FFA members who are looking for new ways to get involved in their local community have a great upcoming opportunity. Iowa’s Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig and Secretary of State Paul Pate are suggesting Iowa FFA members and young alumni to take an active role in the 2020 election by helping to staff polling locations.
Like many states, polling places around Iowa rely on precinct election officials to help ensure the election runs smoothly. The pandemic is creating recruiting challenges because most precinct officials are over 60 years old and at increased risk for complications from COVID-19. Responsible, young adults should consider staffing the polls on Nov. 3 to help protect high-risk populations.
“Now more than ever, it’s critical for our young leaders to play active roles in the election process. I’m challenging Iowa FFA members and young alumni to assist in some way at their local polling places on Election Day,” said Naig. “Not only is this a great way to protect the most vulnerable Iowans, but it’s also an opportunity to serve your communities while witnessing democracy in action.”
“This is a great opportunity for FFA members to serve their community, state and nation. It’s an important job,” Pate said. “They’ll be helping ensure Election Day runs smoothly across Iowa. I hope many FFA members will step up.”
Each precinct has an election official who helps check-in voters, answers their questions, guides them through the voting process and guards the integrity of the election. To be a precinct election official in Iowa, an individual must be registered to vote in Iowa, at least 17 years old, and a resident of the county in which they are working. Precinct election officials will also participate in a training session before Election Day to learn more about voting rules and setting up the venues.
Iowa FFA members and alumni who are interested in serving as a precinct election official can sign up at pollworker.iowa.gov, and a representative from the County Auditor’s office will follow up with more information. For more information about the 2020 election and how to get involved, visit their website.
If you are out of state, please visit your state’s polling website for more information. This is a valuable civics opportunity for young people all around the country!