Secretary of State: Kentucky Needs Poll Workers

FRANKFORT, Ky. — Secretary of State Michael Adams (R) is calling on Kentuckians to volunteer at polling places this November.


What You Need To Know

  • Secretary of State Michael Adams calls on Kentuckians to volunteer as poll workers.
  • Adams says the reason for so few polling locations in June is so few volunteers.
  • Those who want to volunteer can contact their local Democratic or Republican committees, county clerk.

“Like most Kentuckians, I want things to get back to normal – and that includes our elections. I want more robust in-person voting options than we had in June, but that is only possible if Kentuckians step up and volunteer to be poll workers,” said Adams.

According to a statement released from Adams’ office, the main reason there were so few voting locations in June was because so few people volunteered to be a poll worker. By law, each precinct voting location must have four poll workers, evenly split between registered Democrats and Republicans.

Adams said the poll worker shortage is a crisis that precedes the pandemic.

“Last year, before I was sworn in as Kentucky’s chief elections official, I testified to the General Assembly that we have a poll worker crisis – and that was before COVID-19,” Adams added. “We must find new poll workers, particularly younger people who are less at risk of harm from the coronavirus than the disproportionately elderly volunteers we usually have.”

Typically, Kentucky elections have roughly 3,700 voting locations and 15,000 poll workers. 

“If you’re a Republican who doesn’t want a vote-by-mail election in November, you need to step up and be a poll worker. If you’re a Democrat concerned about unintentional voter suppression caused by a paucity of voting locations, you need to step up and be a poll worker,” said Adams.

Kentucky voters can contact their local Democratic or Republican committees or county clerk to volunteer. Independent voters were permitted to serve as poll workers in the June primary, and Adams hopes to continue that in the fall.