Dating and voting don’t always go together but when they do, the results can be powerful. At least that’s the premise for the in-app election center offered by the dating app BLK, which connects young, Black singles.
The in-app Election Center was added on Tuesday, Sept. 20 on National Voter Registration Day, in conjunction with Michelle Obama’s When We All Vote initiative. The idea is that if you put information about voting in a space where people are already interacting, it will make it much easier for them to find the tools and resources they need to actually do so.
“Democracy can often feel out of reach and out of touch, but we know it doesn’t have to be that way. With BLK’s new Election Center, we are bringing the fight for our democracy and real change in our communities to Black voters in a way that is empowering and engaging,” Stephanie L. Young, executive director of When We All Vote said in a press release. “Together, we will change the culture around voting and ensure our communities’ voices are heard in the midterm elections and beyond.”
Via a survey, When We All Vote found that while 80 percent of BLK users are registered to vote, 66 percent of its Gen Z population don’t know the date of the midterm elections. (It’s Tuesday, Nov. 8). As 42 percent of those who weren’t already registered said they would do so before the election, BLK makes it easy, providing a link to register to vote by choosing the app’s ‘Shift the Culture’ option. Push notifications can alert users to important dates during the election cycle, including the day to go out and vote.
Users can also choose the ‘Share Your Voice’ option which allows them to add policy issues to their profile such as “gun violence” “affordable housing” and “universal healthcare,” among others, to see if they match with a like-minded single. A “When We All Vote” sticker will also be added to their profile.
The survey did find that although politically active singles are motivated to vote, their dating choices aren’t impacted by those who aren’t so civic-minded. Seventy percent of users say they would still date someone who intentionally doesn’t vote. But BLK users did share some deal-breakers – 38 percent wouldn’t date a Trump supporter, 34 percent wouldn’t date anyone who identifies as pro-life and 10% wouldn’t date anyone who is anti-LGBT+ or anti-universal healthcare.
The BLK app was founded in 2017 to provide a space for Black singles to come together. Now they say they are the leading Black dating website with over 8 million downloads since its inception. In 2018, Michelle Obama founded When We All Vote to encourage bipartisan voting. Among the celebrity co-chairs supporting her effort are Stephen Curry, H.E.R., Liza Koshy, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Janelle Monae, Chris Paul, Shonda Rhimes, and Kerry Washington.