WHEREAS, the right to vote is an important civil liberty and the core of the American political system; and
WHEREAS, voter registration for high school students who are 18, or will turn 18 before an election, should be accessible and convenient; and
WHEREAS, educators play a critical role in the development of their students as productive, active citizens, and participation in the electoral process is one of the earliest introductions students can have to becoming informed and engaged citizens; and
WHEREAS, Virginia Secretaries of Administration and Education have worked with the Department of Elections and the Department of Education, as well as other interested parties, to conduct voter registration outreach to high school students across the Commonwealth; and
WHEREAS, April 21-27, 2019, will be the fourth-annual Virginia High School Student Registration Week, in which teachers and students will be encouraged to hold registration drives at their schools, and to participate in the Governor’s Voter Registration Challenge, to make voter registration accessible and convenient for eligible high school students throughout the Commonwealth; and
WHEREAS, Virginians can apply to register to vote by submitting paper applications by mail to their local general registrar; in person at their local general registrar’s office; at the Department of Motor Vehicles; completing the online form on the Department of Elections’ website; completing the online form using a school-specific voter registration link; or at a voter registration drive; and
WHEREAS, voting is a vital part of our democracy and ensures that everyone’s voice is heard;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize April 21-27, 2019, as VIRGINIA HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT VOTER REGISTRATION WEEK in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.