‘Time to Vote’ campaign encourages companies to offer employees incentives to vote

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Through a campaign called “Time to Vote,” companies across the country are encouraging employees to vote by making sure it does not impact their paychecks.

The goal is to increase voter participation in the U.S. elections and more than 700 companies have signed up, like local Indianapolis company Hotel Tango Distillery.

They are paying all 50 employees to go and vote, no matter how long it takes. Founder Hilary Barnes says a democracy thrives on participation and without it, the outcome won’t be what you want it to be. Some employees have signed up to work the polls on Election Day, another incentive offered by Hotel Tango. A group of employees voted early at the City-County Building downtown.

“I think when you’re faced with paying your rent or getting to vote, that’s a hard decision to make there,” Hotel Tango Distillery founder Hilary Burnes says. “So it’s to alleviate any sort of concern there and give people the time to vote. We don’t want people to worry about taking time off or worry about unpaid time. This gets rid of that whole equation.”

More than 200 companies have joined the movement in the last two months. Those include Nike, Macy’s, Tyson Foods and Visa. Executives from PayPal, Patagonia and Levi Strauss founded the non-partisan project two years ago.

Hotel Tango hopes to see more companies across the state join the movement.