Local union holds rally for early voting, focuses on Asian American and Pacific Islander community

Local News

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — We are less than two weeks away from the general election, and many groups are working to get as many people to the polls as possible.

The “Service Employees International Union Local 1107” held a rally Saturday. They’re encouraging everyone to vote, specifically focusing on the Asian American and Pacific Islander community.

More than 30 members of the Service Employees International Union Local 1107 gathered on South Maryland Parkway, to promote early voting — some of them doing it for the first time. 

Cindy Delos Santos and her husband became U.S. citizens this year, and she says she is proud to vote and get involved. 

“I’m a first time voter and I’m dropping this,” Delos Santos said. “We’ve been canvassing, phone banking, voter registration.”

Delos Santos joined local candidates and other SEIU members at Saturday’s rally, where there was election information in 7 AAPI languages.

The group kicked off the rally with some speeches highlighting the importance of early voting. They then took their signs to the streets in an effort to encourage community members to vote as well. 

“Boots on the ground, grassroots, that’s what we’re all about because we’re such a tight knit community,” said Michelle Maese, SEIU secretary/treasurer. “Having one person go out, and then inviting another person and another person, I mean that’s how you get the votes done.”

Many SEIU members are workers employed at local hospitals and in Clark County. Union officials say most have been on the frontlines of the pandemic and are now on the frontlines of the election. 

“We believe in our union that an injury to one is an injury to all,” said SEIU president Kevin Carey. “So we want to make sure everybody is heard, everybody gets their voice out, and everybody votes.”

Saturday’s rally was part of a nationwide effort to highlight early voting, which spanned across 50 cities.

Pew Research Center says more than 11 million Asian Americans will be eligible to vote this year. That makes up nearly five percent of eligible voters.

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