Orr announces voter rights initiatives

March 7, 2002
Press Release

Cook County Clerk David Orr unveiled a countywide "Election Protection" program today aimed at familiarizing voters with their legal and constitutional rights before the March 19 primary election.

"My office is committed to protecting and preserving the right to vote, which is fundamental to conducting fair and honest elections," Orr said. "Voters need to know their rights and responsibilities to help safeguard against any problems that could result in disenfranchisement or intimidation at the polls."

Orr has issued a 10-point Voters’ Bill of Rights (see attachment), a component of his Voter Education effort that includes dozens of community and civic organizations, including the League of Women Voters and members of both the Democratic and Republican parties.

To raise awareness, the Clerk’s office intends to issue more than 200,000 how-to-vote guides to organizations, churches, schools and political campaigns. A Voter Instruction Guide will also be mailed to every voting household in Cook County before the primary election. A bilingual version of the Voters’ Bill of Rights will appear in both brochures.

A Voters’ Bill of Rights poster will be posted in each of the more than 5,000 precincts in Chicago and suburban Cook County during the primary and future elections.

In addition to the Bill of Rights, Orr’s office intends to step up precinct-level monitoring of polling place operations and provide legal assistance for voters on Election Day. The Clerk’s office has also enhanced its election judge training to emphasize voters’ rights and to provide assistance to voters who need help.

For more information, call the Elections Department at (312) 603-0906.