Disability Rights

Equal Access to the Ballot for Deaf Voters

09.22.16

The ACLU of Ohio has launched a new webpage to answer the voting questions of individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. Our instructional videos and links to the ACLU of Ohio Vote Center answer common questions about updating and checking a voter’s registration, submitting a vote by mail ballot, or seeking accommodations at a local board of elections.

Although there are published materials to walk voters through the process of registering, these tools are not always accessible for Deaf individuals. Accessibility is difficult because many deaf or hard of hearing people have reading comprehension challenges resulting from public schools lacking the funding or political will to hire certified American Sign Language interpreters to enhance Deaf students’ educations. Many students languish in classrooms or remedial classes that do not match their intellectual abilities or capacity to learn. They also exit secondary school without understanding certain civic ideas necessary to vote on the issues affecting their communities.

The ACLU of Ohio has created ASL videos to help address some of these barriers and challenges. We hope that by sharing this resource, more deaf voters will sense the urgency of going out to the polls and making their voice heard this November.

Go to the ACLU of Ohio’s Deaf Voting Rights page.