Voting access temporarily expanded for blind Michigan citizens

Blind voters can get UOCAVA ballots

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LANSING, Mich. – Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson announced that an agreement had been reached with the Michigan Affiliate of the National Federation of the Blind to temporarily expand voting access for the May 5 elections.

“I am proud we collaboratively identified a temporary solution to expand voting access for blind citizens in Michigan,” said Benson. “I am confident we will continue our work to successfully identify and implement a long-term solution as well. Ensuring all citizens have equal access to their right to vote is a priority for my administration.”

The Bureau of Elections will give blind voters the option of receiving a Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting (UOCAVA) ballot. Those are usually reserved for overseas voters and members of the military.

The Bureau of Elections will make sure the ballots can be completed by blind individuals independently by using electronic screen reader software. Forms for requesting accessible electronic ballots will be available on the Bureau’s website.

Requests for accessible UOCAVA ballots have to be submitted by Tuesday at 4 p.m. You have to also send a declaration that the individual requesting the ballot is blind or otherwise disabled.

Disabled voters can return the ballots to their local clerk in one of the following ways:

  • By hand-delivering them to the clerk’s office by 8:00 p.m. on May 5.
  • By requesting that they be picked up by their local clerk’s office by 4:00 p.m. on May 5.
  • Or by first-class mail postmarked on or before May 5.

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