Nevada Secretary of State, Local Election Officials Must Remove Voter Registration Barriers for Native Americans

LAS VEGAS — All Voting is Local Nevada and the Inter-Tribal Council of Nevada today released a brief comparing the high turnout rates of Native American voters in last year’s election with their low voter registration rates. The organizations urged state and local election officials to take action to remove barriers to voter registration. 

The groups note the two major registration barriers for Native Americans: Residents on tribal land are not provided an adequate number of nearby in-person registration locations, and tribal-issued identifications (IDs) are not accepted as a form of identification on the secretary of state’s online voter registration website.

“The Native American community has suffered voter disenfranchisement for far too long, and it is past time that election officials do more for this community than the bare minimum,” the groups stated in the brief. “Clerks must remove administrative barriers to better and more equitably serve Indigenous voters, especially in light of Nevada’s new voting laws.” 

In the brief, All Voting is Local and the Inter-Tribal Council urge officials to implement the following improvements: 

  • The secretary of state must include tribal IDs as an accepted proof of identity when registering to vote on their online voter registration website.
  • County clerks must work with tribal governments within their county to establish polling locations and ballot drop boxes.
  • The secretary of state must update the tribal request form to allow tribes to request both an early voting and Election Day voting location, as well as ballot drop boxes. 
  • The secretary of state must provide a public list of Nevada tribes that have requested a polling place location to provide oversight for the county election officials and tribes. 

The full brief can be found here and is being presented to election officials during meetings with tribes in September. On September 3, All Voting is Local Nevada, Assemblywoman Sarah Peters, State Innovation Exchange Nevada, Tribal Minds Inc, and the Nevada Indian Commission will meet with the Fallon Paiute Shoshone, Walker River Paiute, and Yerington Paiute Tribes.