The mission of the Michigan Democratic Party Voter Protection Team is to protect voting rights and help elect Michigan Democrats up and down the ticket! We are recruiting volunteers in all areas of voter protection to ensure that voters can access a ballot and have their votes counted during the 2022 midterm elections.
Sign up for any of the following roles by filling out this Volunteer Interest Form.
Who can be a Voter Protection Volunteer?
- Any individual with an interest in assisting and advocating on behalf of voters, and combating voter suppression, is welcome to join our team.
- In order to be a Challenger, either at a polling place or an absentee ballot counting room, you do need to be registered to vote in Michigan. Out of state volunteers can serve in any of the other roles. If you are registered to vote in Michigan, you can be a Challenger anywhere in the state.
- You cannot be both a poll worker (hired by city/township clerks to help administer the election) and a poll challenger on Election Day. If you are planning to be a poll worker, we recommend you volunteer in one of our other roles, like Early Vote Observer, Hotline Staff, or Phone Bank Team, all of which will have available shifts prior to Election Day.
ELECTION DAY POLL CHALLENGERS
After being trained, Poll Challengers serve as our team’s eyes and ears on the ground at polling locations on Election Day. They observe the process and intervene with election officials as needed, to make sure that voters are able to cast a ballot that counts. Our Challengers do NOT challenge voters; rather, they advocate for voters. Poll Challengers must be registered to vote in Michigan and they receive credentials from the MDP. This is an in-person role that cannot be done remotely.
ABSENTEE BALLOT COUNTING BOARD CHALLENGERS
Some volunteers serve as Counting Board Challengers. After training, volunteers will be assigned to a counting room to observe the process, intervene with election officials as needed, and report any issues to the Voter Protection Team. Counting Board Challengers must be registered to vote in Michigan and they receive credentials from the MDP. This is an in-person role that cannot be done remotely.
EARLY VOTE OBSERVERS
After being trained, Early Vote Observers visit clerk’s offices periodically during the Early Voting period (40 days before Election Day) to make sure that absentee ballots are being issued upon request and that all relevant rules are being followed. This is an in-person role that cannot be done remotely.
Providing voters with accurate information is critical and is the primary task of our Hotline Volunteers. Volunteers will be trained on software that allows you to accept calls remotely and answer questions from voters across the state. They also do voter and volunteer outreach in their downtime. This role can be done remotely.
PHONE BANK TEAM – RECRUITMENT & CONFIRMATION
Members of the Phone Banker Team mainly do outreach to their fellow volunteers. They help us recruit volunteers to join our voter protection team by calling through lists of former volunteers. They also make confirmation calls to volunteers who are signed up for training sessions or volunteer shifts to confirm attendance and answer any questions that the volunteer may have. This role can be done remotely.
Cure Team members contact voters whose voted absentee ballots have been marked as rejected by their clerk. Reasons for rejection include missing signature, mismatched signature, or address change. Team members notify the voter of the need to cure their ballots, and instruct them on how to make sure their ballot will be counted. This role can be done remotely and is active during the month before Election Day.
POST-ELECTION COUNTY CANVASS OBSERVER
County Canvass Observers observe the county-level canvass and certification of votes that starts no later than the Thursday after Election Day in every county in the state, and report any issues to the Voter Protection Team. This role can be done remotely.
EARLY VOTE CAPTAIN
Early Vote Captains recruit and manage Early Vote Observers in their area while working together with the Voter Protection Team to learn early vote observing plans, help recruit, assign, and manage volunteer observers, and convey information to the Voter Protection Team.
Training Captains train other volunteers in various volunteer positions. They work with the Voter Protection Team to learn training protocols, assist with training sessions while learning the process, and eventually will run their own training sessions after gaining experience.
Hotline Managers train and manage volunteers during daily hotline shifts, assist the Voter Protection Team in running hotline shifts, and help volunteers answer voter questions and troubleshoot our technology.
PHONE BANK CAPTAIN
- Recruiting Captains manage the people who recruit other volunteers and volunteer leaders. They work with the Voter Protection Team to develop recruiting strategies, assist with phone banks and recruiting events while learning the process, and then run their own recruitment phone banks when they feel ready.
- Confirmation Captains manage the people who make phone calls to confirm that volunteers will attend the trainings and shifts that they’ve signed up for. They convey information (cancellations, etc.) to the Voter Protection Team as necessary.
CURE TEAM CAPTAIN
Cure Team Captains manage the volunteers who make phone calls to voters whose absentee ballots have been rejected and need to be “cured” in order to count.
Tech Captains assist volunteers with the technology that volunteers use, including DialPad (the software that allows hotline volunteers to answer hotline calls remotely), Slack, and LBJ (the website that Poll Challengers use to report issues).