Roosevelt Island residents waited on a long line stretching outside the PS/IS 217 polling location and wrapping around the Westview building next door
Image of November 2, 2020
Roosevelt Island Voting Line From Julia Chang
to cast their vote in the November 2020 election.
It should be much easier for Roosevelt Island residents to vote in future elections, including the upcoming June 2021 Primary, because Early Voting is coming to Roosevelt Island.
Today, Roosevelt Island and Upper East Side Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright announced an Early Voting polling site for Roosevelt Island at the Sportspark facility (250 Main Street).
asked and we answered. We secured an agreement with
@RIOC to bring
early voting to Roosevelt Island this June. Sportspark Gymnasium will be
open for early voting Saturday, June 12 to Sunday, June 20.
— Rebecca Seawright (@SeawrightForNY)
May 6, 2021
According to this May 6 press release from Ms Seawright:
Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright announced today that Roosevelt Island’s
Sportspark Gymnasium will be available as an additional early voting
pollsite from Saturday, June 12 to Sunday, June 20, according to an
agreement she successfully reached with New York City Board of Elections and
Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation’s (RIOC) President and CEO Shelton J.
Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright said, “Roosevelt Islanders asked and we
answered. In coordination with RIOC to bring early voting to Roosevelt
Island this June. We must fulfill the intent of early voting including the
ease of convenient voting times including early morning, late evening, and
weekend hours. We are proud to support the establishment of additional sites
to eliminate lines and long wait times that deter voters.”
Seawright had previously secured an additional early voting site for the
general election last October at Marymount Manhattan College in order to
help relieve the persistently long lines at Robert F. Wagner Middle School
on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. The story made national news as she
threatened litigation calling on the Board of Elections to open additional
early voting sites to alleviate the pressure on the single largest early
voting site in the state, overburdened with 118,000 eligible voters in what
she described as “the horrendous treatment of the disabled, senior citizens,
and working men and women– voters who have stood in line for several hours
to cast their ballots, including in the rain.”
… There is no early voting polling station on Roosevelt Island. This week
the Robert Wagner Middle School at 225 East 75th Street was the only early
voting period polling location for Roosevelt Island….
…Roosevelt Island needs an early voting site here for our many elderly and
get additional NYC voting site on Roosevelt Island.
Sportspark facility to
— Roosevelt Islander (@Rooseveltisland)
October 28, 2020
RIOC President Shelton Haynes, responding to an inquiry by a resident asking for an early voting site on Roosevelt Island before the Novmber 2020 election, reported:
As an update, Judy Berdy introduced me to the Manhattan Deputy Chief
Clerk from the Borough Administration’s office in mid-September. We
then arranged for their staff to tour Sportspark as a potential early
voting location from October 23rd to November
3rd. Sportspark met all of the Americans with Disabilities Act
(ADA)requirements and was a large enough space but unfortunately they
elected to not use this facility.
Ms Seawright delivered and Roosevelt
Island residents will now be able to Early Vote at the
Kudos to all the electeds and activists who fought to bring early voting to Roosevelt Island! A victory for increased participation in our democracy. https://t.co/hefvbXGTfz
— Billy Freeland 🚴♂️🚠 (@BillyFreelandNY) May 6, 2021