Why Give Paid Time Off to Vote?

We know that not being able to take time off to vote (or not being aware of time off to vote policies) can be a barrier for potential voters. While a little less than half of states require employers to offer paid time off to vote, the rest do not. Offering unpaid time off to vote can also help but makes employees choose between voting and their paycheck

Nonprofits can make a difference by leading with policies that ensure all of their employees have access to the ballot box. In addition to publicizing election deadlines, helping voters make a plan, and encouraging folks to vote, making sure they are aware of your time off to vote policies can be key. This year, we encourage nonprofits to consider including early voting in their time off to vote policies to help alleviate long lines at the polls on Election.

Download our Nonprofit Staff Vote Toolkit here!

Flagship Partners

Here are the national partners who have signed on to the Nonprofit Staff Vote campaign. Stay tuned as this list is GROWING!

State Requirements for Time Off to Vote

Most states already require employers to provide their staff time off to vote, and many states require paid time off to vote. Details vary on the amount of time guaranteed and notice requirements. Employers can of course exceed state requirements.

StateTime off?Paid?Length*
AlabamaYesNoOne hour
ArizonaYesYesThree hours
CaliforniaYesYesUp to two hours
ColoradoYesYesUp to two hours
GeorgiaYesYesUp to two hours
HawaiiYesYesTwo hours
IllinoisYesNoTwo hours
IowaYesYesUp to two hours
KansasYesYesUp to two hours
KentuckyYesNoFour hours
MarylandYesYesTwo hours
MassachusettsYesNoFirst two hours of polls being open
MissouriYesYesThree hours
NebraskaYesYesUp to two hours
NevadaYesYesOne to three hours
New HampshireNo
New JerseyNo
Nex MexicoYesYesTwo hours
New YorkYesYesTwo hours
North CarolinaNo
North DakotaNo
OklahomaYesYesTwo hours
Rhode IslandNo
South CarolinaNo
South DakotaYesYesTwo hours
TennesseeYesYesUp to three hours
UtahYesYesTwo hours
West VirginiaYesYesUp to three hours
WisconsinYesNoUp to three hours
WyomingYesYesOne hour
* Not all states specified the length of time employers are required to give employees for voting.

Time Off to Vote Resources

Welcome to our partner tools that have everything you need make sure your staff is ready and able to vote on or before Election Day.

Sample time off to vote policies
If you do not currently have a time off to vote policy or want to update yours, here is a good place to start. The three policies outline different ways you may ask staff to notify the organization they are taking time off to vote and when they should take that time. 

Sample “Get Out the Vote” email from leadership
Making sure nonprofit staff are aware of your time off to vote policy is almost as important as having it. Mentioning it during staff meetings, posting it in your internal communication, and sharing it over email can all be effective ways to publicize your policy. 

Bonus! Give Time Off to Work the Polls or Volunteer 
Some organizations even offer time off to be poll workers or to generally volunteer in civic activities on Election Day. In some cases, organizations pay the difference between the poll worker’s wage and the nonprofit staff person’s regular wage. Below are a few examples from organizations:

Social Media Examples
Whether you want to share your policy or encourage others to do so, posting on social media can be a good strategy for spreading the word. See sample social text you can use right now!

Publicizing your policy: #VoteReady but not sure when you’ll get to the polls? [Insert org name] proudly offers paid time off to vote for all staff and participates in the #nonprofitstaffvote campaign 

Encouraging others to join the movement: Did you know not having paid time off to vote can be a major barrier for people voting in person? Join us and nonprofits across the country in the #nonprofitstaffvote campaign and offer paid time off to vote.

Early Voting: Tick tock, it’s vote o’clock! That’s right, early voting is open in many states across the country! Do you get paid time off to vote in person early or on Election Day? If you work with us, the answer’s yes! #nonprofitstaffvote

Sample Social Media Graphics (right-click on each image to save it to your device)