Long lines at the polls and bad information limit your voice. My plan to address Detroit’s persistent issues at the polls is clear; open new polling places, recast election day poll workers, encourage early absentee voting, and plan for replacing outdated voting machines.
Send voters information automatically
There’s so much information floating around during election seasons that it’s easy to miss the important information. Using new tools, Detroit voters will have immediate, always-on access easy access to election day and absentee ballot reminders, polling place locations, and information about what’s on the ballot.
Open new polling places
Many Detroiters do not have cars, and, while public transportation has been improving in recent years, there are still places in the city where it is hard to get around. That is why it is vital we look for ways to increase the number of polling places to ensure that every Detroit resident who wants to vote will always have a mile or less to walk to their precinct. And we’ll make sure that the process is clear and well designed so you can be in and out fast.
Train poll workers year-round
We hear the same stories each election cycle: there are too few people volunteering to be poll workers, and those who do volunteer work 12 or more hour shifts. Those shifts can lead to tired volunteers making errors—errors that can affect the outcome of an election.
I will immediately begin recruiting new poll workers and volunteers upon taking office. This is a priority—Detroiters deserve poll workers who are well trained and ready to help you speed through the voting process as quickly and easily as possible.
Encourage early absentee voting
Tuesdays are not always a convenient day for people to vote. In order to make sure more Detroiters have their voices heard, I will be opening early voting as soon as legally possible before each election and will make it well known when voting starts. And for voters who’d rather drop their ballots off in person, we’ll open locations in every City Council district to accept completed ballots.
Plan for regular replacement of voting machines
Anyone who has worked with technology knows it breaks. But waiting for the State of Michigan to pay for more equipment is a recipe for more election night headaches. Rather than waiting, I will implement a regular schedule for replacing broken and obsolete equipment. This plan will allow us to budget for the purchases and work with vendors well in advance to get the most value out of your taxpayer dollars, and keep our poll workers’ skills up to date.
Maximize the youth vote
StartVoting Initiative: Specific education and programs for first-time voters
Put in place programs in schools to prepare and motivate every student turning 18 before Election Day to vote.