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State will have new blind accessible voting terminals in November

Tim Evanson

The state has unveiled new voter assist terminals to help disabled Michiganders vote in the November election.

The terminals will replace older blind-accessible terminals that officials say voters found difficult to use.

Bill Robinson is the Bureau of Services for Blind Persons. He said the new terminals are state of the art.

“If you’re blind what happens is you put a set of headphones on and the actual terminal will allow you to hear the ballot.”

Robinson said the terminal can also be used for the hearing impaired as well.

“There is a lot of applications beyond that. And really anybody could use it.”

Merissa Kovach is with the American Civil Liberties Union. The group is supporting a ballot proposal to increase ease of voting - including having automatic voter registration. Kovach said the terminals are a good start - but the state still has a long way to go.

“We do lag behind. We are at the bottom of the bottom when it comes to different measures to make voting more accessible to our citizens here.”

Kovach said in the past two elections Michigan had some of the longest voting lines in the country - which cuts down on accessibility.

She said allowing voters to vote straight party is a good way to reduce lines.