Portland/ Politics & Govt
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Published on June 21, 2024
Clackamas County Clerk and Elections Office Secures $59,000 Grant to Enlist College Students for 2024 ElectionsSource: Google Street View

The gears of democracy are getting a $59,000 boost in Clackamas County as the Clerk and Elections office has recently been named a recipient of the Help America Vote College Program (HAVCP) grant. According to an announcement made by the office, this infusion of funds is part of a nationwide initiative backed by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC), which has selected 21 grantees across the country.

Launching this summer, the grant-fueled program, aptly named Diversity in Democracy, intends to usher in a new cadre of election workers, drawn specifically from the local college student population. Announcing the initiative, Clackamas County Elections has laid out plans to use the grant money to attract, train, and pay college students for their work in the coming November 5, 2024, General Election. This cash influx will go towards training materials, outreach efforts, and on-the-ground personnel—that being the students themselves who were chosen as temporary election workers.

“This grant won’t just allow us to recruit and hire local college students as temporary election workers, it will also allow us to introduce local government and elections administration as a career path for the next generation of public servants,” Clerk Catherine McMullen told Clackamas County. In a show of local educational partnership, Clackamas Community College (CCC) will work closely with the County Clerk's office in the hiring process of these student workers, aiming to provide them with a dual opportunity in both employment and civic engagement.

Supporting the County's efforts, CCC President Tim Cook explained the mutual benefits of the partnership saying, “There is a history of collaboration between Clackamas Community College and Clackamas County Elections, and we are looking forward to furthering that collaboration with bringing employment, training, and community service opportunities to our student body.” The recruitment drive will officially commence during the CCC Summer Connections 2024 Juneteenth and Pride Month celebration, to be held on June 21 from 5-7:30 p.m. at the Wacheno Welcome Center on the CCC Oregon City campus, involving the go-getting students in an event that marks a historic emancipation as well as a celebration of diversity and inclusion.