You've gotten your ballot, and now it's time to send it back to the US. But how? We've put together a short explainer below!
Fax plus postal mail states (Alaska, California, Florida, Louisiana, and Oklahoma)
Fax machines are not prolific in the Czech Republic. Instead we recommend email to fax! There are many commercial services available, such as fax.plus or efax.com. You can also google "email to fax solutions" for more options.
Postal mail only states (Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey**, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.)
If you need to send your ballot back to the US by Czech Post and wish to send it by international priority, you may use a Z stamp or 45 CZK stamp for mail weighing up to 50g.
Courier (FedEx, DHL, etc).
Call your local election office in the United States to check out the best address, and then check out courier solutions. The cheapest we've found so far is DHL's Service Point - they are currently offering a 20% discount with a special code (check their page for more details). There are many other courier solutions available as well, this is not a recommendation or advertisement.
U.S. Embassy diplomatic pouch
Mailing your ballot through the embassy is free IF you use an elections material U.S. postage paid return envelope (the envelope template is usually provided with your ballot, and is also available at FVAP.gov). You may also mail your ballot in an envelope with sufficient U.S. postage.
Please note that using the diplomatic pouch does not mean your ballot will arrive faster. The embassy generally estimates that it can take a month or more for mail to arrive at its destination in the U.S.
The U.S. Embassy is located in Prague at Tržiště 365/15, 118 00 in Malá Strana.
Ballots can be dropped off at the American Citizens Services unit any business day from 8:30 a.m. to noon or from 1 to 4 p.m. The embassy asks that you bring some form of ID, preferably your U.S. passport. Ballots should be sealed but will be x-rayed.
Email/online states (Alabama*, Arizona***, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska***, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Washington State, Washington DC, West Virginia, Wyoming
Follow the instructions on your ballot material and ask us if you have questions! Also, don't be tempted to delay, since the pandemic, regular absentee voting has grown enormously in the States, which means the sooner voters from abroad send ours in (even by email!) the better.
*Alabama voters must demonstrate that they are voting from abroad in order to be allowed to submit their ballot electronically. See Alabama's guidelines.
** If you email your ballot to New Jersey, you must also immediately postal mail it back in.
***Arizona, and Nebraska voters should ask their local election offices about voting online.
Or, a one-on-one live voter help is just a Zoom away! Click in to ZoomTheVote, hosted and staffed by experienced VoteFromAbroad voter helpers, from anywhere in the world, Tuesdays and Wednesdays from noon-4pm EDT and Sundays from 11am-3pm EDT.
Democrats Abroad Czech Republic members were delighted to meet up to celebrate the first Prague Pride Parade held since 2019. Members joined together to walk with the nearly 60,000 people who came out to celebrate, show off our pride colors and enjoy the welcoming atmosphere. We were all so glad to be back!!
You've gotten your ballot, and now it's time to send it back to the US. But how? Here's a short explainer.
Fax plus postal mail states (Alaska, California, Florida, Louisiana, and Oklahoma)
Fax machines are not prolific in the Czech Republic. Instead we recommend email to fax! There are many commercial services available, such as fax.plus or efax.com, you can also google "email to fax solutions" for more options.
Postal mail only states (Alabama*, Arkansas, Connecticut, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey**, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and Wisconsin)
Postal returns are slow this year, so if you're planning to send your ballot by Česká pošta, get started now! If you're looking for other solutions you can also:
Send your ballot via courier (FedEx, DHL, etc).
Call your local election office to check out the best address, and then check out courier solutions. The cheapest we've found so far is DHL's Service Point. If you go by a DHL service point and use an Obal Express Easy 1 - obalka, it costs 1130 CZK to courier your ballot back to any point in the US. Pick up services are more expensive. There are many other courier solutions available as well, this is not a recommendation or advertisement.
Note: do you know a cheaper courier solution for shipping to the US? Let us know!
Email/online states (Alabama*, Arizona*, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska*, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Utah, Washington State, Washington DC, West Virginia, Wyoming
Follow the instructions on your ballot material and ask us if you have questions! Also, don't be tempted to delay. State election offices are handling massive quantities of absentee ballots this year and the sooner voters from abroad send ours in the better.
*Alabama, Arizona, and Nebraska voters should ask their local election offices about voting online.
** If you email your ballot to New Jersey, you must also postal mail it back in.
US embassy diplomatic pouch
The deadline (October 2) has passed for sending your ballot back through the US Embassy in Prague's diplomatic pouch.
The 2019 Democrats Abroad Czech Republic Annual General Meeting, which will include elections to the Executive Committee, will be held on Tuesday, March 26th, 2019 at 7:00 PM. The location and further details will be announced at least one month prior to the meeting.
All positions (detailed below) are up for election at this meeting. As per our by-laws, no officer may serve more than two consecutive terms in the same position. All positions and their current office-holders are listed below with those that are term-limited indicated.
Chair Geoff Klimko
Vice Chair Julia Bryan
Secretary Sue Legro
Treasurer Marshall Johnson
Counsel Mike Gisondi
At-large 1 Krysti Brice
At-large 2 Kim Strozewski
Creag Hayes has been appointed as chair of the DACZ Nominations and Elections Committee (NEC) for our 2019 elections by the DA Czech Republic Executive Committee.
Nominations for an office shall be made in writing sent to the NEC. A member may nominate themselves. The NEC may also make nominations directly. Nominations should be sent to the NEC by notifying the Committee via email at [email protected] by no later than February 23, 2019.
A statement supporting the nomination may also be included. It should be no longer than one page. The NEC will issue the nominating report no later than February 26, 2019. The nominating report will include nominations, nominee statements (if any), and full proxy voting guidelines. Elections will be conducted by vote of those present at the AGM.
A tentative agenda for the AGM is listed here:
- Call to order
- Approval of minutes from last meeting
- Report of the Chair
- Report of the Treasurer
- Executive Committee Elections
- Old Business
- New business
We encourage anyone interested in running for a position to read the position descriptions for each office. Please let us know if you have any questions about the positions and what the work and the time commitment entails.
Democrats Abroad Czech Republic kicked off the midterms last Saturday with our first registration event of the year. Combining registration with a cookie swap, members gathered together for wine, coffee and a tremendous variety of cookies.
While most attendees had not yet requested their ballots this year, we were all ready to get prepared for what all believe is a midterm year to remember. By the end of the night, more than half of the group had printed out their ballot requests and were ready to send them in to their local election offices back in the States.
We also discussed the most important messages to remind our American friends abroad:
1. Yes, we should all request our ballots each election year if we want to make sure our ballots are federally protected in case of a recount.
2. Yes, US House and US Senate races are federal elections and Americans abroad can and should vote in them.
On the evening of Thursday, February 2, Democrats Abroad Czech Republic held a “Send Congress a Message” event in Beckett’s Irish Pub, in downtown Prague.
Despite the icy weather, what began as a gathering in a cozy side room turned into a group of about 50 people that had to branch out into the main bar. DACZ provided paper, envelopes, a list of tips on writing a letter to Congress, and three sample letters as food for thought: one opposing the appointment of Steve Bannon to the National Security Council, one concerning the Supreme Court nomination of Neil Gorsuch, and the last against the seven country ban.
Letter writers were free to write Congress and other governing bodies about issues of concern, and participants helped each other look up local representatives. Other topics such as the DAPL, opposition to Betsy DeVos’ Education Secretary nomination, the ACA repeal, LGBTQAI civil rights and safety, and concerns about White nationalism bounced around the room and made it onto paper as Beckett’s outstanding servers brought food and drinks at lightning speed. The event was more than putting pens to paper; it was a time for everyone to voice concerns and find comfort in each other.
Part of what made this gathering so special was the presence of people from outside the Czech capitol. To help bring people together in the spirit of support networks and activism, DACZ plans to expand these events on a national level by making sample letters easily accessible so people throughout the Czech Republic can hold their own events. Information on these events will soon be available on DACZ's events page and Czech out DACZ’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/DemocratsAbroadCzechRepublic/.
by R. Samson
DA Czech Republic was proud to participate in the January 21st Prague Solidarity Rally with the Women's March in Washington. Starting at noon, ralliers gathered at the Horse on Wenceslas Square to share their concerns along with other supporters of democracy and human rights all around the world.
It was wonderful to see so many Democrats Abroad members at the rally (and so many fantastic posters as well). Of course we could not be prouder of the Democrats Abroad members who helped with the amazing organization of the rally - Bonita Rhoads, Beth Russell, and Nancy Bishop, and who created puppets that became a worldwide hit - Leah Gaffen. The DACZ chair, Julia Bryan, was honored to be one of the speakers at the rally as well.
The rally was one of over 600 sister events of the Women’s March on Washington, taking place on President Donald J. Trump’s first day in office. Almost 5 million marchers marched across the globe.
Many thanks to the DACZ volunteers who came out and phone banked with us - calling members to let them know about the upcoming Global Presidential Primary Tuesday March 1 & March 8th at The Globe, Pstrossova 6, from 3pm to 7pm. For anyone not in town those days, remember that you can also participate by downloading your ballot here.
Thanks to all who came out last night to CET to watch the 6th Democratic Debate. Despite the snow and fre-e-e-ezing temperatures, we had a good crowd and everyone enjoyed the conversation and the opportunity to meet new members.
Don't forget the upcoming phonebank and pizza party on February 10th! RSVP for details please.