Election Protection Across New England
Lawyers for Civil Rights Protects the Vote Across New England
“Election Protection” Efforts Underway as Voters Head to the Polls
With our community partners, Lawyers for Civil Rights (LCR) is spearheading non-partisan Election Protection efforts in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine. As people navigate election laws, we will ensure that all eligible voters have the resources necessary to cast their ballot by Election Day, November 8.
This election cycle will be particularly engaging in Massachusetts with the roll out of the VOTES Act. Amidst the pandemic, Massachusetts enacted several temporary adjustments to its voting laws – including no excuse vote-by-mail (VBM) – to keep voters safe. Those changes made voting easier and led to record breaking voter turnout in 2020. Thanks to LCR’s work alongside the Election Modernization Coalition, the VOTES Act has permanently codified many of the most voter-friendly changes.
In Massachusetts, the VOTES Act provides for:
- A later voter registration deadline of 10 days before Election Day (this year’s registration deadline is October 29);
- An expanded early voting period, including guaranteed weekend voting hours (this year’s early voting period runs from October 22-November 4);
- No excuse vote-by-mail for voters who submit applications as outlined by the Secretary of State’s Office (this year’s application deadline is November 1); and
- Automatic voter registration during certain transactions with the state such as when an eligible voter applies for or renews a driver’s license.
These changes benefit Massachusetts voters by creating more options and opportunities to vote. To help voters understand the new law, LCR will be hosting VOTES Act trainings for community groups between now and Election Day.
LCR also stands ready to assist voters across New England and our toll-free Election Protection hotline, 866-OUR-VOTE, is now open. Through Election Day, any voter with questions or concerns can call for live support and technical assistance. For help in languages other than English, voters can call: 888-VE-Y-VOTA (Spanish); 888-API-VOTE (Asian languages); or 844-YALLA-US (Arabic). This hotline is run in collaboration with the national Lawyers’ Committee and our community partners.
On Election Day, LCR will be running an Election Protection call center to support voters in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, and Maine with timely and accurate voting assistance. LCR staff will also be working as long as polls are open to identify issues on the ground and respond in real-time.
LCR and its call center partner, WilmerHale, have assembled an A-list team of Election Protection volunteers, including many attorneys from WilmerHale and Ropes & Gray. We are extremely grateful to those who have volunteered for this critical effort. Together, we will work tirelessly to protect voters and equal access to the ballot box.