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How we are ensuring health and safety at our polling locations

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Election

We have information below around COVID-19 safety measures in place at polling locations during the 2020 Election season.

Poll workers who are sick, have tested positive for COVID-19, or have recently had a close contact with a person with COVID-19 must stay home. The Warden will ask each poll worker the following screening questions upon arrival. Questions include asking if, in the last 24 hours, a poll worker has developed a:

  • new cough?
  • new shortness of breath?
  • new total body aches?
  • fever?
  • loss of taste?

If the poll worker answers yes to any of the above questions, they will not be permitted to work. All poll workers will receive a personal protective equipment (PPE) kit including:

  • Surgical masks
  • Face shields
  • Gloves
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Disinfectant wipes
  • Disinfectant spray

Hygiene

Voters will be encouraged to sanitize their hands upon entering the polling location. A poll worker will be assigned to the entrance of the polling location to greet voters and dispense hand sanitizer.

Voters will be instructed to make sure their hands are completely dry prior to touching the ballot. This will prevent voters from depositing a wet ballot into the voting machine, causing damage.

Poll workers will wash their hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, they will use hand sanitizer.


Face coverings

  • Surgical face masks will also be provided with poll workers' PPE kits. The Election Department will also provide face shields. Surgical face masks and face shields MUST be worn together.
  • Posters promoting the use of face masks in multiple languages will be posted in highly visible areas.
  • Voters are encouraged to use face coverings while in the polling location. Masks will be offered and provided to voters who may not have one.

Social distancing

  • A poll worker at the entrance of the polling location will manage the lines to ensure social distancing can be maintained.
  • Voters will be encouraged to stay at least 6 feet apart from others. Markings will be placed on the floor as a visual cue for where voters should stand. In smaller locations, voters may have to wait outside of the polling location and cued inside once the voting area has been cleared.
  • Voting booths will be spaced 6 feet apart where possible and limited to two voters per booth.
  • Voters and workers will be discouraged from greeting others with physical contact.

Cleaning and disinfecting

  • Frequently-touched surfaces, such as voting booths, check-in and check-out tables, clipboards, auto-mark machines, will be constantly disinfected.
  • Voters will be handed a marking pen with their ballot at the check-in table. The voter will be instructed to return the used pen to the check-out table. All used marking pens will be disinfected before they can be redistributed.
  • In addition to the cleaning supplies provided to the poll workers, the Election Department has assembled cleaning crews to periodically disinfect high touch areas such as door handles.
  • After the polling location closes, all facility areas and items, including all tables, chairs and door handles will be cleaned and disinfected.