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Young people can solve poll worker shortage

AZ Daily Sun, Maya Patel:

While the process to become a poll worker varies by state, offers a one-stop location for information about staffing your local polling place. Initiatives such as Power the Polls, which hopes to recruit 250,000 Americans to serve as poll workers this year, also help guide people through the process.

The number of polling locations across the country has been rapidly falling in recent years even before the coronavirus, and many fear that the closures have disproportionately harmed impoverished areas and communities of color. During the 2018 midterms, Latinx and Black voters were more likely to report longer wait times at polling locations than white voters.

It should be no surprise that polling location closures often worsen wait times, making voting less accessible to certain communities. In the wake of the Supreme Court’s 2013 decision in Shelby County v. Holder, which diluted the Voting Rights Act, the Leadership Conference Education Fund found that at least 1,688 polling locations were shut down in areas where closures would have previously required approval under the Voting Rights Act. Texas alone closed 750 polling locations during that period, the largest number of them in Dallas County, which has a majority Latinx and Black population. Travis County, where I worked as a poll worker last March, had the second largest number of closures, in a county that is over 30% Latinx.

Read the full article here.


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