Duval Elections Call Center Shut Down After Employees Test Positive For COVID-19

Aug 21, 2020

The Duval County Supervisor of Elections’ call center was shut down this week after several employees who worked during the primary tested positive for COVID-19.

Supervisor of Elections Mike Hogan said he first found out about an employee testing positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday, the day after the Primary Election.

Related: Duval County Primary Returns

The 50 or so employees were sent home that day and Hogan decided to shut the call center down a little earlier than he usually would.

“We were going to shut down anyway. We shut down normally a day or two after the election just in case there are any lagging calls,” he explained. “But we made the decision not to wait until Friday.”

Hogan said his office has followed all CDC guidance. Employees were pre-screened before coming to work, and staff have been disinfecting restrooms and other common areas.

“We’ve done everything you’re supposed to do, so I’m not sure what else we could have done,” he said. “We feel like we’ve done everything right.”

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Hogan said the employees who have tested positive have all been quarantined at home.

“They’re not hospitalized or anything. I think they’re basically on Tylenol,” he said.

Related: More Local, State And National Coronavirus News

None of the workers who have tested positive had physical contact with the voting public.

Hogan said because this outbreak happened after the election, it will not have an impact on the Supervisor of Elections Office.

He also said the primary election went pretty smoothly, with the exception of a few technical hiccups that were quickly remedied.

“In 199 sites, you’re going to have something happen,” he said. “One of our tabulators went down but we have them stationed in the field and had them roll the replacement right in. Didn't take more than 10 or 15 minutes from the time that trouble started.”

Hogan said there were two other minor issues that he knows of, but both were fixed within minutes and everyone got to vote.

Brendan Rivers can be reached at brivers@wjct.org, 904-358-6396 or on Twitter at @BrendanRivers.