HYDE PARK — A group of Hyde Park neighbors has organized a voter registration drive to be held at the Silver Room and residential buildings Sept. 22.
Volunteers with Neighbors Who Vote will set up a table 2-6 p.m. outside the store at 1506 E. 53rd St., weather permitting.
In addition to voter registration assistance, attendees can receive applications for mail-in ballots and information about how to vote safely.
“If you have moved, you definitely have to register again,” said Julia Kline, deputy voter registrar for the Illinois Board of Elections and a Neighbors Who Vote organizer. “If you have voted before in the state of Illinois, no ID is required to vote. If it’s your first time voting in Illinois, you will need to provide some kind of verification of your identity.”
Guidelines on when voters need to present identification — and a list of acceptable forms of ID — are available on the Cook County Clerk’s website.
That same day, volunteers will also visit the lobbies of nearly a dozen residential buildings. Organizers did not share the locations, as they “aren’t really open to the public” in an effort to limit the spread of coronavirus.
More volunteers are needed to help residents fill out registration forms; all volunteers must wear masks, Kline said.
“We need more volunteers than we have right now to do all of [the drives] on the 22nd,” Kline said. If too few volunteers sign up, drives at some residential buildings will be rescheduled.
Volunteers and neighbors interested in setting up a registration drive at their building of 100 residents or more can email the group at NWVoteChicago@gmail.com.
Local census workers will be on hand at the Hyde Park drives to ensure residents fill out the 2020 Census, which has a Sept. 30 deadline.
The registration drives are held in collaboration with the League of Women Voters, Indivisible Chicago, Brave Space Alliance and Rainbow/PUSH.
Neighbors Who Vote will focus on voter registration efforts through September, before switching to a “get out the vote” initiative, Kline said. In October, volunteers will focus on “urging people to order a mail-in ballot and cast that ballot [in the mail] or deposit it in a drop box.”
Voter registration by mail and in-person ends Oct. 6, and online voter registration ends 11:59 p.m. Oct. 18. However, a “grace period” allows voters to register and vote until Nov. 2.
Grace period voters must register and vote in person at one of the Cook County Clerk’s designated grace period locations. They must bring two pieces of identification to register — one with a current address — and cast their ballot immediately after registering to vote.
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