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The City Needs Poll Workers. Here’s How You Can Apply And Make Up To $450

The Chicago Board of Election Commissioners says poll workers are critically needed ahead of the Nov. 8 general election.

With two weeks to go until Election Day, some neighborhoods in Chicago are facing a historic shortage in poll workers.
Julie Shapiro / DNAinfo
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CHICAGO — The city critically needs poll workers ahead of the Nov. 8 general election, according to election officials.

Election judges and coordinators operate polling stations and ensure people can vote. Election judges make up to $230 and election coordinators make up to $450 for Election Day.

Eligible people can apply to be an election judge or coordinator online.

The Chicago Board of Election Commissioners will equip election judges with masks, gloves, screen wipes and other disinfectant supplies. 

What you need to know:

Election Judges

  • Judges must be U.S. citizens. If they are 18 or older, they must be registered voters in Cook County.
  • Judges must be able to speak, read and write in English.
  • The Board of Elections encourages bilingual judges — especially those who speak Spanish, Chinese, Hindi, Polish, Korean or Tagalog — to apply right away.
  • High school and college students can also apply.

More information on becoming an election judge is available online here.

Election judges’ responsibilities Include:

  • Arriving to the voting site 5 a.m. on Election Day to set up.
  • Opening the polls at 6 a.m.
  • Issuing the correct ballots to each voter and helping voters with registration and other questions through 7 p.m.
  • Completing reports after polls close.

The full list of requirements for election judges is listed on the application here.

Election Coordinators

  • Coordinators must be U.S. citizens. If they are 18 or older, they must be registered voters in Cook County.
  • Coordinators must have be able to speak and understand English.
  • Coordinators must have expertise in the operation, maintenance and proper use of a wide range of computer technologies.
  •  Coordinators must have a cellphone available for making and receiving calls and text messages on Election Day.
  • Coordinators have to complete all required training courses and successfully pass the examination after each class.
  • High school and college students can also apply.

The full list of election coordinator requirements is online here.

Election coordinators’ responsibilities include:

  • Ensuring the polling place is accessible to voters with disabilities by following an accessibility guideline/check-off list.
  • Serving all day on Election Day from 5 a.m. until all work is completed after the polls close and until election judges have secured their materials and are about to leave to deliver those materials to the receiving station.
  • Having extensive knowledge of the Election Day registration procedures and directing the voter-registration activities on the e-poll book in the precinct.
  • Assisting election judges with Election Day processes and procedures.
  • Troubleshooting equipment problems and making minor repairs, such as changing the paper tape rolls.
  • Assisting election judges with completing polling place closing paperwork

The full list of election coordinator responsibilities and more information is online.

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