SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF. -- With just 19 days until Election Day, the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters’ Office is facing a critical shortage of workers to serve at 824 polling places throughout the County. Approximately 1,400 Election Officers are still needed to reach our goal of over 4,000.
Election Officers are especially needed in Palo Alto, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Saratoga, and San Jose’s Almaden, Willow Glen and Downtown neighborhoods.
“It is always hard to recruit Election Officers in a Primary Election,” said Registrar of Voters Shannon Bushey. “People may be going on summer vacation, in the midst of exams or already out of school and out of town. We want to get the word out that we do have an urgent need for people to sign up for this vital function of democracy.”
Bushey said bilingual workers are in particular demand to meet voter needs in diverse communities throughout the County. She added despite the current shortage, all polling places will be open on June 5.
“We are confident that if the word gets out there that we really need people to sign up, we will see more recruitment in coming weeks,” Bushey said. “We would like to see the full complement on hand at each polling place as well as some reserve officers in the wings.”
Election Officers perform fundamental functions such as checking in voters, providing a ballot, collecting the ballot and making sure that it is returned to the ROV for counting and tallying. They protect the voter’s right to cast a ballot in a safe, secure, nonpartisan atmosphere and provide assistance when necessary – such as for voters who speak a language other than English or voters who have a disability.
Election Officers earn a stipend of up to $200 for volunteering at the polls. Election Officers need to be citizens 18 years or older who are registered to vote, or legal permanent residents, or high school students age 16 or older. Experience is not necessary and training is provided.