Making Democracy Work

Voters with Disabilities

Your rights and how to handle election day problems

Your Rights

YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO VOTE. The US Constitution guarantees the right to vote to all American Citizens who are at least l8 years old. Michigan election law requires that you live in Michigan, are registered in your town or city of residence and are not currently serving a prison or jail sentence.

YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO ACCESS YOUR LOCAL POLLING PLACE. The Americans with Disabilities Act Title II prevents discrimination on the basis of disability in the "services, programs, or activities of all state and local governments." Michigan election law requires accessibility in the elections process which is defined as: "the removal or modification of policies, practices, and procedures that deny an individual with a disability the opportunity to vote, including the removal of physical barriers . . . so as to ensure individuals with disabilities the opportunity to participate in elections in this state."

YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO CAST A SECRET BALLOT. As of the August 2006 primary election, new accessible voting devices located in each polling place enable voters with various types of disabilities to cast a ballot privately and independently.

YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO REQUEST ASSISTANCE WITH MARKING AND CASTING YOUR BALLOT. As a person with a disability, you have the right to have a family member or friend of your choice accompany you into the booth (cannot be your employer or an officer/agent of a union to which you belong), or two poll workers of declared different party affiliations may assist you upon your request.

YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO CAST AN ABSENTEE BALLOT. Michigan election law stipulates that anyone who identifies as being a person with a disability, as it is legally defined, has the right to vote by absentee ballot.

Election Day Problems?

CALL ONE OF THESE HOTLINES:

1-866-OUR-VOTE (866-687-8683)

1-888-VE-Y-VOTA (en Espaņol)

1-888-API-VOTE (Asian multilingual assistance)

1-844-418-1682 (Arabic)