Today, Aug. 4, is primary election day in Michigan, when congressional and local primary races will be decided for the November ballot. Some Detroit voters headed to the polls today are finding that their precincts aren’t open.
“I’ve been voting for years right here, and I saw the area closed. That was a pretty big surprise. But fortunately, I was determined to vote.” — Ronald Seaberry, resident
Some voters say they were notified by letter. Others have said they didn’t find out their precinct was closed until they showed up to vote.
“I’ve been voting for years right here, and I saw the area closed. That was a pretty big surprise.” said Ronald Seaberry, a voter who spoke with WDET’s Laura Herberg at Greenfield Union Elementary-Middle School. “I asked somebody, and when they told me about the three choices I had, I didn’t know which one of the three choices I was supposed to take.”
Seaberry said other voters were directed to different polling locations, and that he never received notice of the change until he showed up. He successfully voted on Detroit’s East Side.
“That wasn’t good, that wasn’t good at all. But fortunately, I was determined to vote,” he said.
“Of the 502 precincts in Detroit, there were 25 location changes.” — City Clerk Janice Winfrey
Detroit City Clerk Janice Winfrey said in a statement to WDET that voters were notified via postcards and an election newsletter of the changes.
“Of the 502 precincts in Detroit, there were 25 location changes,” Winfrey said. “A total of 20 involved Detroit public schools, where summer school is being held. Five involved churches, where leaders had reservations about serving as a polling location during the pandemic.”
Here is a list of precinct location changes for Detroit, acquired by the ACLU of Michigan from the Detroit Department of Elections.
*Notes additional precinct changes supplied to WDET that did not appear on the Department of Elections list. Email WDET if your precinct location was changed but is not found here.