Voting at home can be a convenient and sometimes necessary option for voters who wish to skip the long lines on Election Day. Unfortunately, blind, low-vision and low-mobility voters are too often unable to cast independent ballots using existing inaccessible systems. That’s why disability advocates challenged Ohio’s vote-by-mail system in federal court. They prevailed and the Ohio Secretary of State’s office has now created an accessible remote ballot marking system for these voters.
Ohio’s remote ballot marking system allows voters to request a ballot be securely emailed to them by the Board of Elections. The digital version of the ballot allows the voter to use screen readers and other assistive technology on their computer to cast an independent ballot. Once completed, the voter then prints and returns the ballot to election officials.
Voters with disabilities deserve to have the autonomy to decide how and when they wish to cast their ballot, and the remote ballot marking system makes vote-by-mail a viable option for the first time.
We’ve produced a video in partnership with disability rights activists to explain how to use the system and encourage voters who wish to vote-by-mail to use it. We will also work with disability rights groups to promote the remote ballot marking system directly to their constituents.