Every four years, Democrats and Republicans meet to create a party platform, a document that formalizes policy positions and serves as a statement on current events. On July 25, 2016, Democratic delegates met in Philadelphia to approve a platform that, in part, recognizes the healing power of national service. The platform called for a bold expansion of national service programs:
“We believe in the power of national service to solve problems and break down barriers by bringing people of all backgrounds together in common purpose. National service expands opportunity for people across America, strengthening our communities and our country. And those who serve earn education awards that they can use for college while building valuable work skills. We will support and strengthen AmeriCorps with the goal that every American who wants to participate in full-time national service will have the opportunity to do so.”
We are encouraged by this expression of support for national service, but also recognize that party platforms are not binding documents. We know that this represents just one step in our efforts to bolster bipartisan support for the expansion of national service programs nationwide.
Along with our partners in the national service community and at the Service Year Alliance, Voices for National Service has worked diligently to engage leaders on both sides of the political aisle to ensure continued bipartisan support for national service. We know that the vast majority of Americans want Congress to invest in national service and support candidates with national service plans.
Make sure your voice is heard today. Add your name to the growing list of leaders in the entertainment, technology, business, military, government, and nonprofit sectors, and challenge the next president to make national service a cultural expectation and common opportunity for young Americans of all backgrounds.
Read the full challenge, and view signatures here.