Voter suppression has always been a tool to white supremacy. Let’s take back our power. Voting can be confusing af, we know. So we’re here to break it down for you. Get all the info you need to vote in the upcoming elections.
Are you registered to vote where you normally live?
Let’s start here. Normally is italicized here because we want to emphasize how these upcoming elections are more than unique considering the pandemic. We know so many people, especially young, college students are staying with family during this time which may happen to be away from the county the school is. Being registered around where your normally live is important because this is the space that impacts you most (and it’s also a tool we can use later.) So request a voter registration card to be mailed to you and mail it to your elections office by the deadline.
Okay, so when do I need to register by?
The last day to register to vote for the November election is October 5. Get your VR card here or put on your mask and go to your elections office to register. SHARE THE KNOWLEDGE.
Vote by Mail
If you’ve been keeping up, (which gosh this is our job and we were still struggling to do so) you know that Texas has been in a long, drawn-out tennis match for vote by mail. It was allowed. Then it wasn’t. Then it was allowed. Then it wasn’t. And so forth. Currently, Texas Supreme Court ruled that fear of contracting of COVID-19 was not a valid reason to check the disability box and apply for absentee ballot. But, many of you are probably still eligible for an absentee ballot. Let’s discuss:
Who is eligible for a mail-in ballot?
According to the Texas Secretary of State website, you are eligible to vote by mail if:
- 65 years or older
- out of the county on election day and during the period for early voting by personal appearance
- be confined in jail, but otherwise eligible
All important info for you to know, but the out of county on election day one is what we are going to focus on for our following. The pandemic has many college students living at home, perhaps out of the county where their school is and where they are registered to vote in. Here’s your in! You can apply for a mail-in ballot on these terms. Find the application on the unfortunately acronymed Texas SOS website.
Mail-in Ballot deadlines pls?
Got you! The deadline to apply for a mail-in ballot for the November election is October 23. When you receive your ballot, make sure to mail it to your county’s election office by Election Day November 3.
Going to the polls during a pandemic – HELP?
Because of everything said above, we know there’s still a LARGE chunk of people who are being ignored. We get it, but we must do all that we can to protect ourselves and our communities. There’s a global pandemic outside and elections are still happening. Who let us? Honestly, counties are handling the situation differently some have increased their budgets to include more supplies for mail-in ballots and for cleaning supplies and storage to make polling locations safer. Some are not accounting for this. (Go girl give us nothing!)
Please utilize the early voting period! You will experience less wait times and person-to-person contact since voting is spread throughout this time and less people know about it. Wear your mask, wear gloves, bring hand sanitizer, bring your own pen, keep your distance, and utilize curbside voting if eligible.
- Early voting period for November election: Oct. 13-30
Although we wish the state could have done more for you, sadly so many will still have to choose between their health and their vote come Election Day. Spread the word on absentee ballots to as many people who may eligible as you can. If you choose to go to the polls, once again, wear your mask, wear gloves, bring hand sanitizer, bring your own pen, and keep your distance. At polling locations, this may all be difficult, but we must do our best!
- November Election Day: Nov. 3
Ready to head to the polls? Make sure to check out the candidates platforms first!
Obviously, there’s more to voting then checking the box. Take some time to check out VOTE411.org to compare your local candidates! Happy and safe voting, y’all!