Tisch College houses two major national research groups on youth civic and political participation. One of those, the Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE) focuses explicitly on supporting participation by young people of color and other youth from historically marginalized communities, and has recently focused on exploring how young people are leading current movements for social change and how to make sure they are ready to vote this November despite the pandemic.
In a new, exclusive poll, CIRCLE found that 83% of young people (ages 18-29) say they believe their generation has the power to change the country and 79% say that COVID-19 has helped them realize how much political leaders’ decisions shape their lives. Youth are participating in protests, donating to campaigns, volunteering, and registering their peers to vote more than in previous years. At the same time, only half of youth correctly identified whether their state has online registration and just 25% have voted by mail before. The poll also finds that young people—especially youth of color—have been battered by the pandemic: 48% of Black youth who aren’t in school have been unemployed during the pandemic.
CIRCLE recently shared some of its findings in two webinars, one from Tisch College which also featured J. Cottle of MassVOTE and one with Gallup, featuring Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley, which you can access here (registration required).