TW Aids L.A. 'Civic Literacy’


There might be a few more voters — and more informed voters — at the polls in Los Angeles County this November.

At least that’s the hope of Time Warner Cable’s Los Angeles division, which has launched a civic literacy public affairs program to heighten awareness of the political process.

The drive began in February, when the system paired a screening of HBO’s Iron Jawed Angels, depicting events surrounding the passage of the 14th Amendment, with a voter-education drive.

Now the division has partnered with groups such as the League of Women Voters and the regional chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored Persons to promote registration at each of their events.

The gathering also attracted people who signed up to volunteer at the county Registrar’s Office.

A whole series of events are planned to involve young people, added spokesman Deane Leavenworth.

“Voter turnout is lowest among the young, yet they are the ones who’ll live longest with the policies,” Leavenworth said.

The cable company is soliciting the participation of politicians to go into the schools and explain how and when they became involved with politics. Time Warner will also sponsor viewing parties in July, coinciding with the Democratic National Convention, and in August, during the Republican convention.

Analysts will be invited to the parties to discuss the action at the nominating conventions.

The parties also will be Webcast, with high school and college students solicited to send in e-mail questions.

Time Warner will attempt to integrate its efforts with those of programming networks including MTV and C-SPAN. This week the network’s bus will be at Los Angeles City Hall, and that will provide a platform for local public-affairs shows to interview officials on why kids should be involved in the political process.

The civic literacy is an offshoot of Time Warner’s corporate pro-literacy advocacy. The company conducts such drives as “Time to Read,” prompting pleasure reading by children, and contests rewarding children for essays in the style of Dr. Seuss.