January 10, 2022
U.S. Election Assistance Commission Announces January 25th as Second Annual National Poll Worker Recruitment Day, Encourages More Americans to Become Election Workers
Established in 2020, the goal of the event is to raise awareness about the importance of poll workers and inspire Americans to engage in the electoral process and sign up.
WASHINGTON, DC – In the lead-up to the 2022 midterm elections, and with the nation still facing a continued shortage of election workers, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) today announced that January 25, 2022 will be designated as the second annual National Poll Worker Recruitment Day. Established in 2020, the event aims to address the potential shortage of poll workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic, inspire greater civic engagement, and help ensure safe and accurate elections in 2022 and beyond.
To learn more about National Poll Worker Recruitment Day and how you can get involved, visit HelpAmericaVote.gov. This webpage has a lookup tool with links to state and local applications, information, and requirements for election workers.
“Poll workers are a critical part of our electoral system. These individuals devote their time to help ensure those in their community are able to participate in our electoral system. Many jurisdictions are still facing a shortage for these critical positions and the EAC hopes to assist in state and local recruitment efforts with National Poll Worker Recruitment Day,” said EAC Chairman Donald Palmer. “We want to facilitate Americans with a way to step up and serve their neighbor and greater community. We encourage Americans, who are able and willing to serve, to sign up to help America vote.”
While specific duties and compensation vary depending on location, most jurisdictions task election workers with setting up and preparing the polling location, welcoming voters, verifying voter registrations, and issuing ballots. Poll workers also help ensure voters understand the voting process by demonstrating how to use voting equipment and explaining voting procedures. Election staff and poll workers are overseen by local election authorities, which also provide training in advance of Election Day.
“Being a poll worker is one of the most meaningful and rewarding ways that everyday citizens can help America vote. Poll workers are responsible for guiding voters through the voting process and relaying the necessary information to make our elections accessible and secure,” said EAC Vice Chair Thomas Hicks. “Poll worker shortages can have a significant impact on our elections, leading to longer lines, fewer polling locations, and more confusion at the polls. To ensure that our democracy can function properly, we need more Americans to sign up as poll workers.”
Even as many states expanded access to vote-by-mail and absentee voting options, millions of Americans – especially voters with disabilities and those who lack reliable mail service –continue to rely on in-person voting options to cast a ballot. Having an adequate number of poll workers to staff polling places on and before Election Day can ensure voters receive the assistance they need at the polls and can help provide a positive and smooth voting experience for all.
National Poll Worker Recruitment Day is an example of positive civic engagement in elections with the goal of encouraging potential poll workers to sign up to Help America Vote. Poll workers help to maintain our democratic republic by facilitating the power of the people in casting a free and secret ballot to choose their representation.
The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) was established by the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA). It is an independent, bipartisan commission charged with ensuring secure, accurate and accessible elections by developing guidance to meet HAVA requirements, adopting voluntary voting system guidelines, and serving as a national clearinghouse of information on election administration. EAC also accredits testing laboratories and certifies voting systems, as well as administers the use of HAVA funds. For more information, visit www.eac.gov.
EAC Contact: Kristen Muthig