The spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in unprecedented but necessary changes to our lives. Social distancing and isolation are the best ways we can slow down the spread of the virus, by avoiding public places as much as possible.

At the ACLU of Arkansas, we’re committed to continuing to defend your constitutional rights during this crisis. We are watching to make sure the government’s response is grounded in science, and staying vigilant against attempts to unnecessarily infringe on civil liberties. 

One of our top priorities is making sure Arkansans can continue to participate in our democracy – even as they avoid public spaces.  

In response to this pandemic, the Arkansas State Board of Elections has announced that all eligible voters are now able to vote absentee in the upcoming March 31 runoff elections being held in Arkansas, Benton, Conway, Craighead, Garland, Grant, Greene, Hot Spring, Jefferson, Lonoke, Saline, and White counties. 

Voting is essential to maintaining our democracy and defending our civil rights. Absentee voting allows you to protect yourself while still making your voice heard.

The process to absentee voting is simple and accessible. To help people transition to absentee voting, we’ve compiled the necessary information to make this process as smooth as possible.

Steps to voting by mail/absentee voting

  1. Contact your country clerk to request an absentee ballot application be sent to you or download one here.
  2. Complete and send application to your county clerk through one of the following:
    • Send by mail, fax, or email 7 days before the election
    • Submit in person by the day before election
    • Choose a family member, friend, or other person to submit by day before election
    • A person authorized by an administrative head of hospital or nursing home with an affidavit can turn in your application by 1:30 PM on Election Day
  3. Once you receive your ballot, follow the directions closely and fill out your ballot. 
  4. Deliver your ballot to your clerk's office by mail, chosen individual, or in person.
    • Ballots mailed in or turned in by someone you choose must be received by 7:30 PM on Election Day
    • Ballots returned in person must be received by day before election

Despite the uncertainty of these times, you still have rights. For more information on your voting rights see our information on voting when homeless, voting after a criminal conviction, and voting in arkansas

For more information visit the Secretary of State website. For questions and concerns contact the SOS at voterservices@sos.arkansas.gov, your county clerk, or call: 866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683).