This year, more than ever, the hard work of poll workers enabled millions of Virginians to cast their votes safely and “poll workers have always been the backbone of our free and fair Democratic process,” declared Deb Wake, president of the League of Women Voters of Virginia. “This year, their work was not only especially vital, it was also more personally dangerous, and still they stepped up to volunteer.”
She noted that poll workers arrived at their polling sites by 5:00 a.m. on Election Day and this year, many drove miles across the state to fill in for gaps caused by the pandemic.
During what is often a 16-hour day, poll workers greeted and assisted thousands of voters. Many changes to Virginia’s election laws, complicated by a pandemic, meant voter questions and confusion were at an all time high. Early voting started in Virginia on Sept. 18.
Laws enacted this year positioned Virginia to have one of the longest early voting periods in the country.
Election staff and volunteers have been answering one of the most important calls to keep Democracy working for a very long time in unprecedented circumstances. “Virginians don’t have to look far to find a hero,” Wake said.