Election Day 2022 will be here before we know it. Several federal laws protect the voting rights of older Americans and people with disabilities and require accessible polling places.
Here are some voting resources for older adults and people with disabilities:
- USA.gov/Voting has information on how to vote, voter registration requirements and deadlines, and locating your state or local election office website.
- The U.S. Election Assistance Commission offers 10 Tips for Voters with Disabilities (PDF).
- The U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division has more information about voting laws, enforcement actions, and how to file a complaint if you feel your voting rights have been violated.
- Individuals living in long-term care facilities who have concerns about exercising their right to vote can contact their long-term care ombudsman program by looking them up at the National Ombudsman Resource Center.
- Some Area Agencies on Aging and Aging and Disability Resource Centers may offer rides. Visit the Eldercare Locator website to find one in your community.
State Protection and Advocacy Systems (P&As) are another valuable resource. The Voting Access Program, Help America Vote Act (HAVA) administered by ACL, provides funding to P&As to support efforts to ensuring full participation by people with disabilities in the electoral process, including registering to vote, casting a vote, and accessing polling places.
P&As are responsible for the following HAVA activities:
- Full participation in the electoral process;
- Education, training and assistance;
- Advocacy and education around HAVA implementation efforts;
- Training and education of election officials, poll workers, and election volunteers regarding the rights of voters with disabilities and best practices;
- Assistance in filing complaints;
- Assistance to state and other governmental entities regarding the physical accessibility of polling places; and
- Obtaining training and technical assistance on voting issues.
Each P&A determines the best mix of HAVA services to provide based on the needs of their community. To find your state P&A for requesting assistance with voting, visit this website and select your state.
Finally, the Southeast ADA Center has compiled an up-to-date Resource List (PDF) with more information on accessible voting.
Additional voting resources for people with disabilities:
- Voter education from the National Disability Rights Network.
- NC: Voter guides available in various languages and alternative formats.
- ND: Voting webpage, which includes a 30 second voting video and other resources.
- NH: Published voter toolkit and co-hosted a town hall.
- OR: Increased dissemination of its voting guide.
- UT: Educational video about vote-by-mail and access barriers Utah citizens with disabilities face.
- VI: Conducted voting forum.
- WI: Our Voices Our Votes publication created in April 2022.
- WY: Media clip on voting with closed captioning.