How To Report Voter Intimidation And Other Election Resources For Spanish Speakers

Oct 16, 2020

Lee en español. 

KUNR recently hosted a Facebook Live event in Spanish, in partnership with The Nevada Independent - En Español, to clarify the voting process for the upcoming general election.

To learn more, KUNR’s Lucia Starbuck spoke with bilingual reporter Natalie Van Hoozer, who moderated the event. 

Lucia Starbuck: So Natalie, fill us in. For listeners who don’t speak Spanish or couldn’t attend the Facebook Live event, what was it about?

Natalie Van Hoozer: I moderated a conversation with KUNR’s Stephanie Serrano, my bilingual reporting colleague, and Jazmin Orozco Rodriguez, a bilingual reporter with The Nevada Independent

We talked about topics we’ve been reporting on, including the processes and deadlines for registering to vote and casting a ballot, whether that be by mail or in person. 

We also touched on the types of questions voters will find on the ballot, voting resources and voter intimidation. 

Starbuck: Talking about voter intimidation, what does that mean? And how can voters identify and report it?

Van Hoozer: Stephanie with KUNR spoke to this. She explained, generally speaking, that voter intimidation is when you go to vote and someone there is pressuring you to vote a certain way, asking personal questions, or maybe even using tactics like asking if you’re eligible to vote.

[Original quote in Spanish]

“Estas personas van a tener un chaleco beige. Con estas personas puedes reportar quien te está intimidando.”

Stephanie is saying that there will be designated election workers in beige vests at polling sites, and those are the people you should speak to if you’re noticing or experiencing voter intimidation. If the situation gets tense, poll workers can call the registrar of voters or law enforcement.

Starbuck: What about Spanish speakers who want to vote, either by mail or in person? What does that process look like?

Van Hoozer: Stephanie said the polling machines will allow people to vote in English or Spanish, but the polling locations won’t necessarily have personnel on-site who can speak Spanish. The Washoe County Registrar of Voters' office encourages people to bring someone with them who can serve as an interpreter if they are going to vote in person. 

If you’re voting by mail, someone who’s bilingual in your household could help you complete your ballot, or you can show up at the Washoe County Registrar of Voters’ office, and there are some Spanish-speaking staff who can answer questions.

Starbuck: This general election includes more than voting for president. What other questions and races can Nevadans expect on the ballot?

Van Hoozer: Jazmin with The Nevada Independent mentioned that there are six ballot questions this year, as well as local, state and federal races that people can vote on. 

[Original quote in Spanish]

“También tenemos elecciones importantes para representantes del estado y elecciones más cercanas que impactan a nuestras comunidades locales.”

Here Jazmin is reminding everyone that you can vote on issues and candidates, including various members of the school board and city council, along with judges and members of the Nevada System of Higher Education Board of Regents.

She also touched on deadlines for registration, how to fill out a mail-in ballot and how to find the locations for mail-in ballot drop-off boxes. You can find those locations on the Nevada Secretary of State’s website

Starbuck: You mentioned voting resources, especially for Spanish speakers. What information is available? 

Van Hoozer: We want to get the word out that KUNR and The Nevada Independent have bilingual election coverage. 

On the Spanish-language page of the KUNR website, we have a comprehensive article detailing voter registration and voting procedures. Stephanie also illustrated a guide with key steps for voting by mail. 

The Nevada Independent recently published articles and videos, in both English and Spanish, explaining the six ballot questions. The Nevada Independent’s Spanish-language podcast, Cafecito con Luz y Michelle, covers topics related to the election as well.

The Washoe County Registrar of Voters’ website also has videos in English and Spanish that detail how to fill out and submit a mail-in ballot. 

To view a recording for the Spanish-language Facebook Live event, which includes additional information and resources, visit KUNR Public Radio's Facebook page or play the embedded video below.

KUNR’s Spanish-language Facebook Live event about the voting process for Nevada’s 2020 general election was supported by the Facebook Journalism Project and America Amplified, and production assistance was provided by Noticiero Móvil.