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All the Shoe Brands and Retailers Helping to Get Out the Vote for the 2022 Midterm Elections

The 2022 midterm elections are fast approaching on Tuesday, Nov. 8, when Americans will vote in pivotal national, state and local races that will help decide the future of the country. Issues like inflation and abortion are likely to be major factors for citizens as they cast their ballots, as well as judgments on the performance of the Biden administration and other officials.

To help encourage Americans to turn out to the polls, a growing list of brands and retailers are helping to get out the vote. Many are launching consumer-facing initiatives to whip up excitement ahead of November, while others are creating more opportunity for their employees and customers to head to the polls.

Below is list of all the footwear and fashion companies celebrating our civic duty in 2022.

Argent

On National Voters Registration Day (Sept. 20), Argent launched a pop-up shop in New York City in partnership with women’s advocacy group Supermajority. At the store, which is open through Sept. 25 at 27 Mercer St., visitors can check to see if they are registered to vote in the 2022 midterms. The store also features the permanent return of Argent’s viral pink suit, with the proceeds benefiting Supermajority. Back in 2020, the hot-pink outfit, which was part of the Argent x Supermajority’s Election collection, sold out within 24 hours after celebrities such as Brooklyn Decker, Kerry Washington and Amy Schumer wore the pantsuit.

Argent x Supermajority
Argent x Supermajority’s NYC pop-up is located at 27 Mercer street.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Argent

DTLR

DTLR has partnered with mobile app Politicking to provide voter education and empower civic participation within its communities. The app, which is backed by DTLR, was founded by two Howard University graduates to improve and increase the millennial vote by providing information about both micro and macro politics. Looking ahead, Politicking will be seen at the upcoming DTLR block parties in Washington, D.C. and North Carolina, as well as at the For Oak Cliff Back to School event in Dallas and the Bowie State University and Morgan State University Welcome Back events. At these events, DTLR said attendees will get more information on the app and its mission.

Esquivel

Designer George Esquivel is throwing his support behind I Am a Voter, a nonpartisan movement that aims to create a cultural shift around voting and civic engagement. He has created a limited-edition men’s and women’s court sneaker that features a tattoo on the heel that reads “I am a voter.” The shoes are available from Sept. 19-Nov. 8 at Esquivel House in DTLA and on Georgeesquivel.com, retailing for $325. According to the brand, 15% of the retail price will go toward supporting the I Am a Voter organization.

George Esquivel I Am a Voter sneaker
George Esquivel is donating 15% of proceeds from this sneaker to the I Am a Voter organization.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Esquivel

Footwear Distributors & Retailers of America

FDRA launched the online education center ShoeVoter.info in 2020 and continues to offer the vital resource for the 2022 elections. Its nonpartisan online hub, which is maintained by a third party, offers users a range of information, including each state’s registration rules and deadlines, absentee ballot guidelines, voting locations and requirements, plus a list of candidates in their district. Andy Polk, SVP at FDRA, said ShoeVoter.info can be particularly useful for national or regional retail chains. “If you’re a Foot Locker or Famous Footwear, with employees all over the country, it’s hard to educate every single section of those [team members] with all those rules,” he said. “This is a personalized website where you plug in your mailing address and it tells you exactly what you need to know. It simplifies the complexity of the decentralized election system that we have.”

Kenneth Cole

When it comes to civic engagement, designer Kenneth Cole has been carrying the banner for decades. And for the 2022 election season, his brand will continue those efforts by supporting the I Am a Voter organization, a nonpartisan movement working to create a cultural shift around voting. The brand is now offering a new Voice Wear t-shirt that bears the message “Vote to Exist.” The unisex soft cotton-jersey shirt is cut for a relaxed fit and comes in two versions: white with black lettering, and black with white lettering. The retail price is $40, and from now until Nov. 30, the brand will donate $10 from each Vote to Exist T-shirt sold on Kennethcole.com to I Am a Voter.

Kenneth Cole Vote to Exist T-shirt
Kenneth Cole’s “Vote to Exist” T-shirt benefits the I Am a Voter nonprofit.
CREDIT: Courtesy of Kenneth Cole

REI Co-op

REI Co-op is encouraging its employees to exercise their right to vote this November by delaying the opening of its stores by two hours this election day to give every employee paid time off for civic engagement. As part of its Your Vote Can’t Wait campaign, the co-op has also created an election resource hub for employees and members alike at REI.com/vote. It includes a range of tools, including one that allows users to register to vote, another to check their registration status and to get personalized election reminders. Important dates this voting season are also listed as well as information for how to get involved in the election process.

REI Store, Seattle
An REI store in Seattle, Wash.
CREDIT: Courtesy of REI
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