COVID-19 Safety and election procedures discussed
State and local election officials are constantly brainstorming ways to help uphold the integrity of elections while focusing on the wellbeing of citizens. To ensure voting in person on Election Day is as safe and secure as possible, the Mississippi Secretary of State’s Office is providing the following to every county in the state:
• Personal protective equipment (PPE): Every poll manager will be provided with a mask, face shield, and gloves to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
• Hand sanitizer for each polling place.
• Masks for voters who do not bring their own to the polling place and wish to wear a mask while voting. Please note that voters are not required to wear a mask, and voters cannot be turned away or denied the right to vote if not wearing a mask.
• Single-use pens and/or styluses, so voters can cast a ballot without touching a previously-used marking device. Voters may take the pen or stylus as they leave the polling place or place the item in a box to be sanitized for future use.
• Disinfectant supplies for sanitizing the polling place.
During the 2020 legislative session, the State legislature passed House Bill 1789, which allows for at least one additional poll manager in each polling place to be hired specifically to sanitize the polling place and assist with social distancing safety protocols.
Individual counties may purchase additional supplies and sanitizing equipment to protect both election officials and voters, such as sneeze guards/protective barriers, and other items deemed essential by the county.
For more information, visit www.sos.ms.gov.