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Voting Experiences Since HAVA: Perspectives of People with Disabilities

Thursday, April 18, 2024

This EAC report, developed in partnership with Rutgers University, explores how the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) impacted the voting experiences of voters with disabilities since it was passed in 2002. It uses qualitative data from focus groups of voters with disabilities, highlights their perspectives on their voting experiences, and examines how their experiences have changed over time. The report also presents quantitative data from national surveys on voter turnout and accessibility to provide context for exploring focus group discussions. Key findings on HAVA's impact include:

  • Turnout of voters with disabilities has increased since HAVA was adopted.
  • The accessibility of polling places has improved significantly over the last 20 years.
  • There is greater adoption of accessible voting systems in polling places, mail-in voting, and accessible ballot delivery and return.
  • Despite this decrease in the disability voter turnout gap, people with disabilities remain less likely to vote than people without disabilities, in part because of the voting difficulties discussed in this report.

Difficulties still exist for voters with disabilities, but the agency hopes the ongoing research done by the EAC and Rutgers University spotlights the progress election officials have made while acknowledging where there is still work to be done.

Voting Experiences Since HAVA: Perspectives of People with Disabilities (PDF version)

Voting Experiences Since HAVA: Perspectives of People with Disabilities (Word version)