DES MOINES, IOWA (August 28, 2020) — Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate and Disability Rights Iowa (DRI) are teaming up to provide a Voting Accessibility Quick Check booklet for every polling place in the state. The booklet is a tool for precinct election officials to use to ensure polling places meet American Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements and to quickly recognize and fix any accessibility issues that may arise on Election Day.
“Taking extra time and care to make sure the polling place is as accessible as possible will allow individuals with disabilities to have a positive voting experience when they show up to cast their vote,” Sec Pate said. “We want to provide the counties with as many resources as possible to help them provide the best experience to all voters on Election Day.”
The booklet, which includes information about accessible voting-equipment, spacing, and signage, can be used as measuring tool.
“The Quick Check booklet helps poll workers make the voting experience more welcoming and accessible to people with disabilities,” said Jane Hudson, executive director Disability Rights Iowa. “Increased attention to accessibility will encourage more people with disabilities to participate, making our democratic process more obtainable for all.”
All Iowa polling places are inspected for general ADA compliance. The Voter Accessibility Quick Check booklet is an additional resource for precinct election officials to have on hand to ensure the polling place stays accessible throughout Election Day.
Previously, Sec Pate and Disability Rights Iowa partnered to provide curbside voting signs for every polling place in the state. Curbside voting is available for all Iowans with disabilities and those who might have trouble entering a polling site. COVID-19 is a valid reason to request curbside voting.
The Secretary of State’s Office is also providing personal protective equipment (PPE) and more than $2 million in funds to Iowa counties to protect voters and poll workers on Election Day.