Don’t let COVID-19 silence you: Voting in 2020

Three sets of hands hold up signs that say, "Vote," "Your voice, your vote," and "Vote for Children's Health."
Massachusetts has made it easier for its citizens to vote in the 2020 elections. (Image: Adobe Stock, Illustration: Patrick Bibbins, Boston Children's)

Voting is your right and your way to make a difference in children’s lives. When you cast your vote, you’re letting elected officials know where you stand on issues such as access to health care, behavioral health, and child nutrition programs.

In this spirit of civic engagement, Boston Children’s Hospital encourages all eligible citizens to make their voices heard in the voting booth this year.

2020 Massachusetts voters’ guide

As with grocery shopping and visiting friends, COVID-19 will change the way people vote this fall. Fortunately, Massachusetts has put several measures in place to reduce risks and make it easier for its citizens to vote.

Massachusetts Election Dates
Primary election: September 1
Early primary voting: August 22-28
General election: November 3
Early general election voting: October 17-30
Important dates for Massachusetts voters

Here’s what you need to know about voting in 2020.

Registering to vote

If you’re not already a registered voter, or aren’t sure if you are, you can look up your status and register online. You can also register by mail or in person at any city or town hall in the state.

If you renewed your driver’s license or applied for MassHealth benefits this year, you may already be registered. These and other transactions with the Registry of Motor Vehicles, MassHealth, or the Commonwealth Health Connector now include the option to register to vote automatically.

Voter registration deadlines
August 22 to vote in the state primary election
October 24 to vote in the general election
Massachusetts voters can register to vote online, by mail, or in person.

Learn more about registering to vote in Massachusetts.

Voting by mail

Massachusetts has taken several steps to reduce crowd sizes and reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission at polling places. One of them is voting by mail. A Massachusetts law passed earlier this year allows qualified state residents to cast their votes by mail. Vote-by-mail applications were sent to all registered voters in the state on July 1. 

If you haven’t received an application, or if you registered to vote after July 1, you can request a vote-by-mail application online.

Be sure to return your application as soon as possible. Your local election office must receive your application at least four business days before the election so they can mail you a ballot and you can return it in time to be counted.

Your local election office must receive your vote-by-mail application by:
August 26 to vote in the state and general election
October 28 to vote in the general election
To vote by mail, first mail in your application.

Voting early

To further reduce the number of voters gathered at any given time, Massachusetts has extended its early voting options for the 2020 elections. Early voting will take place for seven days before the state primary and for 14 days before the general election.

Early voting dates
August 22-28 for the state primary election
October 17-30 for the general election
Avoid crowds, vote early.

You can vote early in person or by mail. Learn more about early voting in Massachusetts.  

Massachusetts voting resources

The Massachusetts Elections Division provides up-to-date resources for Massachusetts voters. You can look up your status as a registered voter (active or inactive), register to vote if you’re not already registered, and find information about your options for voting this year.

To get involved in Boston Children’s voter registration efforts, email the Children’s Advocacy Network.

Get answers about Boston Children’s response to COVID-19 and Children’s Advocacy Network.

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