This week, ballots are being mailed out to Californians across the state for the November 3 general election. You should receive your ballot by no later than next Tuesday.

CAA is pleased to bring you our Ballot Guide. Our staff developed this guide with recommendations for both statewide and local San Francisco measures. The measures we’re supporting resonate with our civil rights values. We carefully considered the impact of each proposition on our community members, especially those who are the most vulnerable, such as working class, immigrant families.

In particular, we’ve been leading the fight to pass Prop 16, which will give everyone — including Asian Americans — an equal shot at fair wages, good jobs, and quality schools. Yes on Prop 16!

Below the recommendations, you’ll find helpful tips about voting, including where to go for early voting in San Francisco. You can also find the Ballot Guide below as well as a handy downloadable PDF.

Make a plan to vote now!

Yes On Prop 16

Californians believe in giving everyone an equal shot at fair wages, good jobs, and quality schools. But race and gender inequities still persist, and California is one of only nine states that bans affirmative action as a tool to fight discrimination.

Proposition 16 repeals that ban and expands opportunity for millions of women, students, and people of color in public contracting, employment, and education. At CAA, we’ve led the fight to pass Prop 16 because it is absolutely fundamental to our mission of defending the rights of Chinese Americans and advancing a multiracial democracy.

And Prop 16 will make a difference now to Asian-owned small businesses working to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, to Asian Americans facing workplace discrimination and ceilings, and to Asian Americans demanding education equity in our K-12 schools and public colleges and universities.

How to Vote in California

REGISTER TO VOTE. Register to vote by October 19th. Even if you’ve already registered, it’s good to double check that your registration is correct. Register to vote or check your voter registration.

VOTE BY MAIL. Registered voters in California will automatically receive their ballots in the mail. Ballots will be mailed out on October 5. Return your ballots on or before November 3rd. (We recommend before!)

VOTE IN PERSON. If you want to vote in person, you don’t have to wait until November 3rd. Vote early to beat the lines and maintain social distancing.

Early voting in San Francisco begins on October 5 at the Voting Center, which will be outside of Bill Graham Civic Auditorium at 99 Grove Street. It will be open on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on some weekends. Check here for the dates and hours.

You can also vote on Election Day, November 3, at your local polling location. Find your polling place here.

Voting Tips

MAKE SURE TO SIGN YOUR BALLOT. After filling out your ballot clearly, seal and sign the return envelope. Election officials check the envelope signature against the signature on your voter registration card to make sure that they match. Don’t rush your signature or make it look different. If your signatures don’t match, your ballot could get thrown out!

VOTE EARLY. Due to the pandemic, mail could be delayed and there could be long lines at polling locations. It’s important to submit your ballots early! Mail your ballot early or vote early at the Voting Center at 99 Grove Street. You can also fill out your ballot at home and drop it off early at the Voting Center or at a secure ballot drop box. (See below in the FAQ)

LANGUAGE ACCESS. California offers assistance for voters in many languages. 

(800) 345-VOTE (8683) – English
(800) 339-2857 – 中文 / Chinese
(866) 575-1558 – 한국어 / Korean
(800) 339-8163 – Việt ngữ / Vietnamese

For more languages, see here.

Frequently Asked Questions

When will I receive my ballot?

If your ballot does not arrive by October 13, contact the San Francisco Department of Elections (for San Francisco residents). 

Do I need to put postage on my mail-in ballot?

No. In California, you can just put your ballot in the mailbox. 

Can I drop off my ballot in person?

Yes! In San Francisco, you can drop off your ballot at the Voting Center (99 Grove Street), at a polling place, or at a secure ballot drop box. (Please check here under “Returning your Ballot” for ballot box locations and hours.) You must turn in your ballot by no later than 8 p.m. on Election Day.

What if I miss the voter registration deadline?

You can still vote! If you miss the October 19 deadline, you can still register in-person at a polling place through Election Day, November 3!

What if I’m not 18 yet, but will be on election date?

You can pre-register to vote in California.

Helpful Websites

Vote Safe California – California Voter Registration & Information (also in Chinese) 
Ways to Vote – San Francisco Department of Elections (also in Chinese) 
San Francisco Voting Center – San Francisco Department of Elections (also in Chinese)
California Ballot Tracker – Track your ballot to see when it’s been mailed, received, and counted