Press Statement: ACLU of Georgia and the Georgia Youth Justice Coalition Praise Fulton County for Approving On-Campus Early Vote Locations
ATLANTA — Today, the Fulton County Board of Elections voted to establish five early voting locations on college and university campuses, including Georgia State (Atlanta and Alpharetta campuses), Georgia Tech, the Atlanta University Center (Morehouse campus), and Atlanta Metropolitan State College.
Fulton’s decision means that tens of thousands of students will have improved access to the ballot in the 2022 general election. In 2020, a year with record turnout, Fulton provided early voting on campus at three schools: Georgia Tech, Georgia State, and Atlanta Metropolitan. Plans for similar access to Atlanta University Center students were canceled when those campuses went fully virtual due to the pandemic.
“Fulton County deserves praise for what it did today,” said Vasu Abhiraman, Senior Policy Counsel and Deputy Policy & Advocacy Director at the ACLU of Georgia. “Fulton officials listened and responded to the concerns of students and the community. Now, Fulton will continue a great precedent for on-campus voting, while providing the highest standard of early voting access for its citizens overall. We hope all counties in Georgia follow Fulton’s lead on early voting.”
The Georgia Youth Justice Coalition (GYJC) leaders called Fulton’s decision a critical step towards removing barriers that prevent students from voting. GYJC is an advocacy group of college and high school students from across the state. “We’re proud and grateful that the Fulton Board of Elections listened to impacted voters like us and chose to expand early voting on five Fulton campuses. This is a win for students and for Georgia’s democracy,” said GYJC leaders.
The on-campus polling locations also provide students the opportunity to serve as poll workers at their schools, which they did at Georgia Tech and Georgia State in 2020.
Fulton’s action today opens 36 locations for the full 19-day early voting period and five campus locations that will each be open for two days.
The ACLU of Georgia and GYJC urge all Georgia counties to follow Fulton’s example and ensure that Georgia colleges and universities have on-site early voting in 2022.