Ohio Senator Nickie Antonio spoke with America’s Work Force Radio Podcast on June 16 about election reform legislation.
Sen. Antonio discussed legislation in the Ohio House pertaining to absentee voting and how to obtain a ballot. She explained the methods of voter suppression with absentee and mail-in ballots. Sen. Antonio said one form of voter suppression with absentee ballots is people filling out the absentee request form thinking it is the actual ballot. Another form of voter suppression she spoke about is the ballots being too big for the scanners counting votes, leaving election officials to cut and trim them to fit. Sen. Antonio then discussed how ballots sometimes arrive damaged or unusable. She said there needs to be legislation passed to help protect ballots to avoid voter suppression.
Sen. Antonio continued by explaining how many absentee ballots show up late, making them ineligible to be counted. With new legislation, ballots postmarked on the day before the election will be eligible, even if they show up late. Lastly, Sen. Antonio spoke about a recent Supreme Court ruling prohibiting discrimination against the LGBTQ+ community in the workplace.
Melissa Cropper, President of the Ohio Federation of Teachers spoke about racism and how it should be treated as a public health issue. She said people need to elevate the issue to get as much attention on it as possible in order to gain allies and counter all forms of racism. Cropper went on to discuss schools reopening for the fall semester and how there needs to be some updated health parameters ensuring the safety of teachers and staff. Finally, she spoke about the Ohio budget shortfall for schools and how she hoped the HEROES Act would have helped schools, but does not do enough for them.