FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Voting Rights Advocates Ask Governor for Increased Voter Education Efforts Ahead of June 2 Election
The League of Women Voters of Maryland, Common Cause Maryland, NALEO and other voting rights advocates today urged Governor Larry Hogan to increase voter education and outreach efforts ahead of the June 2, 2020 Primary Election amid changes to the process necessitated to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The groups' recommendations included funding and resource allocation for communications via a variety of media sources and in multiple languages. The full letter is below:
The Honorable Larry Hogan
Governor, State of Maryland
100 State Circle
Annapolis, MD 21401
Dear Governor Hogan:
We thank you for your efforts to rapidly shift election procedures as we all work to adjust our lives and habits to prevent the spread of COVID-19. We are grateful that plans have been set in motion to shift our June 2 Presidential Primary to a primarily vote by mail election and that limited in-person polling places will be available to those who need them. However, we have learned from the April 28, 2020 election that much more work is needed to educate the public about these changes.
In order to effectively reach every eligible voter with this information[i], a significant amount of funding and resources must be allocated for voter education efforts. We must produce communications in multiple languages and utilize a variety of communication methods including but not limited to: phone banking, robocalls, text messaging, email, social media messaging, television advertisements, radio advertisements, other online ad platforms such as YouTube, Pandora, Spotify, etc.
Furthermore, the state should collaborate closely with voting rights advocates and community groups who represent diverse voices throughout the state, including those representing the rights of voters with disabilities and incarcerated voters, to ensure these communications reach all Marylanders.
The state must make a robust effort to inform every Marylander who is eligible to vote about how, when and where they can do so. We ask that you present and fund a plan as soon as possible to ensure that every eligible citizen has the opportunity to exercise their right to vote on June 2, 2020.
Thank you for your leadership during this challenging time.
League of Women Voters Maryland
Common Cause Maryland
Out for Justice, Inc.
Indivisible Howard County
NALEO Education Fund
[i] The Information Voters Need Includes but May Not be Limited To:
- WHEN the election will take place
- Including, clarification on how their ballot will still say the election will take place on April 28th
- WHEN they will receive their ballot
- WHEN they must turn in their ballot
- HOW they can return their ballot - by mail, drop box, or in-person on Election Day
- WHERE they can vote in person or return their ballots to a drop box
- POSTAGE WILL BE PREPAID
- WHAT to do if they have already requested an absentee ballot
- WHAT to do if they receive two ballots in the mail due to an absentee ballot request
- WHAT to do if they HAVE NOT received a ballot
- WHAT to do if they received a ballot but they would like to change their party affiliation
- WHEN they may register to vote or update their voter registration
- HOW they may register to vote
- HOW to check their current voter registration status
- HOW and when to update their voter registration if they’ve moved or need to update party affiliation
The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy. Membership is open to men and women of all ages. With over 750 affiliates across the county, the League is one of the nation’s most trusted organizations.