetts. She is a Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, past president of the Massachusetts Chapter of the AAP and past president of the Massachusetts Medical Society.


 

Dennis Cooley, MD, FAAP, chairs the AAP's Subcommittee on Access to Care. A general pediatrician who has practiced in Topeka, Kansas for more than 36 years, he is on staff at Stormont Vail Hospital and is a volunteer clinical instructor with the University of Kansas School of Medicine.  He has served three terms as president of the Kansas Chapter of the AAP and is currently the chapter’s legislative coordinator.
 

J. Gary Wheeler, MD, MPS, FAAP, is chair of the AAP's Committee on State Government Affairs. He works as the chief medical officer for the Arkansas Department of Health and as an adjunct professor of pediatrics at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences and Arkansas Children’s Hospital.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​