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Become a Poll Worker

Be a champion of democracy! Become a poll worker in Pennsylvania.

Elections in Pennsylvania are made possible by thousands of regular citizens serving as poll workers across the Commonwealth. We all depend on responsible workers to run smooth elections. Get involved today!


How to Become a Poll Worker

  1.  If you are interested in becoming a poll worker, fill out the Poll Worker Interest Form.

  2.  After you submit the form, your county's election office will contact you. 

  3.  You may reach out to the election office to follow up. You can find the contact information on the Contact Your Election Officials page. 

In general, you must be registered to vote in the county where you wish to work. (Exceptions exist for 17-year-old high school students, who must meet additional requirements. High school students should contact their county election office for more information.)

Additionally, government officials and government employees are not allowed to serve as poll workers. Exceptions exist for district judges, notaries public, and members of the Pennsylvania National Guard. Likewise, you are generally not allowed to serve if your name appears on the ballot. 

Poll workers generally work for the entire day on election day, from before the time the polls open at 7:00 am, until after the polls close at 8:00 pm.

Counties train poll workers on their election day duties.

All poll workers are paid for their time on election day.


Poll Worker Positions

Judge of Elections, Majority Inspector, and Minority Inspector

  • These three positions make up the local election board in each precinct. 
  • The judge of elections is the person in charge at the polling place. 
  • The judge of elections and the majority and minority inspectors work together to manage the polling place, keep track of the number of voters, and make sure that the returns are delivered to the county election office at the end of the day. 
  • These positions are filled during municipal elections every four years. The last time these elections took place was 2017, and the next time will be in 2021. 
  • When the positions are vacant, someone is appointed to the job.

Clerk and Machine Inspector (also known as Machine Operator)

  • These workers support the local election board. They are supervised by the judge of elections.
  • Clerks and machine inspectors help check-in voters, manage the lines, and make sure voters know where to go at each step in the voting process. 
  • Unlike the elected positions, these positions are always filled by appointment.


Poll Worker Recruitment

The Pennsylvania Department of State would like your help recruiting poll workers to serve on Election Day. PA counties need dependable workers who reflect the diversity of the communities they serve to step up to the plate. You can help by recruiting members of your community on social media, with print posters and flyers, and via electronic communications.

Download the Poll Worker Recruitment Toolkit

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