METAIRIE, La. (WGNO) — “Your vote is just as important as any other vote,” says Dennis DiMarco with the Jefferson Parish Registrar of Voters.

Voters lined up to get a head start on voting for the upcoming elections scheduled for Oct. 14. For one voter, she sees perks in taking advantage of voting early.

“Lately it has been, it’s so much more convenient and you avoid the crowds. I have more time to think. It makes a difference,” says registered voter Mary Burd.

The Jefferson Parish Registrar of Voters has noticed early voting turnout climbing. That’s why now it’s adding more locations.

“Early voting has grown dramatically. You know people want to vote early rather than on election day. It’ll take time and at the two new locations the number of voters will grow each day as they become familiar with it,” says DiMarco.

For a long time, John Dunn didn’t pay attention to politics or who was running, but soon realized if he wanted to see change, he had to hit the polls. He hopes others against voting realize how much their voice counts.

“If you don’t vote, what you get is not by your choice but someone else’s choice. People just basically tuck their heads in the sand and say, ‘nah my vote doesn’t count.’ Well, it does,” says Dunn.

Election staff reassures Louisianians elections here continue to be free, fair and secure.

“When we count the early voting ballots on election night, the public is more than welcome to come watch the process. The more we can make it transparent, the more people feel confident the results are going to be what they are,” says DiMarco.

If you plan to vote early, you have until Oct. 7, excluding Sunday, Oct. 1. Polls are open from 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

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