- As Election Day draws closer, more companies are making public commitments to giving their employees time off to vote.
- More than 1,300 companies have joined the “Time to Vote” movement, which aims to increase voter turnout by giving workers flexibility to cast their ballots.
- Here are the retailers and consumer companies that have signed the pledge and shared details about their plans.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The US has one of the lowest voter turnout rates among developed countries. According to the Pew Research Centre, 56% of those who were eligible to vote cast their ballots in the 2016 presidential election.
Though there may be a number of reasons for citizens not voting, a growing number of companies are joining a movement that’s aiming to ensure that work schedules and demands are not among them come November 3.
Through the “Time to Vote” campaign, a nonpartisan movement begun by Patagonia, Levi Strauss, and PayPal, more companies are making public commitments to giving their employees time to vote.
More than 1,300 companies have joined the movement so far.
Here are the retailers and consumer companies that have added their name to the list and shared specific plans about how they’re empowering their employees to vote:
Patagonia has said it will close its stores, offices, and distribution centres for Election Day, as it did in 2016 and 2018.
Source: The New York Times
Levi Strauss is offering five hours of paid time off for all employees to vote on Election Day. It’s also offering five hours of paid time off each month for workers to volunteer for voter engagement efforts.
Source: Time to Vote
J. Crew announced it would also join in supporting “Time to Vote,” closing all J. Crew and Madewell stores, offices, and distribution and customer service centres for the whole of Election Day.
Source: J. Crew
Walmart store associates get three paid hours for voting if the timing of their shifts don’t otherwise allow for it. They have to provide a day’s notice to their supervisor, a company spokesperson told CNBC.
Apple is giving retail and hourly employees up to four hours off with pay, Bloomberg reported in July.
Best Buy said it would shorten its operating hours on Election Day. This includes stores, corporate offices, field offices, and in-home installation services. It said it would also make arrangements for distribution centre and customer service employees.
Source: Best Buy
Nike’s Election Day policies vary across the country, depending on the state’s voting laws. Offerings could include paid time off, a meeting-free day, or resources about mail-in ballots.
Hourly workers at Sweetgreen will get up to three hours of paid time off for Election Day or for voting early. The salad chain is also sharing resources to educate employees about the voting process, and it created a custom registration site.
All US employees of The North Face and its parent company, VF Corporation, will get up to three hours of paid time off to vote. For corporate employees, Election Day is being designated an “Explore Day,” which North Face uses to give workers time to live out the brand’s values. Retail employees are also being offered staggered half-days off.
Source: The North Face
Gap Inc. will be giving all workers at its portfolio of brands — Gap, Old Navy, Banana Republic, Athleta, Intermix, and Janie and Jack — up to three hours of paid time off if their schedules do not allow for voting. At headquarters, workers will be encouraged to have a meeting-free Election Day.
Everlane is giving all of its employees paid time off for Election Day. It’s also partnering with the ACLU to provide its workforce with resources about mail-in voting.
Ben & Jerry’s is making Election Day an official day off for workers at headquarters and at its two manufacturing facilities in Vermont.
Source: Ben & Jerry’s
The Coca-Cola Company has made Election Day a paid holiday for all US employees. The company has also curated resources around voting deadlines and guidelines and created nonpartisan volunteer opportunities for workers in the lead-up to Election Day.
Source: Time to Vote
Women’s clothing brand Reformation is giving four hours of paid time off to employees who can’t vote during their non-work hours.
Though not officially part of the Time to Vote coalition, Starbucks said on August 27 that it would give all employees “the tools and the time necessary to register” and vote, as part of its new Fuel Our Democracy initiative. Starbucks also created a portal with resources for employees to learn more about the process and the issues at hand.
Vineyard Vines announced on September 15 that it would be joining Time to Vote and giving its employees three hours of paid time off to vote if their work schedules did not allow for it. It also plans to reduce hours of operation in stores and corporate offices.
Source: Vineyard Vines
Away also announced on September 15 that it would close its 10 US stores and designate Election Day as a full day of paid time off for both corporate and retail workers.
The Body Shop said on September 30 it would close its stores, distribution centre, and offices and give its employees a paid day off to vote.
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