Salary: Canvasser: $15/hour, plus mileage reimbursement and some meals provided
Michigan United is looking for canvassers to participate in a deep canvassing civic engagement program focusing on immigration, health care, race, class, and the 2020 elections. Canvassers will be going door to door in rural and small-town areas and will attempt to help voters understand major conflicts in society in more unifying ways, specifically around blaming undocumented immigrants for societal ills and unpacking worldviews that often keep us divided and fearful. As the election cycle progresses, canvassers will work with our sister organization, Michigan People's Campaign, to talk with voters about member-endorsed candidates. This program includes a field testing component that will utilize deep canvassing to engage thousands of Michigan voters in conversations about immigration and President Trump. There will be opportunities for promotion to canvass lead or other leadership positions.
Rather than telling voters why they should support a particular issue or candidate, deep canvassing draws on personal story and dialogue to create a transformation experience for both the voter and the canvasser. Canvassers will need to demonstrate skills in active listening, creating moments of empathy, and the ability to engage in potentially difficult conversations about immigration with people who may disagree without triggering.
This position has a work week that includes Saturday mornings and afternoons, and weekday afternoons and evenings. Canvassers are expected to work 3-5 days per week. Hours and workdays may fluctuate based on weather and progress towards goals.
All canvassers are required to attend a training either from March 29 - April 1st in Las Vegas OR April 14-16th in Detroit. It is preferred that you attend the March 29th - April 1st training in Las Vegas. If you are interested in the position and unable to attend the training, please make note of this in your application.
Individuals who are interested in participating and learning the skills of deep canvassing but are unable to commit the time required for a paid position are encouraged to volunteer.
- Door-to-door canvass with targeted voters on Saturday mornings and afternoons and weekday afternoons and evenings.
- Have multiple deep canvass conversations per shift.
- Track conversations in MiniVAN [voter database].
- Debrief conversations on a daily basis with canvass team and canvass lead.
- Participate in ongoing training to learn deep canvassing tactics and scripts.
- Listen without judgement so voters feel comfortable sharing their views honestly.
- Listen actively and ask follow-up questions.
- Be willing to share your own stories to help voters feel more comfortable.
- Connect around shared values based on common experiences.
- Excellent listening and communication skills, such as the ability to ask multiple follow up questions and elicit stories. Empathetic and motivational in conversation.
- Comfortable sharing stories about your own experiences.
- Capacity to listen without judgement. Ability to find common ground with people who have different opinions.
- Experience using MiniVAN is a plus, but not required.
- Valid driver’s license, auto insurance, and a reliable vehicle.
- Ability to attend a training in Las Vegas from March 29 - April 1, expenses paid, is preferred.
- Personal connection to rural and small town areas and/or immigration preferred.
- Strong commitment to social, racial and economic justice, and passion for our issues.
- Serious about achieving qualitative and quantitative goals.
About Michigan United
Michigan United is a statewide organization of community members and institutions fighting for economic and racial justice. We use the tools of community organizing, leadership training, advocacy, media work, and civic engagement to run strategic campaigns that win real change. We're committed to winning a better world for all of our communities, not just the privileged.
We are the largest community organizing group in the state, with offices in Detroit, Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids and Flint. We represent 100 member community organizations.
Michigan United organizes along the following issue areas: immigrants’ rights, criminal justice reform, environmental justice, universal family care (including health, child care, elder care and paid sick time) and civic engagement. We work to build the capacity of community members who are directly impacted these issues to lead and win concrete reforms that will change their own lives and shift the balance of power in our state.
Michigan United, along with Michigan People’s Campaign, our affiliated 501(c)(4), is serious about building long-term, political power with the aim of transforming our political and economic system into one that puts people and the planet first. Our main office is in Southwest Detroit, with additional offices in Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids, and Flint. As a racial and economic justice organization, we actively encourage individuals who are underrepresented on the basis of race, ethnicity, income and sexual orientation, as well as those who share the life experiences of the members we serve, to apply.