FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASECR
MONDAY, APRIL 2, 2001(202) 514-2008
WWW.USDOJ.GOVTDD (202) 514-1888
FEDERAL OBSERVERS TO MONITOR CICERO, IL GENERAL ELECTION
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Justice Department will dispatch 37 federal observers to the town of Cicero, Ill. to monitor the municipal general election on April 3, 2001.
Under the Voting Rights Act, which protects the rights of Americans to participate in the electoral process without discrimination, the Justice Department is authorized to ask the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to send federal observers to areas that are covered by a court order. In this case, the U.S. District Court in Chicago authorized observers in October 2000 under an agreed stipulation and order between the Justice Department and the Cook County Clerk. Last February, the Justice Department dispatched federal observers to Cicero to monitor the municipal primary election.
The federal observers, who are supervised by OPM, will watch and record activities during voting hours at select polling locations. The observers will monitor the treatment of Hispanic voters to ensure that they have full and equal access to the voting process. In addition, four Justice Department attorneys will coordinate the federal observer activities and maintain contact with local election officials.
To lodge complaints about discriminatory voting practices in this election, voters may call the federal examiner at 1-888-496-9455. At all times, complaints about discriminatory voting practices may be called in to the Voting Section of the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division at 1-800-253-3931.
More information about the Voting Rights Act and other federal voting laws is available on the Department of Justice Internet site at http://www.usdoj.gov/crt/voting