New Michigan voter education videos feature ASL to reach voters with disabilities

(Screenshot via Disability Rights Michigan and Promote the Vote)

By Michigan Advance

February 20, 2024


MICHIGAN—Voters with disabilities can access new voter education videos featuring American Sign Language on

As early voting for the Feb. 27 presidential primary is underway, four videos on the website explain in American Sign Language (ASL) how to register to vote for the primary, how to vote early and how to sign up to vote by mail in future elections.

The videos were made from a collaboration with Disability Rights Michigan and Promote the Vote, the group that spearheaded several changes added to the state constitution this year aimed to increase voting accessibility. The groups say they will collaborate for a total of 14 videos this year leading up to each election.

“Promote the Vote’s goal from day one has been to create the most accurate and accessible site for Michigan voters,” Election protection director for Promote the Vote Shira Roza said in a press release Monday. “We are constantly learning from our partners about new ways to present information and improve’s accessibility. No one should be left behind because they couldn’t access accurate information about voting in Michigan, and we maintain to help fill that gap.”

Michiganders with disabilities face barriers for voting in elections, Voter engagement specialist for Disability Rights Michigan Rachel Prevatt said in the press release Monday.

The Michigan Secretary of State’s Office does provide educational and awareness videos for registering to vote, some of which include written graphics in the videos, but the videos use ASL.

English and ASL are separate languages and English closed captioning isn’t an equal substitution for ASL.

The Secretary of State provides voter information about elections online in several languages, but interest groups have advocated for expansions on access including translated ballots and limiting discrimination at the polls.

This coverage was republished from Michigan Advance pursuant to a Creative Commons license. 




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