GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — In honor of National Voter Registration Day, the Hispanic Center of Western Michigan has launched a hotline that they hope will increase voter turnout for people in the Hispanic community. 

Holly Rea Clarkson, the center’s language and workforce development manager, explained that several barriers prevent Hispanic Americans from voting. She hopes that offering this service in Spanish will at least help remove the language barrier. 

“We can help with the entire process. So that is from registration, from understanding where your polling location is, from applying for an absentee voter ballot and what does that look like. Where are the different stands within the city of Grand Rapids, the city of Wyoming or wherever you live, so that we can help in that process,” Clarkson said.

There are two hotlines that people can call between 8 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. to speak directly with a staff member. Those are 616.246.0562 or 616.246.568. The center, which is located at 1204 Cesar E. Chavez Ave. SW, can also assist with voter registration in person. No appointment is necessary. 

“We’re here to help always, especially with these initiatives and we are hoping to make this a stable position moving forward, so it’s not just in election years, but we’re consistently helping with voter registration with even citizenship help and what that process looked like and how you can prepare for these election periods,” Clarkson said.

The Hispanic Center of Western Michigan, which has been serving the community for more than 40 years, offers various services. You can learn more about the resources it has available on its website and Facebook page