Thursday, October 27, 2016

Fear of election violence leads some schools to close, or polls to be moved from schools

This year's presidential election has gotten testy, not just among the candidates, but among voters, creating worries that there will be verbal and physical confrontations on Election Day. That has caused some polling places to be moved out of schools and for some schools to cancel classes for Nov. 8, Patrick Whittle and David Sharp report for The Associated Press. "The fear is that the ugly rhetoric of the campaign could escalate into confrontations and even violence in school hallways, endangering students."

Classes have been canceled in Falmouth
for Election Day. (Best Places map)
Schools in Falmouth, Maine, will be closed on Election Day and additional police officers are scheduled to work, Whittle and Sharp report. Police Chief Ed Tolan told AP, “If anybody can sit there and say they don’t think this is a contentious election, then they aren’t paying much attention.”

Whittle and Sharp write, "Some of those anxieties have been stoked by Donald Trump’s repeated claims that the election is rigged and his appeal to his supporters to stand guard against fraud at the polls. Some are worried about clashes between the self-appointed observers and voters." Alpay Balkir, whose son attends the school in Falmouth, which doubles as a polling place, told AP, “If it’s going to be as chaotic as they say it’s going to be, it’s a good thing. Kids should stay out of it. I don’t know what the environment is going to be like.”

"It’s difficult to say how many school-based polling places have been moved this year, given how decentralized the voting process is across the country," the reporters write. "But state and local officials say voting has been removed or classes have been canceled on Election Day at schools in Illinois, Maine, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and elsewhere."

No comments: