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Ahead of election, clerk's office has more poll workers than usual

Hoping to get 2,000 poll workers for November, Marion County already has over 2,300.

INDIANAPOLIS — After concerns about coronavirus caused some Marion County poll workers to stay home during the June primary, the clerks’ office immediately began recruiting workers to avoid a similar situation in November.

Hoping to get 2,000 poll workers, they already have over 2,300.    

“I just realize how important the effort that goes on in those polling stations are,” said Jackie Diaz, 67. 

Diaz has worked as a poll inspector in Marion County for the last four years after retiring from banking. 

“I thought this is an opportunity to give back to my community in that aspect, by being part of the voting process," Diaz said.

As she did in the primary, Diaz says she is sitting out the general election.

“The number one thing is the pandemic," she said. "Being my age, being one of the reasons that the pandemic has been hitting the senior set quite a bit.” 

Fewer workers meant fewer voting locations and longer lines in June.  

“I’ve voted since I was 18, but I’ve never committed to taking off work and actually working the polls,” said ZeNai Brooks. 

And that’s what Brooks and her husband Darrell plan to do this year, after experiencing the long lines in June. 

“We just decided we need to get in the game and we need to be a body to help,” Brooks explained, saying she has recruited others interested in doing the same.   

According to the clerk’s office, they have more poll workers in the 31-40 age range, like Brooks, than ever before.

“I just feel like this is so important for us to engage in,” Brooks added. 

Diaz said she will miss being part of it. 

“The opportunity to serve my community is something that’s really big for me,” Diaz said. 

She’s said she's glad to see other folks stepping up to the plate so there’s not a void, even during a pandemic. 

“It’s really encouraging to see so many young people get involved in that side of it,” said Diaz. 

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