Media Contact

Dorrie Toney, [email protected]

July 11, 2023

The Irwin County Board of Elections and Registrations will discuss proposed polling place changes that will consolidate the county’s three precincts into one polling place.

Tuesday, July 11, 5 pm

Irwin County Board of Elections and Registrations at 225 East Fourth Street, Ocilla, GA 31774. (A temporary entrance is at the rear of the building. If you need assistance, come to the back parking lot and call (229) 468-9441 and someone will come out to meet you. You can also ring the doorbell located next the the Commissioner’s Office sign.)

Rahul Garabadu, ACLU of Georgia Senior Voting Rights Staff Attorney

“We are calling on Irwin County to reject the proposal to shut down two out of three existing precincts in the county. At a time when absentee voting is becoming more difficult because of Georgia's anti-voter law, SB 202, it is more critical than ever to ensure that voters have access to in-person voting opportunities. The proposal to eliminate precincts in the eastern and western portions of the county will make it more burdensome for all Irwin County voters to cast a ballot, especially those who do not have easy access to a vehicle and those who may not be able to drive,” Rahul Garabadu, ACLU of Georgia Senior Voting Rights Staff Attorney 

On Friday, July 7, 2023, the ACLU of Georgia sent a letter to members of the Irwin County Board of Elections and Registrations opposing a proposal to eliminate two of three existing precincts, leaving only one precinct open in Ocilla to serve the entire county. Six years ago, the ACLU of Ga. sent a similar letter to Irwin County, outlining opposition to a proposal to shut down seven of eight existing precincts. After a groundswell of opposition at the time, the Board ultimately elected to maintain three precincts in Ocilla, Holt, and Irwinville. 

Six years later, this Board has resurrected a similarly ill-conceived and likely unlawful proposal. This proposal is even more harmful today than it was six years ago. Since 2017, it has become more difficult for voters to cast absentee ballots because of the effects of Senate Bill 202, which was enacted in 2021 and has introduced new restrictions to absentee voting and the use of drop boxes.  

Read the letter sent to commissioners on July 7, 2023, here.