DURHAM: Durham group marches to encourage early voting - WSMV Channel 4

Durham group marches to encourage early voting

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Hundreds of people marched to the Durham Board of Elections to highlight the importance of early voting and raise awareness about changes in voting laws. Hundreds of people marched to the Durham Board of Elections to highlight the importance of early voting and raise awareness about changes in voting laws.
DURHAM, N.C. -

In less than two weeks, primary elections will begin and one Triangle area group is stressing the importance of early voting.

Organizers with the Durham Congregations Associations and Neighborhoods held a public meeting and march Sunday afternoon to drive home that message. Hundreds of people marched to the Durham Board of Elections to highlight the importance of early voting and raise awareness about changes in voting laws.

CAN officials said there has been so much confusion about voting with this coming election, and they want to make sure everyone knows what's going on so they can cast their vote next month.

CAN cautioned that if you head to the polls to vote early, volunteers are told to ask every voter if they have a photo ID. But voters won't actually be required to have an ID until January 2015.

Voter ID is part of the election reform legislation that signed into law last year. The law also shortens early voting by one week.

Election officials said anytime there's a change to the law, they want to get the word out about the change.

Ivan Parra, lead organizer of CAN, said it's important to keep the community up to date about the changes because not everyone votes in off-season elections.

"Sometimes people don't know that in this election there are so many local and important seats that are selected," Parra said. "Sometimes they don't pay attention because they think that they will be informed in November. They don't read the fine print, so it's important that everybody knows what's going on."

Aminah Thompson, who attended the meeting and march, said it's important people take advantage of their right to vote.

"It's important to vote early because on election day there are long lines -- anything can happen. So it's important to get out there and let your voice be heard early," Thompson said.

Early voting ends May3, and the primary is May 6.

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