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062414 Voting Problems Memo (1)

062414 Voting Problems Memo (1)

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Published by Celeste Katz
062414 Voting Problems Memo (1)
062414 Voting Problems Memo (1)

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Published by: Celeste Katz on Jun 24, 2014
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06/24/2014

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Memorandum RE: Voting Irregularities in NY-13 To: Interested Parties From: Espaillat for Congress Date: June 24, 2014
During the 2012 primary, the 13
th
 District was plagued by voting irregularities that included: Insufficient numbers of Spanish-speaking poll workers; Last-minute reassignments of Spanish-speaking poll workers from Washington Heights to other areas; Prime voters in Washington Heights forced to use provisional paper ballots that were not immediately counted  because their names were missing from enrolled voter lists; And incomplete election-night reporting, resulting from unreported results from heavily-Dominican poll sites. With the widespread voting problems in 2012, we wanted to make sure you were aware of them in advance of
today‟s election.
If you have media inquiries on this topic, please contact Lis Smith at elisabethlsmith@gmail.com  Background is below.
2012 Congressional Primary Was Marred by Voting Irregularities
 
BOE Failed to Staff Spanish Language Translators.
 
“LatinoJustice PRLDEF, an advocacy group, says it
found that the board transferred an oddly high number of bilingual poll workers to other precincts that day. Mr. Espaillat says
his family members arrived at the polls to find their names not in the election books.” [New York
Times, 07/02/2012] 
Number of Translators Was Reduced Despite Expected High Turnout.
 
“Spanish interpreters were sharply
reduced throughout Washington Heights, Morillo said, even though the board knew to expect a surge of
Hispanic voters backing Espaillat, who is Dominican.” [Daily News 
Concerns About Adequate Translators, Poll Site Moves Continue in 2014 2014 Washington Heights Poll Site Moves and Translator Shortage Set to Once Again Disrupt Turnout.
 
“So what has been the solution from the city‟s notoriously inept Board of Elections? It has
inexplicably reduced the number of Spanish interpreters by nearly 20% this year. In northern Manhattan, which comprises the bulk of the congressional district, it has assigned 103 Spanish language interpreters to be on duty, one for each of its 103 polling sites. Two years ago, 127 Spanish interpreters were spread out among 134  polling sites, a Daily News review of polling assignments for that primary found. The board, in other words, consolidated voting districts and sharply reduced polling sites, and it then used that consolidation to justify cuts
in interpreters. But the number of registered voters has remained the same. So if there weren‟t s
ufficient interpreters two years ago, things are likely to get worse this time. [Daily News, 06/19/2014] 
De Blasio Criticized BOE Performance in 2012 Primary
 
Then-
Public Advocate Bill de Blasio Condemned BOE’s Improprieties.
 
“In
a letter to the BOE, Mr. de
Blasio writes, „
I am disturbed by reports that may point to a larger set of election administration issues in our
city.‟”
 [New York Observer, 07/03/2012] 
Voting Barriers Led to Use of Paper Ballots
 
Latino Voters in Espaillat’s
 Base Were Missing from BOE Lists, Requiring Them to Use of Provisional

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