What is a Poll Worker?
Next to casting a ballot yourself, serving as a poll worker is the most important thing you can do to help our democracy thrive. This website is meant to help simplify the process of becoming a poll worker by providing visitors with the information they need to serve their neighbors in the voting process.
Poll workers play a crucial role in ensuring the strength and integrity of the voting process. They are the lifeblood of a well-run election system and they help secure our rights as U.S. citizens. Eligible voters should not be turned away from the polls or be prevented from voting because of long, slow-moving lines or confusing rules. That is why we are calling on you to support your community by becoming a poll worker. In doing so, you will:
- Serve inside a polling place, checking in voters, answering their questions, setting up and testing voting machines, issuing ballots, and other tasks.
- Be a resource for voters who encounter problems – from registration issues to voter ID questions to language barriers.
- Attend training held by election officials to learn the rules and mechanics of the voting process.
- Get paid for your work and, in some cases, get paid for the time you spend in training sessions.
As a poll worker during the early voting period or on Election Day, there are different roles you may fill. While your responsibilities will vary by jurisdiction and position, there are certain aspects of working at the polls that you can count on:
- Before Election Day you will be trained by election staff in the county or municipality in which you’re working. They will give you an overview of election rules, your responsibilities, and common situations that you may encounter at the polls. This training may take place either in-person or online, and will likely last a few hours.
- Poll workers help prepare their polling place for Election Day. You may be asked to report early on Election Day to assist in setting up the location before voters arrive.
- During your shift, you will interact with voters. You may be in charge of greeting voters, ensuring orderly lines, checking in voters to receive their ballot, or helping voters who request assistance.
- When the polls close, anyone who is in line at the closing time will be permitted to cast their vote. As a poll worker, you are required to remain at the polling location during your shift. Some jurisdictions allow poll workers to work part of the day, but many require them to remain for the entire day.
- After the polls close, you may be asked to help with cleaning up the polling place or securing and transferring voting materials to local election officials. Some poll workers may be tasked with delivering ballots to a designated location.
- After that, you are free to leave and enjoy watching the results unfold, with the knowledge that you were an integral part in making the election possible.
Help make voting possible in your community and sign up today!