Election Time

voting machinesYears ago, after the “hanging chad” election, the electronic voting machine was developed. The developer wanted to make it accessible people with disabilities and I was asked to test the voting machine’s alternative access methods. These methods consist of scanning with switch(s), screen reader, and earphones. I don’t exactly remember how the scanning works but I think if two switches were plugged in, one switch would advance to the next selection box and the other switch would select.  When the earphones were connected it would read the ballet, although I don’t know if the voting machine reads the ballot in Spanish.

The place I voted at during the 2018 midterms had one accessible voting which in use. I could have waited for it but decided to try to reach a standard voting machine (I was in a hurry). I quickly discovered I couldn’t reach it and thought I needed to wait for the accessible machine.  My attendant suggested putting the machine on my lap tray so one of the voting poll staff came over and helped put it on my tray. This was a great accommodation for me.  However, when my husband voted his attendant had to sign an affidavit so she could do the physical selecting on the voting machine.

I find it interesting that the voting staff didn’t ask if we needed any alternative access methods.