There may not be any events happening at the Galen Center this fall but one could say that the first event it does hold in the fall season of 2020 will be its most important.
On November 3, Election Day, USC Trojans men’s and women’s basketball as well as volleyball team’s home site of the Galen Center will serve as a voting site. In fact, you can early vote at Galen all the way from October 30 through Election Day of November 3.
“USC Athletics is pleased to do our part in the election process by opening up the Galen Center as a safe, convenient and accessible place to vote,” said USC athletic director Mike Bohn. “I am proud that this came about because of the efforts of our USC Athletic Black Lives Matter Action Team and our student-athletes. They recognize that the Constitutional right to vote is foundational for our democracy and they steadfastly believe in using their voices and actions to help ensure our country’s future.”
At the corner of Figueroa Street and Jefferson Boulevard, the entrance to vote will be on the building’s south side. You can park for free at the Figueroa Parking Structure, located behind the USC Hotel.
To prevent the spread of COVID-19, strict protocols will be enforced at the Galen Center, including required wearing of masks, social distancing, frequent sanitizing of hands and equipment, adequate ventilation and one-directional foot traffic.
This comes a week after USC announced that every student-athlete would be given Election Day off and free from all athletic activities to ensure that they can exercise their Constitutional right to vote.
On #NationalVoterRegistrationDay , we are proud to announce that Galen Center will be open as a 5-day Voting Center for the 2020 election!— USC Trojans (@USC_Athletics) September 22, 2020
Register to #Vote : https://t.co/oX9suHrOsY#FightOn pic.twitter.com/avpbHEQgWi
This action came from the backs of USC’s United Black Student-Athlete Association, Trojan Athletic Senate and the USC Athletics Black Lives Matter Action Team. The USC Athletics Black Lives Matter Action Team is also in the process of organizing voter literacy events for Trojan student-athletes, department staff as well as coaches.
Eight total teams at USC have also announced that all eligible student-athletes who can vote are indeed registered to vote and the remaining USC teams are organizing registration for their student-athletes who are interested in voting.
“USC Athletics is following a long tradition of athletes demonstrating a concern for civil and human rights beyond their sport,” said Julie Rousseau, chair of USC Athletics’ Black Lives Matter Action Team. “A long list of athletes, such as Paul Robeson, Jesse Owens, Wilma Rudolph, Muhammad Ali, Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, John Carlos and Tommie Smith, Althea Gibson and Billie Jean King, are icons in that tradition. And we are seeing a resurgence of that spirit among our contemporary athletes like Colin Kaepernick, Chris Long, Allyson Felix, Kyle Korver, Megan Rapinoe, LeBron James, Maya Moore and more. The Trojan Athletic Department is proud to continue that tradition by taking a leadership role in providing a safe and accessible voting site for the 2020 election.”
It is also said that each of these actions are in accordance with the California Voter’s Choice Act of 2016 to modernize elections in the state. The new model allows all voters to choose when, how and where they can cast their ballot with mail-in ballots, in-person early voting and multiple vote centers in their county as options.