State Initiative Aims to Recruit Lawyers to Serve as Poll Workers
COLUMBUS, Ohio – In an effort to recruit new poll workers as part of the Ohio Secretary of State’s Ready for November initiative, the Ohio Supreme Court has issued an order allowing attorneys to earn continuing education credits for serving as precinct officials.
“Safe and accessible in-person voting is essential, and that requires large numbers of dedicated poll workers who will deliver accurate, accessible, secure, elections for their fellow Ohioans,” said Secretary of State Frank LaRose in a statement. “The smart, hard-working, patriotic men and women who practice law in our state are ideally suited for this crucial public service.”
The 88 county Boards of Elections typically rely on more than 35,000 volunteers to operate polling places and help voters cast ballots. More than 65% of those volunteers are over the age of 61, an age group that is particularly vulnerable to the coronavirus.
Because of the skills they’ve acquired in their profession, Ohio’s 49,000 licensed attorneys are “ideally suited to serve our communities,” LaRose said. Practicing attorneys are required to complete 24 hours of continuing education every two years.
“Ohio attorneys have a long record of public service,” said Ohio Supreme Court Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor. “I can think of no greater opportunity for lawyers in Ohio to give back to our state than to get involved on election day and help fill the urgent need for poll workers.”
Those interested in serving as precinct officials can register to become a poll worker at VoteOhio.gov/defenddemocracy.
Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.