Voting

4-5 minute read

Voting icon. A hand makes the thumbs up sign.Our Position

CTD supports legislation that protects the rights of all Texans with disabilities to participate fully in the voting process, including: accessible voting technologies at all polling locations, the elimination of architectural and communication barriers at polling locations, and protecting the rights of eligible voters to participate in elections.

In 2021, CTD’s goals continue to be:

Through the wins and losses in the 87th regular and both specials sessions, we played a vital role in many of the negotiations, while continually reinforcing that election measures lose any semblance of integrity once they interfere with the reasonable, necessary, and legally protected accommodations for voters with disabilities that have already been in place and working well.

The Latest

September 8: REV UP Texas' Bob Kafka on new voting laws: "We're going to do everything to try to educate our people and keep the turnout going, but it is right now sending a chilling effect." New voting law changes won’t take effect anytime soon in Bexar County, elections administrator says

September 5: Read our latest blog on where we landed with voting legislation at the close of the 2nd special session

August 23: Let’s work together to make voting accessible, secure for all

June 23: CTD joins a coalition of disability organizations urging lawmakers to protect the disability vote when they reconvene for a special session PDF (read statement as )

NOTE: If you vote by mail, make sure the signatures on your Ballot by Mail Application and ballot match as closely as possible. Otherwise, your vote may be thrown out. Get updates on the 2020 mail-in ballot layout plus, tips on working with your post office from the Center on Civic Design.

Partners

American Council of the Blind of Texas

REV UP! Texas

Background

CTD has worked to protect the voting rights of Texans with disabilities and promote voting within this community since our foundation in 1978. For example, for many years, we successfully opposed Voter ID bills in the Texas legislature, which would have restricted access to the voting process. In 2011, the legislature did pass a Voter ID bill, but one with a CTD amendment that allows a person with a disability to claim an exemption from the new requirements.

In 2019, voter rights were once again the spotlight. SB 9 (Hughes) proposed new requirements for providing assistance to voters with disabilities, including potential criminal penalties for honest mistakes. CTD joined a coalition of disability, voting, and civil rights organizations in expressing major concerns about the constitutional legality of SB 9, as well as the chilling effect it could have had on the number of people willing to assist Texas voters with disabilities. Thanks to the push back from this coalition, SB 9 lost the momentum and support it would have needed to pass the House. SB 9 was a priority bill for state leaders, and stopping the bill is a major achievement. Read the voting coalition's full letter to the Senate


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