Tips and Facts: Voting in Texas with a Disability

Did you know that Texas was the first state to require all voting systems be accessible to people with disabilities in 1999? Texas has made large strides to make sure polling places support voters instead of hinder them. Here are a few important facts and tips if you or someone you know has a disability and is voting in Texas on November 8th:

  • In every federal election, each Texas polling site is  equipped with least one accessible voting system.  This accessible voting system varies, but typically either assist voters with disabilities to vote directly on the system or assists with marking their paper ballots
  •  All Texas polling locations are ADA compliant 
  • Voters are entitled to assistance at their polling location if they
    • Cannot read or write; or
    • Have a physical disability that prevents them from reading or marking the ballot; or
    • Cannot speak English, or communicate only with sign language, and want assistance in communicating with election officials
  • Voters can be assisted by anyone the person choses who is not an election worker, two election workers on election day or one election worker during early voting
  • Voters may not be assisted by their employer, an agent of their employer or an officer or agent of their union
  • It is illegal for anyone assisting a voter to
    • try to influence the voter’s vote
    • mark the ballot in any way other than how the voter has asked
    • tell anyone how the voter voted
  • If a voter is physically unable to enter the polling place, a voter may request to vote curbside
    • TIP: If you plan to vote curbside, it’s a good idea to call ahead so that the election workers and officials will be expecting you
  • If you do not have reliable or accessible transportation to your polling location, often your local parties will give you a ride
    • TIP: They may not tell you how to vote for in exchange for the ride
  • If you are a person with a disability and are having trouble voting or have questions about voting, call the Disability Rights Texas Voting Rights Hotline: 1-888-796-VOTE (8683) 

JRF urges you to vote on election day and stand up for disability rights! 

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