New York is holding local elections this year for Town and County roles which meant John Cronin showed up at an early voting site to cast his ballot.
“Voting is so important,” says John Cronin, co-founder of John’s Crazy Socks. “It is how I make my voice heard. And it is how we make sure elected officials pay attention to us.”
John is a well-known entrepreneur who happens to have Down syndrome. “It is very important that people see me, a man with Down syndrome, voting. People with differing abilities have been ignored for too long and voting is the best way to make people hear us.”
Standing Up for the Rights of People with Differing Abilities
The organization Self Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE) found that people with disabilities were not voting as the same rate as the rest of the population. Many think that people with disabilities are not able to vote.
John Cronin wants to change those patterns. Before every election, he carefully reads about every candidate and every issue. “I do my research,” says John. “If I don’t understand something, I do more research or ask my parents for help,” said John. “It is important to get help when you need it, but in the end, it is my vote and my choice.” John added, “I tell people, it is with us, not for us. It is my life and my decisions.”
Through his advocacy work, John has met many elected officials. He writes to them and speaks often about issues affecting people with differing abilities. “I watch how they vote and if they support issues that matter to people with disabilities. That helps me determine how I will vote.”
To Be Included Means To Vote
John Cronin advocates inclusion in the workplace and in the community. “If we want to be included, we need to vote,” said John.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimates that 25 percent of American adults have some form of a disability. That is too large a group to ignore. By voting, people make elected officials pay attention.
Through his business and in his own life, John wants to show what people with differing abilities can do. Voting is an essential part of citizenship and John demonstrates that people with differing abilities are engaged citizens. “That means we have to vote. Justin Dart said, “Vote as if your life depended on it… because it does.”
John is a fierce advocate for people with differing abilities. John has testified twice before the U.S. Congress and traveled to the State Capitol in Albany to meet with legislators. He routinely meets with members of Congress in Washington D.C. and in their district offices.
Be like John: never miss an opportunity to vote. Make sure your voice is heard.
About John’s Crazy Socks
John’s Crazy Socks was inspired by John Lee Cronin, a young man with Down syndrome, and his love of colorful and fun socks—what he calls his “crazy socks.” He and his father, Mark X. Cronin, started the company as a social enterprise with a mission of Spreading Happiness™. With more than 4,000 socks, John’s Crazy Socks is now the world’s largest sock store. More than half their employees have a differing ability, and their Giving Back program has raised over $650,000 for charity partners like the Special Olympics, the National Down Syndrome Society, and the Autism Society of America. Most of all, they are Spreading Happiness™.
For more information about John’s Crazy Socks, visit our webpage, Facebook page, Instagram account, TikTok or YouTube channel. You can also contact us at 631-760-5625 or via email at email@example.com.