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Early Voting: Accessibility Experiences of 3 Blind Americans

November 4, 2006 • Darrell Shandrow Hilliker


Steve, Karen and I all participated in early voting. While Steve was afforded an accessible, secret ballot, Karen and I certainly were not. Listen to our podcast to hear what happened and learn how you may be able to avoid issues on Election Day. We thank Steve Holmes for taking some of his valuable time to share his accessible voting experience.

If you find that you are unable to cast your vote independently on Election Day, call the following telephone numbers right away:

  • Your local County Recorder’s office.
  • Your state’s Secretary of State’s office.
  • Election Protection Coalition at 1-866-687-8683.
  • Department of Justice at 1-800-253-3931.
  • NFB HAVA National Compliance Hotline at 877-632-1940.

As Americans, it is our patriotic duty and obligation to participate in the democratic process through voting. It is our expectation and hope that all Americans who read this blog and listen to this podcast will have cast an absentee vote, voted early or will vote on Election Day, November 7.

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Categories: voting

2 opinions on “Early Voting: Accessibility Experiences of 3 Blind Americans

  1. Hello Darrell. In all my years of voting, I always had to have sighted assistance. During the most recent time I voted in an election, there was actually an audio ballot at the polling place but it wasn’t functioning. My roommate, however, was kind enough to inform the election judges present that I would be bringing someone along to assist me in the voting process. This was not a problem with anyone. My roommate, who has had deteriorating vision for awhile now, had an election judge assist him. My roommate voted early this year though, because he’s been attending guide-dog training in New York. I called our local county board of elections to report the problems. I guess I’ll just have to see what happens on Tuesday. A fully-sighted neighbor has offered to take me and help cast my ballot, but hopefully I won’t need her assistance in doing so.

  2. Hi Jake,

    A friend brought Karen and I to the early voting location, but we still had one of the election officials help us. We don’t feel it is appropriate to bring someone with us for this purpose, especially now that there are supposed to be means to cast an accessible, secret vote.

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