[NFBMO] In Defense of the Ballot Marking Device

Daniel Garcia dangarcia3 at hotmail.com
Thu Mar 5 01:56:56 UTC 2020

Dear Missouri Federationists:

An article that appeared in the February 24 Kansas City Star questioned the reliability of ballot marking devices (BMDs). These devices are accessible to the blind and they could be used by anyone to vote regardless of sight.


I did not think this article should go unchallenged given the fact that the National Federation of the Blind supports the use of BMDs. As you will remember, we passed a resolution to that effect in our 2019 National Convention in Las Vegas.

With the help of Lou Ann Blake, Deputy Director of Blindness Initiatives at the National Federation of the Blind Jernigan Institute, I was able to write a letter to the editor in defense of BMDs. The letter was published today:


Many times safety has been used to try to deny blind people our rights. Before the passage of white cane laws, blind people could not rent an apartment, or get a life insurance policy. Many people don't think blind people are employable because they presume that blind people are unsafe and many people do not believe that children of blind parents can be safe under their care. And now they are using the security of our electoral system to try to deny us our right to independently cast our own secret ballot.

Best Regards

Daniel Garcia, President, Kansas City Chapter
National Federation of the Blind of Missouri
dangarcia3 at hotmail.com<mailto:dangarcia3 at hotmail.com>
(816) 621-0902
Live the life you want.

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