Locals are passionate about impacting their community in Baldwinsville, and one in particular believes that starts with elections.Cameron Ezeir

Northern Suburbs

Local Residents Come to the Polls to Impact the Community

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CAMERON EZEIR: Just last year, Baldwinsville residents were flooding the Lysander Justice Court to vote on the presidency. This election day, the names on the ballots are different, but as Syracuse native Sharon Rayford says, voting is just as integral.

SHARON RAYFORD: People should have a voice in their government, even if it doesn’t work well, or your choice isn’t taken, it’s still important to put your choice down, to be influential if you can.

CAMERON EZEIR: Rayford has voted for nearly 50 years and believes it’s on the next generation to realize that voting is more than a ballot, it’s an opportunity.

SHARON RAYFORD: As a teacher, certainly I would encourage the kids. We made choices in school and it was important for them to know that yes, go out and make yourself heard.

CAMERON EZEIR: And although the importance of voting is widely talked about in all areas, there’s one aspect that doesn’t often dominate the conversation – that’s local elections like the one happening today, and how it has a huge impact on Onondaga County.

SHARON RAYFORD: Local is where the grass roots are and it comes up from there. To affect the national level is harder, it’s harder to sort through the news and the truth. The local is where I leave, it’s where I function.

CAMERON EZEIR: As Central New Yorkers leave the polls, the numbers aren’t close to the 300,000 that registered to vote last year, but it’s a small step in directly impacting their community.

SHARON RAYFORD: I’m a citizen of this country, of this state, of this community. I want to be a part of it.

CAMERON EZEIR: Reporting from Baldwinsville, for Democracy in Action, Cameron Ezeir, NCC News.

BALDWINSVILLE, N.Y. (DiA) – In last year’s presidential election, Central New York gathered over 300,000 registered voters, but with local elections on tap today, those numbers are expected to dip drastically. It’s to be expected with the lower magnitude of the positions, but many are still passionate about directly impacting their community in this year’s election.

Sharon Rayford, 76, has lived in Syracuse her entire life and stresses the importance of the community making decisions that hit close to home.

Local [elections] is where the grass roots are and it comes up from there. To affect the national level is harder, it’s harder to sort through the news and the truth,” Rayford said. “The local is where I live, it’s where I function.”

Local elections saw 3% of all registered voters from a year ago apply to vote early, with an expected steep increase including in person votes. Rayford is part of that in-person crowd and has done so for the last 50 years, a stretch she attributes to the freedom she holds.

“I’m a citizen of this country, of this state, of this community,” Rayford said. “I want to be a part of it.”

She believes everyone should take part in elections, which will ultimately have a trickle down effect into new generations. As a former teacher, she stands by encouraging kids to vote in the future and get their voice heard.

People should have a voice in their government. Even if it doesn’t work well, or your choice isn’t taken, it’s still important to put your choice down, to be influential if you can,” Rayford said.

Rayford wants to implore change to her community and feels that voting is the best way to do so, or at least the most influential way to impact the city she grew up in with the opportunity she’s given.

 

 

 

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