Five Minute Friday has come and gone, and once again no blog written by me; BUT today I’m using the word of the day: HERE.
This is my precinct where I serve as a poll officer. I arrived at 6:00 AM with four other workers and set up all the machines (only two!), the county data bases, printers, signs, and paperwork required to insure a fair election.
I had no idea how exhausting this job could be! But it was also rewarding. This little precinct stayed busy with a few times of the day when voters waited in a short line to vote. Luckily for me, only three voters required some added paperwork. The possibilities of exceptions to the requirement of a voter’s picture ID require several pages of instructions and color-coded paperwork. My three exceptions were in our database but had not voted in a long time.
We helped those with physical limitations manage to climb the three steps into our voting room. What a privilege to help them vote! We lifted strollers with babies accompanying mamas as they voted.
This opportunity to vote for a new mayor and council members involved only our city. No senators or presidents in this election. The work involved to conduct an election for our Metro (city and county combined) is no small feat, just as the effort of some of our voters to get to the polls is no small feat.
When the polls closed at 7:00 P.M. we ran a copy of the results of our precinct and posted it to the door. Then we packed up my car with all the equipment and material so I could deliver it to the Election Commission. I wish I had video of that experience to show you!
Workers from 160 voting precincts lined up in their cars waiting to be unloaded. A flurry of workers unloaded each trunk, machines on pallets and shrink wrapped, signs bunched and shrink wrapped. Then I carried the critical documents and the PEB (recorded votes from the machines) into a beehive of a warehouse – each person with a specific role to receive materials.
I am amazed at how smoothly everything goes. My security blanket all day was the cell phone assigned to me; a phone bank of personnel were available to answer every question. I made several calls in the morning, but by afternoon I had no more questions.
I am thankful for
- privilege of voting without fear, without influence, without coercion
- citizens taking time from a busy day to vote
- volunteers keeping watch over polls
- an opportunity to serve my community