AARP encouraging seniors to vote safely through 'Protect Voters 50+' initiative

'Protect Voters 50+' is aimed at making older adults aware of their voting options.
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- With just under two weeks until Election Day, AARP is working to make sure that older adults not only get out the vote, but have all the information they need to vote safely amid COVID-19.

AARP's latest initiative, 'Protect Voters 50+,' is aimed at making older adults aware of their voting options.

"We just are asking people to think about it, plan the way that's going to make you feel safest, but then make sure you do exercise your right to vote," said Joanne Grossi, Pennsylvania State President of AARP.

Grossi says the organization conducted a poll of older adults in late September and found out the issues most important to them include Medicare, Social Security and lowering prescription drug costs.

"And so we need candidates to care about these programs," explains Grossi.

For those who want to vote in person on November 3, Grossi says they can expect to find social distancing in place and poll workers wearing masks and gloves.

If you vote by mail, October 27 is the deadline for requesting your ballot. It must be postmarked by November 3 and you can track it online.

"There's a barcode on the back of every envelope so you can actually follow your ballot," says Grossi. "It's a great way to feel secure that your vote's actually been received."

You can also hand-deliver your mail-in ballot. There are drop boxes and satellite elections offices across Pennsylvania.

Grossi says at the satellite election offices, "you can request a mail-in ballot, complete it right there and turn in the ballot all in one stop."

Be sure to read the instructions carefully and use the secrecy envelope.

Grossi says that's a necessary step in order to avoid a 'naked' ballot. Voters need to utilize both envelopes that come with the mail-in ballot for their vote to count. "Put it in the first envelope, seal it. Then put it in the outside envelope, seal it. Sign it and date it," explains Grossi.

However you decide to vote, Grossi wants older adults to feel confident about the process.

"They can do it safely," she said.

AARP has put together voting guides for each state as an additional tool for older adults.

For more information, visit:

AARP: How to Vote in Pennsylvania
AARP: State Voting Guides
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