Information You Need: How to safely vote in-person

The deadline to register to vote or to request a mail in ballot is October 23rd at 5:00pm! Last week we discussed voting early by mail. For more information about the voting by mail option visit our previous update. If you do choose to vote in person, it is important to remember that this option will look different this year and there are additional safety precautions to consider before voting. Fortunately, to reduce COVID-19 risk, polling locations are implementing physical distancing and sanitation protocols and providing poll workers with personal protective equipment. Despite these safety precautions, it is still important to make a plan for how you will safely vote. The two types of in-person voting (voting early and voting on election day) are outlined in the table below.

In-person Voting OptionsVoting EarlyVoting on Election Day
Voting DatesBegins on October 7, 2020 and continues until election dayNovember 3, 2020
General InformationVoters have the option of voting prior to election day. This option is provided to ensure that everyone has the chance to cast their ballot.Voters arrive at their specified polling location and cast their votes on election day.
Risk levelVoting early in-person is a lower risk option compared to voting on election day. This is because the polls and voting locations are likely to be less crowded, which reduces the potential for COVID-19 exposure.On election day, voting locations have the potential to be more crowded. Luckily, many polling places are implementing sanitization precautions to reduce possible exposures.
Safety precautions to take1. Come prepared
Do research on who you will vote for prior to arriving at the polls. Reducing your time at a polling location will also reduce your COVID-19 risk.

2. Wash your hands & bring hand sanitizer
You should thoroughly wash your hands (or use a 70% alcohol based hand sanitizer) both BEFORE and AFTER you vote.

3. Wear a cloth face covering and maintain physical distancing
Follow CDC guidelines and be sure to keep 6 feet between you and others during the entire time you are at your polling location

4. Bring your own pen 
Bringing your own blue or black pen pen to the polling location reduces contact with objects while voting. 
Sharpies or other permanent markers are not allowed.

5. Bring a disinfecting wipe
Bring a disinfecting wipe and wipe down the surface where you will be resting your ballot before you start voting.
Discard it carefully in either a baggie you bring with you or a nearby trash can. 

6. Avoid touching your face
COVID-19 has the potential to be spread via contaminated surfaces. Although this mode of transmission is less likely compared to having close contact with an infected person, it is still important to avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
For more information about the different modes of transmission, visit our previous update.

7. Leave food or beverages at home
Eating or drinking while at a polling location is not sanitary and can increase the risk of COVID-19 due to potential contact with contaminated surfaces or objects
If you anticipate a long wait at the polling location, plan ahead to avoid eating while you wait!

8. Do not bring young mobile children with you to vote if at all possible. 
It will be harder to concentrate on voting and ensure children are safely distancing, wearing a cloth covering, and not touching possibly contaminated surfaces.
If you have no option, bring your children, it is incredibly important to vote but try to make other arrangements.
One option is a “voting buddy” who could watch children outside of the polling location while you take turns going in to vote; this could be a relative, partner, or friend.
Where to voteVisit this link to find your specific voting location for all counties in Arizona
For voting in Maricopa County, you can visit this link to find a voting location
For voting in Pima County, you can visit this link to find a voting location
What to bring with youA photo ID (e.g., Arizona driver’s license or valid United States federal, state, or local government-issued form of identification). For more detailed information, visit this link.
Your cloth face covering
70% alcohol based hand sanitizer
A disinfecting wipe
Your own pen (blue or black ink, no sharpies)
What NOT to bring with youUnnecessary personal items (e.g., bags)
Food and beverages
Anyone with you (e.g., children) who is not voting

To check the status of your ballot, visit this website. For any additional questions, please visit Arizona.vote or you can reach the Secretary of State’s office at 1-877-THE-VOTE.

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