April 20, 2020
The hearing is part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to offer additional resources regarding elections and the pandemic
Silver Spring, MD – The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) will host a virtual public hearing on Wednesday, April 22, 2020 from 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. ET to discuss administering elections during the coronavirus pandemic. The hearing will include panels on considerations for the potential increase in absentee and mail voting, as well as considerations for in-person voting, including the needs of voters with disabilities.
As planning continues for elections this year, the EAC is working with state and local election officials and partnering with federal agencies and other key stakeholders to support elections. We are committed to ensuring that we are providing helpful information to allow for the continuity of administering elections despite the issues presented by COVID-19.
As the EAC is charged with serving as a clearinghouse for election administration, Commissioners and staff are actively compiling and posting resources from voting system vendors, state election offices, and federal agencies addressing the coronavirus challenges related to elections, and the required response to allow for contingency planning. Information on absentee and voting by mail, the 2020 CARES Act grant funds, manufacturer disinfecting guidance for election equipment, poll worker resources, and other COVID-19 resources can be found on the EAC’s website. A recording of Wednesday’s hearing will be posted on the EAC’s website.
More information on the virtual hearing can be found on the EAC’s event page.
The EAC is also developing resources to help election officials consider voters with disabilities as they plan for upcoming elections during the pandemic and offering guidance on using CARES Act funds to help voters with disabilities. HAVA requirements related to equal access to voting for individuals with disabilities do not change because of the pandemic. Voters with disabilities must be able to vote privately and independently. Any improvements to systems, equipment and election processes must address accessibility for voters with disabilities. The GCC/SCC COVID-19 working group, chaired by Commissioner Ben Hovland, has published numerous helpful resources, which are available on the EAC’s website. The EAC will be hosting a virtual discussion in the coming weeks to discuss best practices and proven successes to further assist voters with disabilities and the election officials who serve them.
To request additional information, please contact Kristen Muthig at [email protected] or 202-897-9285.
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The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) was established by the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA). It is an independent, bipartisan commission charged with ensuring secure, accurate and accessible elections by developing guidance to meet HAVA requirements, adopting voluntary voting system guidelines, and serving as a national clearinghouse of information on election administration. EAC also accredits testing laboratories and certifies voting systems, as well as administers the use of HAVA funds. For more information, visit www.eac.gov.