Seyfarth Synopsis: Looking
for ways to help seniors exercise their right to vote? Here
are a few suggestions.
With the presidential election right around the corner, many
people living in nursing homes, assisted living facilities,
long-term care facilities, or retirement communities may be
wondering exactly how they can have their voices heard at the
polls. Many senior citizens do not have the ability to drive to the
polls and may find it difficult to participate in the political
process because of various registration and identification
requirements. Even though turnout rates for seniors have risen over
the last decade, there is still much that senior facilities can do
to ensure that their residents' votes are counted.
Hosting debate watching events or political discussion
Providing transportation to polling locations
Familiarizing residents with the voting process
Posting reminders around the facility regarding voting dates
Another problem that many seniors face is obtaining knowledge of
the voter identification requirements for their state. Most states
require voters to show a non-expired state issued identification at
polling locations. Oftentimes, once senior citizens stop driving
they allow their driver's licenses to expire. Facilities can
assist their residents by helping them obtain state identification
cards from the local Department of Motor Vehicles and hosting
information sessions to inform residents about local voter ID
Along with informing residents about the voter ID laws in their
state, it is important for new residents to know about any
registration or address change deadlines. Many of these deadlines
are fast approaching. Websites such as Vote.org
provide easy-to-navigate charts that detail the requirements in
Many organizations, such as AARP and
National Consumer Voice, feature publications on their websites
that that can be used by facilities to implement the practices
mentioned above. The League of Women Voters also offers a
hotline (1-800-OUR-VOTE) that can be called on election day to help
anyone who experiences problems at the polling locations.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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