Beverly Mihalko, Eastern Michigan University associate professor and epidemiologist, provides tips on voting safely in-person amid the pandemic

Photo of a woman wearing a mask while putting her ballot in a voting box.

YPSILANTI — Beverly Mihalko, an Eastern Michigan University associate professor of health sciences and an epidemiologist, says that despite originally planning to vote via mail-in ballot, she’s changed her mind and is going to vote in person.

For those planning to vote in-person on November 3, she’s offered some extra safety precautions that people can take during their time at their voting site.

Beverly Mihalko in the WEMU studio
Dr. Beverly Mihalko

Be antisocial

Mihalko recommends avoiding talking to other people while you’re standing in line. Bringing headphones is a good way to easily do this. She says if you simply stand in line with your mask on and avoid talking, you won’t be sharing droplets.

Be diplomatic

Use common sense and pay attention to your surroundings while at your voting site. If someone is encroaching on your space, you can politely let them go ahead of you. This way, you feel like you have your personal space back, and they get to vote faster.

Leave the kids at home

Kids get restless and like to wander around when they’re bored. And with nothing to occupy them at the voting polls, Mihalko just recommends leaving them home if possible.

Pack a few supplies

Be prepared with a few key supplies that may be needed. It’s not a bad idea to bring an extra mask and a bottle of hand sanitizer. Hand sanitizer should be used after going through doors, as soon as you vote, and after you leave before getting into your car. If you bring a snack for the potentially long wait, bring something wrapped (like a granola bar) so that you don’t have to use your bare hands.

Maintain your resolve

Most importantly, Mihalko says no matter how you decide to cast your ballot to please vote. Exercise your right. 

For more information about Eastern Michigan University’s Health Sciences program, visit the College of Health and Human Services website.

About Eastern Michigan University

Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves nearly 18,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and, its graduate school. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website.

October 26, 2020

Written by:
Morgan Mark

Media Contact:
Morgan Mark