2014 Voters with Disabilities Election Report

December 2nd, 2015

PRESS RELEASE

A new study shows that having a disability is not the problem with voting, it is having the accessible equipment, accessible locations and respect to do so.

Cincinnati, Ohio November 30, 2015 – As the country prepares for the 2016 Presidential Election, how prepared are Election Officials to meet the voting needs of people with disabilities?  A survey conducted by Self Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE), a national organization lead by people with disabilities for people with disabilities, on the accessibility of the 2014 Election found:

  • 27% of voters, who used wheelchairs, had problems moving around the voting area
  • 11% of the voters reported poll workers treated them like they were NOT able to vote
  • 17% of the voters said the accessible voting machines were not up and running when they arrived at the polling location
  • 11% of the voters self-reported they did not know how to operate the accessible equipment
  • 21% of the poll workers did not provide clear instructions on how to use the accessible voting equipment
  • 19% of voters, who used Absentee Ballots, did so because they felt they could not vote privately at the polling location

The Help America Vote Act (HAVA) passed in 2000 outlines specific regulations that all Elections must follow:

  • be held in accessible locations
  • use ballots that encourage people to vote rather than discourage
  • allow voters to cast their ballot privately and independently

This study finds the greatest barrier to voting for people with disabilities is the lack of knowledge of poll workers.

Click the link to read the 2014 Election Report link