[nfbwatlk] voting in Kitsap county
Prows, Bennett (HHS/OCR)
Bennett.Prows at HHS.GOV
Fri Oct 5 13:42:01 UTC 2012
Cindy and All,
I agree that we took a step forward when we had poll/precinct voting, and we could go in and use an accessible machine. The mail in ballots used on Oregon, Washington and perhaps a few other states now, isn't independently usable by blind folks. Readers are still needed, if you don't find the county elections office or another "drop off" cite where there are in some cases voting machines still available.
The on-line project in Kitsap County is a pilot, but the elections official there says he hopes the program can go state wide perhaps by the next election. The Secretary of State's election division accessibility coordinator, Tom Allman is working to continue to make the voting process more accessible to us. As a matter of fact, as a former talk show host on the Evergreen Radio Reading Service's weekly talk show, (now discontinued of course), I have interviewed Tom, and other county and state officials about the elections processes. WE had a number of callers expressing opinions about the travel and wait time issues, etc. The shows are available to hear on the WTBBL web site, in the archives of the Evergreen Radio Reading Service.
But nevertheless, as they say, we took one step forward, and a half a step back in ballot usability and accessibility. We'll keep on, and Cindy, I think your call with NABS is an excellent device for educating the voters, and stimulating more action in all the states.
From: nfbwatlk [mailto:nfbwatlk-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf Of Cindy
Sent: Thursday, October 04, 2012 9:21 PM
To: NFB of Washington Talk Mailing List
Subject: Re: [nfbwatlk] voting in Kitsap county
I agree that the accessible voting machines are very liberating. In NC, where I am from, everyone goes to their polling place to vote. However, Washington has a vote by mail procedure which is inaccessible to blind people unless they receive sighted assistance. We can still go to a precinct and use the accessible ballot. But they are unfortunately much more far and few between thus adding to the travel time and wait time. This concept is particularly disappointing to me as a new resident. And if there is a county that has an alternative in place, then I think that it would be worth researching and seeing what we can do, if anything, to suggest this online system in other counties.
Sent from my iPhone
On Oct 4, 2012, at 3:19 PM, debby phillips <semisweetdebby at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Cindy, many counties, if not all in Washington have accessible voting machines. I was the first one in Stevens County to use ours. I admit it, tears filled my eyes as I voted by myself, secretly. It was a far cry from the first time I voted, having my mom mark my ballot. (Not that I didn't trust her, I did, but it was just kind of uncomfortable). We use the eSlate in Stevens County, but some other counties use the Automark. Peace, Debby
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