Voter protection advocates in Missouri are prepared to assist voters who have questions about their voting rights or face difficulties at the polls on Tuesday. This non-partisan effort in Missouri, organized by Advancement Project, a leading voter protection organization, is part of the nation’s largest Election Protection program, designed to assist all voters who have questions or concerns of any kind on Election Day.
“We have attorneys available to assist voters immediately with questions or problems they may experience at the polls – confusion over voting laws, long lines, names missing from the roster, identification requirements, misinformation or intimidation,” said Advancement Project Senior Attorney Denise Lieberman, a St. Louis-based national voting rights expert who is coordinating the Missouri Election Protection program. We’re here to help voters understand their rights and assert them.”
Advancement Project has also published a list of 10 things Missouri voters should know for the 2016 election, available here: http://www.advancementproject.org/resources/entry/top-10-things-missouri-voters-should-know-for-the-2016-election
"All Americans deserve to vote in an environment without hindrances to the ballot," said Steve Harmon, Vice President of the Mound City Bar Association, which helps coordinate the legal advocates for Election Protection.. "The voting process is a cornerstone of our democracy, and the Mound City Bar Association is proud to join with our partners and colleagues across the state to ensure a smooth election for all voters.”
Advocates have already led the push to support voters at the polling place. Just last night, Advancement Project, the Missouri State Conference of the NAACP, and the Mound City Bar Association sent a letter to Greene County Clerk Shane Schoeller, in response to a misguided decision to place police officers in polling places.
“We will work until the last ballot from the last person in line has been cast without issues,” said Nimrod Chapel, President of the State Conference of the NAACP, one of the partners in the Election Protection effort. “As we fend off attacks on our right to vote, the work and mission of voter protection advocates becomes ever more valuable. We are part to participate in the defense of democracy and ensuring that every voter can make themselves heard.”
“Given the high levels of attention on the voting process this election, advocates’ assistance will be crucial,” said Montague Simmons, AFL-CIO’s National Community Engagement Coordinator for the Midwest, which helps coordinate the monitors at the polls. “It is important that voters feel safe and understand their rights at the polling place.”
The effort will include poll monitors in St. Louis and Kansas City who will distribute voter rights information and answer voter questions. Voter problems reported to a poll monitor or to the Election Protection toll-free hotline will be handled by dozens of Missouri attorneys, organizers and community volunteers stationed at Command Centers in St. Louis and Kansas City and other parts of the state, who will be available to assist voters, get dispatched to the polling place and connect voters with attorneys in real time to engage in legal advocacy if necessary.
Voters across the state with questions can call Election Protection toll free: 866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683) to check their registration and polling place, ask questions or report any problems and get help.