COVID-19 Brings Changes to Voting

    1342
    A sample ballot is pictured in a 2020 DCBOE Voter Guide.

    Like everything else in the District, the 2020 elections will be affected by the outbreak of COVID-19. The District of Columbia Board of Elections (DCBOE) is encouraging all residents to request a mail-in ballot and vote by mail in the June 2 Primary Elections. Every eligible voter can request a vote by mail. This is especially important because DCBOE will not operate anywhere near the usual number of precincts, or voting places, on election day.

    For the 2020 June primary election, the usual 144 precincts will remain closed. Instead, DCBOE will operate the usual 15 Early Vote Centers and five additional, larger vote centers. These 20 voting places will be open from May 22 until primary election day June 2.

    Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. On election day polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Voting centers will be closed Monday, May 25 for Memorial Day.

    In light of the COVID-19 crisis, strict social distancing measures will be in place during line-up, registration or check-in and during actual voting at voter centers. Masks will be required to vote. DCBOE will also implement cleaning protocols on site. Same-day registration will still be available at these voting locations with a valid proof of residence, but DCBOE says these locations should be reserved for those unable to request a mail-in ballot.

    “These locations, while increasing in number, will adhere to CDC guidelines regarding COVID-19 and they should be reserved for those unable to request a mail-in ballot. It’s imperative that we protect our fellow citizens as well as the thousands of DCBOE volunteers and all of our employees,” said DCBOE spokesperson LaDawne White.

    The Board encourages ALL residents to request a mail-in ballot for the June Primary. Voters can request mail-in ballots:

    • online at https://www.vote4dc.com/ApplyInstructions/Absentee
    • via the DCBOE mobile app vote4dc
    • by calling the DCBOE at (202) 727-2525 or (202) 741-5283, or by calling TTY at 711
    • by fax at (202) 347-2648
    • or by mailing or dropping off in person a ballot request form to: DC Board of Elections, 1015 Half Street SE, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20003.

    Forms are available online at dcboe.org/Data-Resources-Forms/Forms-and-Resources/AbsenteeBallotRequestForm

    Starting May 8, DCBOE will send two forms and a postage-paid envelope in each Voter Guide. The guide is also available at dcboe.org/Elections/2020-Elections.