Justice Department says Alaska violating rights of disabled voters

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The Justice Department announced its findings that Alaska Division of Elections violated Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act by failing to provide an accessible ballot for in-person voting, selecting inaccessible polling places for federal, state, and local elections and for maintaining an inaccessible elections website.

The ADA requires that states’ voting services, programs and activities be accessible to individuals with disabilities.  

For REAA elections in Alaska — the rural unorganized boroughs for education board elections — the Justice Department complains that the state does not provide an accessible voting machine in any polling station and only provides paper ballots with offers of assistance from poll workers.

“Voters with disabilities faced obstacles voting in the October 2023 REAA election in which only paper ballots were available. One voter with a vision disability, after being told that no magnification device was available, required assistance to vote using a
paper ballot. Another voter with disabilities who has difficulty walking, moving, writing, and talking struggled to complete the paperwork but poll workers failed to offer any assistance. Both voters stated that they would have preferred voting on an accessible machine, privately andindependently, but no accessible machine was available,” the complaint says.

“During federal and state elections, the State offers absentee in-person and Election Day voting. It provides in-person early voting in Juneau, the Anchorage area (Anchorage, Wasilla, Eagle River, and Palmer), Fairbanks, Nome, Homer, and Soldotna. Although the state claims that it provides accessible machines during early voting and on Election Day, not all early voting
and Election Day sites had an accessible machine and at some sites the accessible machine was not operational. The State does not provide accessible voting machines at absentee in-person voting sites,” the Justice Department complaint said.

“For too long, people with disabilities have been denied the fundamental rights and freedoms that citizens of our democracy possess, including the opportunity to fully participate in the voting process,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “The Justice Department is fully committed to enforcing the ADA to make sure that individuals with disabilities have an equal opportunity to vote, including by voting privately and independently like everyone else.”

“Voting is a fundamental right for all American citizens and ensuring they have full access to the election process is a hallmark of our democracy,” said U.S. Attorney S. Lane Tucker for the District of Alaska. “The U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue to collaborate with the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division to work toward accessibility in voting for all Alaskans.”

The department opened its investigation in response to complaints from individuals with disabilities in Alaska alleging accessibility issues.

Voters with disabilities reported that they could not vote privately and independently because accessible voting machines were unavailable or did not work, that they encountered inaccessible polling places and that they could not obtain key election information on the state’s election website.

The Alaska investigation is part of the department’s ADA Voting Initiative, which focuses on protecting the voting rights of individuals with disabilities across the country.

23 COMMENTS

  1. Sounds like alot of overpaid, most probably college educated people running elections, and government bureaucrats looking to justify their expense to the public.

    • Unless you are disabled then even mrak likes to censure your message. You cant disagree w any of them if you are.disabled these a holes couldn’t care less about healthcare, legal integrity, the constitution, history or cohesion in law – basically alaska is GCI ,CIRI & Public broadcasting, they ate your mamma! I dont.even get notices now that mrak is sold out to the losers from kenai – aka CIRI town. They truly disadvantaged people& denies access to healthcare let alone voting or havent you noticed not hardly anyone w a disability in juneau, alaska the state capitol, why? Who can get there? The south east tribes violate everyones constitutional rights and steal from people all the time in the name of culture, disagree w them and you get a one way ticket out of alaaka. Whatever, you are the problem. Manipulating the public is all they can do? They destroy disability advocates if they dont kiss ciri’s ass. Gueas what? Ciri, southcentral foundation coltfoot llc and citc are the same company and have covered up major medical errors, we do not belong to southcentral foundation, is not a native corporation, it has no members, itbis an investment firm enriching ciri shareholders. I want them out of my life amd held accountable.

  2. WHAT ABOUT LISA & RANK CHOICE VOTING & OATH BREAKERS WHO MOCK GOD CONSTITUTION & WE THE PEOPLE?? & MOST OF ABSOLUTELY ALL AN OATH TO GOD MATTERS FIRST & FOREMOST TO GOD. WHO POLICES THAT STUFF JUSTICE DEPARTMENT???????? OF NO INTEGRITY & JUSTICE FOR THE SELECT FEW??????????????

  3. Somehow paper ballots weren’t a problem for like 175 years. Interesting how the current DOJ attacks anyone or anything that stands in the way of cheating. I’m taking a wild guess that someone is behind the complaints filed by those severely disabled voters. Paging Scott Kendall!

  4. Hmmm, the evil took note that Phil Izon is working to petition to get rid of the machines I am guessing!

  5. The only reason one would demand voting machines is to diddle the elections. Otherwise, they bring nothing positive to the process. Cheers –

  6. I get a kick that Must Read writes an article titled …” Justice Department says Alaska violating rights of disabled voters”, but can’t seem to find the time to write about what is a far BIGGER issue that affects ALL Alaskans.
    A Kenai Grand Jury report on ‘systemic Judicial corruption’ was released to Judge Matthews more than one year ago. Why won’t the media DEMAND this report from Matthews? Can you imagine what the citizens of Alaska could learn about the entire judicial system in this State?
    Please demand this constitutionally guaranteed report people!

    • In addition, there is another petition to get the grand jury report released!

      ‘https://alaskagrandjurorsassociation.org/petition-2/

  7. Who would have thought it.
    pResident Briben’s DOJ is meddling in the voting processes of a red state. What are the odds.
    (And, yes, I know… AK is barely red any more. Please save the bandwdith and sty on topic.)

    • We are no longer red. We voted a republican majority ito our state legislature and they pissed it away and gave up key positions to LET democrats run our state.

  8. Just about everyone has a phone that can magnify images. If someone has an issue with reading in their life, they have had plenty of time to figure out how to overcome this obstacle before arriving to vote. Buy a magnifying glass.
    How do these people get through the day if they are so “disabled” that they cannot put a pen down into a piece of paper? The self victimhood mentality is only going to continue to lead to ineptocracy.
    If people cannot help or provide for themselves, someone has to be paid to wipe their butts. If someone is too disabled to vote, maybe they should not vote.

  9. AS a 170% (according to the gov) A VN Vet and have lived all over AK over the past 50 plus year. I’ve never had a problem voting.

    • As a fellow disabled veteran, i have NEVER had issues voting.
      This is another farce brought to you by the democrat party.
      Fakers all the way.

  10. What do we expect from the Fed? Sanity? No way. I had the displeasure of trying to have a conversation of logic with a Corp of Engineers employee last week. Good luck with that folks. These arrogant lifetime employees could t care less about We the People. They scorn us.

  11. Perhaps one or two billion of our tax dollars could be diverted from Ukraine to pave the parking lots in rural Alaska. Lisa Murkowski, what say you?

  12. I was listening to a radio show earlier and a voter was talking about how the election worker wouldn’t let her mother help her vote. You see, she has intellectual disabilities and didn’t know how to vote. I know many won’t agree, but seriously…if you are intellectually disabled, and you can’t understand the issues, WHY IN THE WORLD WOULD SOMEONE LIKE THAT BE ALLOWED TO VOTE? See, what happens is whoever is “helping” them, will TELL them how to vote…so in effect, the helper is getting an extra vote based on their own desire!

    • I have to agree with your statement KKirk. I am sure that there will be a bunch of people whose panties get in a wad over that statement though. Lol

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