Megan Hessl • The Good of Goshen

Megan Hessl

Election Poll Worker, 2020

Published Oct. 2020

I want to make sure that everybody has the chance to vote. I don’t care who you vote for. I just want you to come out and vote.

I was excited when I turned 18 to be able to vote for the first time. One thing I noticed back then is that a lot of retired people are the poll workers. They don’t have a job that they have to miss that day, so they’re happy to give their services to the election board. I just kind of thought about that: They’re in that protected status right now where we don’t want them to be the poll workers, necessarily, because the virus could affect them in a different way. That’s what made me want to be a poll worker – just wanting to try to do it for someone who maybe isn’t feeling safe enough to do it this year.

This is actually my first time as a poll worker. I also volunteered my husband Adam to work with me.

I think it’s really going to be exciting to see people who are 18 voting for the very first time. I’m hoping I encounter some people who are a little bit older and maybe this is also their first time voting.

Poll workers will be required to wear a mask, but since it’s a political event we can’t require voters to wear a mask. They’re definitely going to be encouraged, and someone at the door will have masks available to hand out to people. Hand sanitizer will be everywhere. There will be a plexiglass shield between the voter and the poll worker, and you’ll just hold your ID up to the plexiglass and we’ll enter your information that way, so it’s touchless. Rather than the election board investing in wipes to wipe down every machine, every voter will be handed a Q-tip, and you will enter your vote with a Q-tip. Again, to keep it as touchless as possible. The election board wants us to be as safe as possible for every single person involved.

Writing, editing, and photography by Scott Weisser and Neil King

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