COVID-19 positive patients can now vote with absentee ballots

COVID-19 positive patients can now vote with absentee ballots
(Source: KSLA)

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The Alabama Attorney General is making sure people who recently tested positive for COVID-19 can still vote.

Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill said an emergency absentee ballot is for any voter who needs emergency treatment from a doctor and COVID-19 patients now qualify.

Merrill said voters who need an emergency absentee ballot have to have tested positive for COVID-19 on or after October 29. Voters need a doctor’s note and proof of positive in order to request an application. Merrill said if you can’t make it into the circuit clerk’s offices, someone else can turn in the application or ballot for you.

“You need to take an indicator from the physician to the circuit clerk’s office,” Merrill said. "Show them that you had tested positive for the Coronavirus and then submit an emergency application to vote absentee. Then, they would give you an absentee ballot and then you can vote an emergency absentee ballot for the November 3rd general election.”

The emergency absentee application must be completed and turned in by noon on Election Day.

Read Merrill’s full statement below:

Alabama voters have had more than two months to apply for and cast an absentee ballot. After extending the opportunity for anyone who is concerned about COVID-19 to cast an absentee ballot, we have already witnessed record absentee participation. Prior to October 29, the deadline to apply for an absentee ballot, we have been encouraging all Alabama voters who have tested positive for COVID-19 or believe they may have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 to go ahead and make application for and vote an absentee ballot.

Now that the deadline has passed, if a voter has tested positive for COVID-19 on or after the deadline of October 29, that voter may apply for an emergency absentee ballot. Emergency applications can be downloaded on our website or obtained through contacting the county’s absentee election manager. Upon receiving the signature of the voter’s physician on or attached to the application, these individuals may designate another person to deliver his or her application and absentee ballot.

We have worked especially hard to see that voters have the ability to participate in safe, secure, and sanitary elections. It is incumbent on voters to follow best practices as recommended by the CDC to ensure safe voting is observed on November 3.

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