The U.S. Army Voting Assistance Program

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

What is it?

The U.S. Army Voting Assistance Program informs and educates Soldiers and their eligible dependents on their right to vote. The goal is to encourage the Army community to participate in the nation’s voting process and know their vote will be counted no matter where they are stationed. Voting Assistance Officers (VAOs) world-wide, assist in this process to make registration and voting materials available to all eligible Army voters. Yet, it is the responsibility of voters to register, request an absentee ballot and cast their vote.

What has the Army done?

The Army has appointed VAOs to provide assistance to Soldiers, eligible family members and DA civilians. In addition, the Military Postal Service Agency (MPSA) has fielded a special ballot return label, which allows voters to track their completed ballot from their overseas location, all the way to their local election official. As part of this program, MPSA and the U.S. Postal Service also provide free express mail service for returning ballots during the period Sept. 1 through Nov. 2, 2014. This provides the fastest service possible, to ensure everyone has the opportunity to have their vote counted.

What efforts does the Army plan to continue in the future?

Since the adoption of the Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment (MOVE) Act, the Army has appointed Installation VAOs to each installation to assist the unit VAOs. This VAO team is available to inform our communities about the voting process and provide voter materials to eligible voters, including CONUS DA civilian personnel, who request voter information and guidance. This includes material on the voting process, requesting absentee ballots and mailing the completed ballots.

Why is this important to the Army?

With the constant demands faced by our Soldiers, families and civilian workforce, the Army is taking these important steps to ensure every eligible voter has the opportunity to exercise their constitutional right to vote. The voting process is a key element in our nation’s governmental process. The Army Voting Assistance Program provides our voters the resources necessary to exercise that right.

Resources:

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