(TRENTON) – Poll workers are critical toward ensuring all eligible voters are able to cast their ballots. To give more people the opportunity for civic engagement, Assembly Democrats Raj Mukherji (D-Hudson) and Valerie Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen) sponsor legislation passed Monday by the Assembly Labor Committee to permit New Jersey residents between the ages of 16 and 18 to be employed as election workers.
Under the bill (A-4906), those between the ages of 16 and 18 can be employed between the hours of 5:30 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. on a day that an election is held. Many states have expanded their laws to allow youth poll workers to ensure those who are disabled or elderly can vote properly.
Upon committee approval of the legislation, Mukherji and Vainieri Huttle issued the following joint statement:
“Becoming involved in the electoral process at a younger age would increase civic engagement and instill the importance of statewide and federal elections. It has been clear that more people are participating in elections and we want to continue to grow political interest in our younger generations.”
“This bill will ensure eligible voters who are elderly or may have a disability can still cast their ballots. With such an emphasis on technology, those who are 16-18 can learn how to use electronic poll books and greatly help instruct eligible voters on any difficulties they may face.”