KNOW YOUR OPTIONS TO CAST YOUR VOTE
Written by Kim Tenure, Associate Director of I/DD Policy
In Colorado, there are different ways that you can vote, so it is important to make a plan. Elections are conducted by your county, so there may be some small differences depending on which county you vote in.
Watch this short video that provides a step-by-step guide on casting your vote:
As discussed in the video, there are several ways to make your vote count, including:
In-person Voting Centers
You can visit a polling place in-person. The Secretary of State has worked with counties and other state offices to make sure that polling places are equipped with masks and other personal protective equipment (PPE). Masks will be required for staff and election judges. Voters are encouraged to wear masks as well. Early in-person voting begins on October 19th. You can register and vote in person until Tuesday, November 3 (Election Day!) until 7pm. Keep in mind, it is difficult to know how long you may have to wait in line.
To find your polling place, visit the election page for your county or visit govotecolorado.gov.
If you have a disability, you can use assistive technology and vote online. For more information on accessible voting, you can visit the Secretary of State’s Accessible Voting site.
After filling out your ballot, you must print and sign the accessible ballot application. Both the ballot and the application must be returned in an envelope (you can use any envelope or the one that was mailed to you with your paper ballot). You can return your ballot to a polling center, dropbox or through the mail.
Mail-in Ballots & Dropboxes
In 2014, long before the COVID-19 pandemic, Colorado introduced mail-in ballots. In doing so, all registered voters now receive a ballot in the mail and can choose to vote in person at a polling place, return their ballot via mail, or drop it in a dropbox.
If you want to mail your ballot in, it is important to make sure to put at least one stamp on the ballot. Remember, as long as you put one stamp on your ballot, by State and Federal law, the USPS delivers those ballots to the counties and the counties will cover any overages.
There are over 350 dropboxes in Colorado! They are located throughout our counties. Some of them are even drive up so you don’t even have to get out of your car. To find your polling place, visit the election page for your county or visit govotecolorado.gov. Dropboxes are under 24-hour surveillance and are emptied by a bi-partisan team.
If you don’t receive your ballot or have specific questions, here are links to the election pages for the counties Developmental Pathways serves:
What Happens to Your Ballot?
You can track your ballot after you drop it in the mail to make sure it’s received. Remember, ballots must be received by Election day; postmark dates do not count, which is why it is important to make a plan to vote! There has been a lot of media coverage around the postal service and elections. If you are concerned, utilizing a dropbox or voting in-person may give you more confidence.
Arapahoe County Elections created this great graphic to help you understand the process. Many counties have also created videos to help you better understand the life cycle of a ballot.
- Adams County Ballot Life Cycle (with Spanish subtitles)
- Arapahoe County Ballot Life Cycle
- Douglas County Ballot Life Cycle
If you want a behind the scenes tour of ballot processing, join Arapahoe County Deputy Director Peg Perl in this 23 minute video.
Contact Kim if you have any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org