State of the YOUnion

State of the YOUnion 2018

In January 2018, YVote and The LAMP sponsored an exciting State of the YOUnion initiative.  State of the YOUnion aims to get a broad range of young people thinking deeply about what they/YOU would say if giving the State of the Union address–and in recording brief video testimonials to that effect.  Goals of the initiative include:

    • Creating and drawing attention to a compendium of youth voice and vision in relation to the health of our democracy, showing how aware and engaged many young people are
    • Highlighting issues that matter most to young people today
    • Illustrating connections and contrasts between what youth care about and what the President is talking about
    • Spreading awareness and engagement of #18in18 and #22×20 campaigns and ongoing ways to participate


The initiative is part of the 22×20 campaign to dramatically increase youth voter engagement and turnout. The 22×20 is a nonpartisan media literacy and civics education campaign aimed at equipping the 22 million first time voting teens to become informed and engaged first-time voters by 2020. We are building and mobilizing a coalition that will work towards increasing and diversifying teen voice and engagement in national and local conversations and electoral processes in order to be informed and active participants in US democracy.

State of the YOUnion asks youth to respond to the question What would you say if you were asked to speak about the State of the Union in our country or in your community?” or “What do YOU feel you can do to strengthen the State of the Union in our country or in your community?” and  to record and upload videos, using hashtag #22×20 and @YVoteNYAdditional guidance for youth who want to participate (we hope you will!) here.

Youth were encouraged to tune into the President’s State of the Union 2018 speech on Tues, Jan 30 and to critically engage with the content (and the omissions) using The LAMP’s MediaBreaker tool.  The speech can be viewed here.

On Feb 7, YVote and the LAMP hosted a super cool culminating State of the YOUnion Action Party  at Sony Square NYC with meme and GIF stations and opportunities to “remix” the President’s State of the Union speech with their input, annotate the speech, and more. Photos from the powerful event are available here and videos from the event are on our YVideo page.