America is in the midst of a nationwide poll worker shortage, and the consequences have already been felt in recent primaries with reduced polling locations, long lines, and voters waiting in line for several hours.
Most poll workers are over the age of 60, and in this era of uncertainty caused by the coronavirus, fewer are signing up for the job. In-person polling locations will require at least a million workers and volunteers, and there are less than 100 days to recruit and train them to make sure polls are appropriately staffed.
That’s why Levi Strauss & Co. is proud to join Power the Polls which aims to recruit up to 250,000 Americans who are interested in signing up to be election workers or volunteers to keep all polling sites safe, readily open, and available for delay-free, in-person voting.
Power the Polls will focus on recruiting low-risk, healthy and more diverse individuals to staff in-person voting locations during early voting and on Election Day in order to ensure that those who choose or need to vote in-person are able to do so safely and delay-free.
“We’re excited about this new, expanded initiative to recruit people to be poll workers for the Fall elections,” said Fair Elections Center President Robert Brandon. “We established Work Elections to provide information and make it easy for folks to sign up. This year, with the pandemic affecting the ability of many people who normally work at the polls, we’re pleased to join with these partners to get the word out that poll workers are going to be desperately needed in many communities to help ensure a safe and fair election for voters.”
This campaign builds off of LS&Co.’s commitment to empower employees to use their five hours of paid volunteer time a month to participate in civic engagement activities like being a poll worker, registering others to vote and volunteering for the issues they care about. It also complements our efforts to give the employees the time they need to vote on Election Day through Time to Vote.
The initiative is being launched by nonprofit organizations and businesses, including Civic Alliance, Comedy Central, Fair Elections Center, Levi Strauss & Co, MTV, Patagonia, Pizza to the Polls, Time To Vote, Uber, and We Can Vote—with a goal of recruiting more partners.
To see how you can volunteer to be a poll worker, visit Power the Polls.