Brooklyn residents reported receiving absentee ballots with envelopes with the wrong name and address, Gothamist reported.
The New York City Board of Elections told THE CITY that a private vendor hired to print and distribute absentee ballots in Brooklyn and Queen is responsible for the error.
Voters across Brooklyn reported getting a mislabeled “official absentee ballot envelope,” that could potentially invalidate their absentee vote, several local outlets reported.
Gothamist and WNYC reported that multiple people across almost 10 neighborhoods got ballots with return envelopes that had the wrong name and address.
In that case, if they were to fill it out and send it back, their vote could be attributed to someone else. If the signature on the ballot does not match the identification on the return envelope, the vote could be voided.
The New York City Board of Elections has mailed out almost 500,000 absentee ballots, including 140,000 in Brooklyn, as more people elect to vote by mail due to the pandemic.
Victoria Edel told THE CITY that she received a return envelope with the name and address of a woman who lives a street over. The woman’s last name also began with a “D.”
“This is not my ballot, we have this random lady’s ballot — it’s like they messed this up in a big way,” Edel told THE CITY.
The Board of Elections did not reply to Business Insider’s request for comment at the time of publication but a spokesperson told THE CITY that a vendor hired to print and distribute absentee ballots in Brooklyn and Queens, Phoenix Graphics of Rochester, New York was responsible for the error.
Phoenix Graphics could not be reached by phone or email for comment at the time of publication.
“We are determining how many voters have been affected but we can assure that the vendor will address this problem in future mailings, and make sure people who received erroneous envelopes receive new ones,” Valerie Vasquez told THE CITY. “We will ensure on behalf of the voters in Brooklyn that the proper ballots and ballot envelopes are in the hands of the voters in advance of Election Day so they can vote.”
Jeremy Klopman told Gothamist that he also received an envelope with the wrong name and address and he’s concerned the error could ruin people’s faith in voting in areas where a race maybe close.
“My heart just started sinking because I’m sitting there thinking, if they sent out half a million ballots already to the wrong place, that’s going to cause a huge problem to claw them all back,” Klopman told Gothamist. “There’s definitely a sinking feeling.”
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