Here at the ACLU we love to plan. We plan litigation strategies and advocacy campaigns. We have planning meetings about planning. That’s because no matter what you’re trying to achieve – whether it’s getting the kids to school or cooking a meal – having a plan makes it more likely you’ll succeed.
But we know that when it comes to voting, some people just wing it. And as a result, when Election Day comes around, many eligible voters don’t end up making it to the polls.
That’s why the ACLU of Arkansas is urging everyone to confirm their polling location and make a plan to vote with a government-issued photo ID during early voting (through November 5) or on Election Day (November 6).
This is especially important this year, because you can’t assume your polling location is in the same place it was during the primary. Some counties have closed as many as half of their polling places since May. This is troubling, and we’re doing everything we can to make sure voters know their rights so they can cast a ballot and make their voice heard.
Here are five things you need to know:
- Find Your Polling Location: If you’re voting in Arkansas, you can find your polling location by visiting the Secretary of State’s Voter View website.
- Bring Photo ID. Arkansas’ voter ID law was just upheld, which means that Arkansas poll workers will be required to request that voters present a government-issued photo ID card. A free voter verification card is available through the Secretary of State’s office or your county clerk for any voter who does not have another ID valid for voting. If you cannot show ID, you can still cast a provisional ballot that should still count unless there is some non-voter ID reason not to count the ballot.
- Know Your Rights: The ACLU of Arkansas has comprehensive resources and the answers to frequently asked questions on our website. Knowledge is power, and knowing your rights is crucial to defending them.
- Make a Plan: Once you’ve confirmed your polling location, make a plan to vote. Will you drive or take public transportation? Do you need to find a ride? If you will be unavoidably absent from the polls on Election Day, make sure to vote early or absentee.
- Bring A Friend: Friends don’t let friends forget to vote, so bring someone along with you to the polls on Election Day. Recent reports are indicating a surge in voter registrations nationwide. More and more people – of all political stripes – are getting excited and energized to vote. This is a promising trend, because the more people who vote, the stronger our democracy will be.
The stakes in this election couldn’t be higher. Here in Arkansas and across the country, our fundamental rights and values are coming under sustained attack.
Freedom can’t defend itself, it’s going to take all of us – marching, organizing and most importantly showing up at the polls. So make a plan, find your polling place, and get ready to vote like your rights depend on it.
For help or additional information, call the Election Protection Hotline: 866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683) / Para ayuda o más información: 479-763-2822.