~ In 3rd phase of distribution process ~
PHILIPSBURG--Voters who do not make use of the opportunity to collect their voting cards at the Government Administration Building between November 25 through December 1, will receive their cards by post.
The Department of Civil Registry made the announcement on Tuesday. Concerns had been expressed about the move to distribute cards at the Government Building, with at least two political parties calling it a form of voter suppression (see related story).
The delivery of the cards by post was referred as the third phase of distribution.
“Registered voters who do not take advantage of the early voting card distributions at the Government Administration Building can receive the cards by mail via Postal Services St. Maarten NV (PSS) from December 4, 2023,” it was stated in a press release.
The Civil Registry said it is allowing eligible voters to collect their voting cards at the Government Administration Building, from November 25 through December 1, ahead of the postal distribution service. “In the past, many voting cards have been returned by PSS, following information from homeowners that registered voters no longer reside at the addresses registered in the Civil Registry. The option to retrieve voting cards earlier alleviates returns and double printing of the voting cards. It is important to note that voters may request a reprint of their voting cards during and after all phases of the distribution dates leading up to Election Day,” it was stated in the release.
“The intention was not to create cause for concern, but to inform registered voters of the available option. This is especially crucial for those who have recently moved and have not had a chance to update their home addresses in the Civil Registry,” stated Prime Minister and Minister of General Affairs Silveria Jacobs, who hopes voters take advantage of the early collection times, which are
scheduled outside of regular business hours to eliminate lines at the Government Administration Building.
The Ministry of General Affairs and the Central Voting Bureau encourage voters to stay informed about the developing preparations for Election Day. Further details regarding polling station locations, voting hours, and public order protocols will be communicated in subsequent releases.