Jacksonville poll worker tests positive for coronavirus

Voting station
More coronavirus concerns from Election Day.

Two low-stakes presidential primaries proved to be high-stakes for at least one Jacksonville poll worker.

A Monday media release from the city of Jacksonville said the Duval County Supervisor of Elections was notified of a positive COVID diagnosis by a poll worker who worked Election Day.

The afflicted poll worker was stationed on Jacksonville’s Southside Precinct 608 which is located at Freedom Christian Fellowship Church at 3423 Loretto Road.

The long timeframe between Election Day and today’s date illustrates the incubation period for the current coronavirus.

The worker began displaying symptoms six days after the poll work. Tested on Friday, the positive took three days to receive.

For the 360 voters at this location, as well as staff, the advice is to “take appropriate steps and seek the counsel of a medical adviser.”

“These voters will also be contacted by mail or by phone in the coming days,” the media release denotes.

The Duval coronavirus patient is not the only election day worker fallen by COVID-19.

In Broward County, two poll workers followed a similar trajectory.

They were apparently healthy enough to work and unsymptomatic enough to pass muster on Election Day, but they also presented symptoms days later.

Pressure was brought on Gov. Ron DeSantis to postpone the elections as coronavirus coursed through the Sunshine State, but he wasn’t hearing it.

“We’re definitely voting. They voted during the Civil War. We’re going to vote,” DeSantis told media ahead of the election.

Secretary of State Laurel Lee, a DeSantis appointee, was a signatory to a letter from four states.

“Unlike concerts, sporting events or other mass gatherings where large groups of people travel long distances to congregate in a confined space for an extended period of time, polling locations see people from a nearby community coming into and out of the building for a short duration,” Lee and the other officials said in a statement.

After the election, Lee lauded “the extraordinary work of our supervisors of elections, their staff and thousands of poll workers … professionalism in addressing concerns and a steady commitment to ensuring that eligible voters were able to vote.”

Election results will be certified Tuesday.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski

One comment

  • Ward Posey

    March 30, 2020 at 5:55 pm

    I was a poll worker in Pinellas County. It was a very unsafe atmosphere. No gloves, not enough separation between poll workers, only two canisters of 100 wipes each provided by the elections office. I am surprised many other poll workers are not positive. It was a complete cluster f–k in my opinion. I will not work for Pinellas again, and I have worked the polls in five different counties over the past 25 years. We were unprotected and I am surprised more of us did not come down with Coronavirus. DeSantis and his crew flat screwed up by not postponing the election.

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