Recognizing that the August and November elections will have unique challenges related to COVID-19, Connecticut Secretary of the State Denise Merrill today announced a statewide effort to recruit poll workers for Connecticut's primary and general elections.
Voters interested in working at the polls should sign up at myvote.ct.gov/volunteer.
"One of the major effects of COVID-19 we have seen in other states is the struggle to staff polling places and local election offices," said Secretary Merrill. "We are working with our local election officials to make sure that they have the resources they need for the elections in August and November, including adequate staffing. No Connecticut voter will have to choose between protecting their health and exercising their right to vote."
COVID-19 is a disease that passes via direct person-to-person contact and has disproportionate adverse effects on senior citizens and people with pre-existing conditions. The poll worker population, in Connecticut and nationally, tend to be older than the population at large and more likely to have risk factors for COVID-19.
At the same time that a portion of the poll worker community may not be able to work in August or November, COVID-19 is changing our elections. Polls will now feature social distancing and personal protective equipment (PPE), and Town Clerks offices are preparing for a much higher volume of absentee ballots than there are in a typical election.
The Office of the Secretary of the State is able to pay for towns' additional expenses related to COVID-19 through federal CARES Act funds, including the hiring of additional poll workers to work in polling places, registrars' office, and Town Clerks' offices. Opportunities are available across the state.
Interested voters should sign up here: myvote.ct.gov/volunteer