Poll Worker FAQ

What is a poll worker?
A poll worker is a temporary worker for the Shelby County Election Commission who works on Election Day.
Arlington Poll Workers Team
What are the job assignments?
There are four potential job assignments.
  1. Officer – The officer leads a precinct team and supports the other poll worker positions.
  2. Machine Operator – The Machine Operator assists voters at the voting machine.
  3. Registrar – The registrar operates the Electronic Poll Books and verifies voters before sending them to the voting machines.
  4. Paperwork Clerk - This registrar has had additional training and assists voters who needs to change their address or vote using a provisional ballot.
How are poll workers selected?
Each polling location is staffed according to need - we try to place poll workers in or near their home precinct. Poll workers are divided into political parties based on the party declaration on their application and/or primary voting history. An equal number of workers from each political party is assigned to each polling place.
 
How much will I be paid for attending training?  
Poll workers are paid $30 for a mandatory three hour training class and must work on Election Day to get paid for training. 
 
How will I find out where and when I work on Election Day?
Our office will call and ask about your availability, assign you to a polling location, and schedule you for a training class. You will then receive an appointment letter confirming your assignment. 
 
What should I wear on Election Day? 
Poll workers should dress in business casual clothing.  Ripped or dirty clothing is not acceptable.  No sweatpants, sweatshirts, flip-flops or blue jeans.  Polling places can vary in temperature, so we recommend layers.  Poll workers may not wear any clothing that supports or opposes a political party, candidate, or ballot question.
 
What should I plan for breakfast, lunch, and dinner on Election Day?
We recommend that you bring food and beverages for the entire day;  once you are sworn in, you will not be allowed to leave the polling place.
 
Will I receive a break while working?
The Officer will allow for breaks but the timing will depend upon the flow of voters.
 
How much will I get paid for working on Election Day?
Officers have additional responsibilities, so they are paid $180 plus $30 for training.
All other positions pay $160 plus $30 for training.
One poll worker of the opposite party will be asked to accompany the officer to the turn-in location; this person will be paid an additional $10.
 
Do I have to attend training?
Training is required under state law.  Poll workers must attend training to be eligible to work. A person who does not attend training will be ineligible to work regardless of whether he/she has previously attended training.
 
Will I be able to vote on Election Day?
It is recommended that all poll workers vote during the Early Voting period. Only poll workers who are assigned to their home precinct will be able to vote on Election Day.
 
What if I am late to my training class?
If you are more than 15 minutes late, you will be rescheduled.
 
May I use my cell phone on Election Day?
You may use your cell phone during your breaks and lunch time only. Cell phones should be turned off the rest of the time.  An emergency number will be provided should someone need to contact you on Election Day.
 
When will I be paid for working on Election Day?
You will receive a check in the mail approximately three weeks after the election.
 
Why do you need to know my political party?
The state requires party balance at all polling sites. We staff an equal number of Democratic and Republican poll workers at each site.
 
 

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