Washington, D.C. — City officials and employees can play a major role in making sure elections are carried out safely and effectively this year, according to a new issue brief from the Center for American Progress.
The brief shows how cities can help facilitate voter registration and participation, recruit poll workers, and mitigate voter confusion while providing valuable support to local election officers in carrying out their duties.
“When it comes to protecting the democratic process in the midst of a pandemic, cities have a critical role to play,” said Danielle Root, associate director of voting rights and access to justice at CAP and author of the brief. “Whether acting on their own or in partnership with election officials and private entities, cities are instrumental in ensuring that no American has to choose between their health and making their voices heard in November.”
Among the actions that city leaders should take:
- Offer all city employees paid time off to vote or serve as poll workers during early voting periods and on Election Day.
- Make city bike sharing free during voting periods and create free, specialized, and accessible bus lines during early voting and on Election Day that shuttle voters and election workers directly to and from polling places.
- Partner with local food banks, grocery stores, and pharmacies to host voter registration and absentee ballot application drives, as well as drives to recruit poll workers.
- Work with election officials to launch mobile vote centers that travel through city neighborhoods, helping people register to vote and apply for and return absentee ballots.
Read the issue brief: “20 Ways Cities Can Promote Safe and Effective Elections in November” by Danielle Root
For more information or to speak with an expert, please contact Sam Hananel at email@example.com.