“My Mother did not vote because she had no idea that she could have a translator,” said Maria Starr VonCore

It’s not an uncommon story. Many Latinos and other Minorities in this Country don’t feel like they have a seat at the voting table. Maria was one of them. She didn’t vote until she was 35.

“When we were raised we were told only people who owned homes would vote.”

So the same day she bought her first home, she registered to vote.

“I just went out and voted I didn’t know what I voted for or who I voted for. Its just that I knew I had to go in and do something.”

Now Maria fights so other Latinos won’t be a lost or misinformed as she was. During elections she translates ballots for people who need help reading English.

Today she joined City Clerks and other voter rights advocates who are pushing for people to sign up for an automatic application. One of the people heading the initiative is Lansing City Clerk Chris Swope.

“By joining our automatic application list you’ll get an application before every election. So you’ll know an election is coming. Simply sign and return that and when the ballots come into our office, we’ll mail it to your home.”

Voting from home allows people extra time to go over the ballot and research the issues, something Maria says is necessary for the people she works with.

In November, Proposal 3 was approved meaning you no longer needed a reason to vote absentee. Everyone is eligible to vote from home, but the process varies from county to county. The best way to find out how you can sign up is by calling your local city clerk office.