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Home : News : News
NEWS | Oct. 12, 2020

Voice Your Values: Voting assistance available on JBSA

By Rachel Kersey 502nd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

As the Nov. 3 election fast approaches, Joint Base San Antonio Voting Assistance Offices are helping eligible voters prepare to cast their ballots.  

The Voting Assistance Offices are headquartered in the JBSA Military & Family Readiness Centers and staff members are working hard to help all eligible voters raise their voices. But this year’s election cycle comes with an extra challenge - COVID-19.  

“I think it’s fair to say that COVID-19 has affected all aspects of our lives, so voting is definitely not an exception,” said Shancii Brown, a Community Readiness Consultant and Installation Voting Assistance Officer, or IVAO, at JBSA-Randolph. “We are seeing a huge shift to mailed-in ballots in primary elections nationwide because, rightfully so, people are concerned about their safety during these times.” 

“Elections have consequences,” Brown said. “By me exercising my right to vote, I have an opportunity to change the direction of matters that are important to me, my family and our community.” 

Having a major election during a pandemic has been a challenge for JBSA voting assistance officers.  

“It has limited the ability of IVAOs and unit voting assistance officers to personally reach people,” said Dwayne Lanier, an IVAO on JBSA-Fort Sam Houston.  

The good news is, there are many online resources to help those interested in exercising their constitutional right.  

The website is very user-friendly, Lanier said, and it can provide most answers people are looking for.  

Voters are encouraged to postmark their mail ballots early, if that is the option they choose to vote. It is projected that the U.S. Postal Service will receive an unprecedented number of ballots for delivery.   

Early voting is also an option to avoid long lines.  

“If people are able to vote early in their state, I would encourage them to do so,” Brown said.  

Fortunately, Texas is a state that offers early voting. All you need is to be a registered voter as of Oct. 5, 2020, and show up at the designated polling location with valid photo identification, such as a military ID, driver’s license, or other government-issued photo ID.  

“If you are registered to vote in Texas, you can vote in-person at your local county voting polling place,” said Tracy Bramlett, one of JBSA-Lackland’s IVAOs and CRCs. “Early voting began Oct. 13 and ends Oct. 30.  

On election day, individuals can vote at any polling place within their county.  However, the rules are constantly changing, so individuals should look to news outlets or visit for updated information, Bramlett said.  

“We are also reminding our customers that the Military & Family Readiness Center is not a polling location. For Bexar County voters needing to locate their polling location, they can go online to:

Although you cannot vote at the VAO, there is much that can be done in those offices. The VAO has a voting workstation for those who want to prepare their information.  

The IVAOs are also available to assist and perform a variety of duties, including providing the appropriate forms, transmitting the completed forms to the appropriate voting office on behalf of the applicant, and coordinating with other departments on the installation to integrate voting assistance into personnel processing activities, and when people are changing their addresses, Bramlett said.  

“Voting should be important to every U.S. citizen,” Bramlett said. “This is a right and every vote counts. Even if you don’t vote, it still counts.” 

The Voting Assistance Offices are open from 7:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.