Poll Worker Shortage? No Worries, Young Adults Step Up
Updated: Jan 10, 2021
YR Media, Lucy Barnum:
Many places also require workers to be registered to vote in their county and complete training before Election Day. Although applying can be time-consuming (Lebowitz said the process took her three weeks), poll workers can earn between $75 and $500 on average, depending on their precinct and how long they work.
“It’s hard to manage because some days we will get over a thousand sign-ups … and sometimes we’ll get like 300,” Lebowitz said. “But the response has been amazing. And so many people are so excited about the project.”
Another organization focused on recruiting poll workers is Power the Polls. They work on a much larger scale — their end goal is to sign up 250,000 poll workers — and partner with companies like Comedy Central, Uber and Starbucks to reach a wider audience.
Zachary Price, the Southern regional coordinator for the Campus Vote Project, a Power the Polls partner organization, said since the initiative is designed for college students, the fellows he directs tailor their recruitment strategy to their individual school.
“They know their campus better than we do,” he said. “That’s how you organize effectively. You meet voters where they are.”
The Campus Vote project focuses its resources in 10 states they predict will have poll worker shortages. As polling locations were forced to close due to worker shortages last spring, long voting lines in Wisconsin, Georgia and Michigan — three of the states Campus Votes works in — made national news.
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