Voter suppression is one of the United States’ ugly traditions. While some are praising voters for being willing to wait in line for hours in order to vote, it is revealing ugly truths about what voter suppression continues to look like in 2020. The best example of this has been seen in nonwhite voters in Georgia waiting in line for hours to cast their ballot.
These long lines at the polls have been attributed to not enough polling stations. Since 2013, more than 1,200 polling stations have been closed in southern states, as a result of a Supreme Court decision that struck down sections of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The Supreme Court decision has even led to some states implementing other restrictions, such as shorter voting hours and photo-ID requirements. These actions have resulted in hours long waiting times for many across the United States.
In the face of all of this, it is still important to make a plan to vote. Check in on friends and family members to ensure they have a plan to get out and vote. For more information on candidates in your area, check out VOTE 411 for the latest information.
If it is still an option in your state, consider voting by mail. If your state has early voting sites, consider casting your ballot before Election Day. If you aren’t sure, you can check this information at our voter center, where there is plenty of information on voter ID laws, deadlines for each state’s vote by mail process, and much more.
For those who must cast their vote in person on Election Day, wear a mask and make a plan to arrive at your polling station early to ensure your vote is cast.
Finally, if you are able, have already cast your vote and are located where voter suppression is taking place, consider volunteering on election day. There are many organizations who are looking for individuals to assist in transportation to and from polling locations. Others are looking for volunteers to help feed those who may be waiting in long lines to cast their ballot.
With any election, there is a lot at stake. From ensuring access to healthcare to access to housing, your vote matters to millions across the United States. Make a plan and get out to vote this election.