In New Mexico, you have the right to the following as protected by federal law. Election staff must respect these rights:
- Accessible voter registration
- Accessible polling places
- Policies and procedures that do not discriminate against you based on your disability
- Accessible, available, and operational voting systems, features
- Your service animal to accompany you inside the polling place
- The right to vote privately and independently or with assistance, if needed
- Assistance from a person of choice, who can be a friend, family member, or poll worker (but not the voter's employer or agent of that employer, an officer or agent of the voter's union, or a candidate whose name appears on the ballot for that current election)
- Election Staff trained to understand the rights above.
Federal law requires assistance in registering to vote from offices that provide public assistance or state-funded programs serving people with disabilities. Responsibilities include:
- Providing voter registration forms
- Assisting voters in completing the forms
- Transmitting completed forms to the appropriate election official
- All aspects of voter registration must be accessible
- You may request assistance from a poll worker or receive assistance from a person of your choice with the following exceptions:
- your employer, an agent of your employer
- an officer or agent of your union
- a candidate on the ballot
- A poll worker cannot force you to accept assistance.
- On your absentee ballot application, if you have a print disability you can request to use an accessible ballot.
- You will be emailed an electronic ballot and then you will have two envelopes mailed to you which will be used to return your ballot.
- You can use screen readers and adaptive technology with this type of ballot.
- You can not receive this type of ballot earlier than 28 days before the election.
Federal law requires polling places to meet minimum compliance standards for individuals with special needs.
If you are unable to stand in line, you can:
- Request to be moved to the front of the line
- Request that a chair be provided
- Request to have your place in line held and notified when it is your turn
You have the option of requesting to use accessible voting equipment at any polling location. The machine should be equipped with options to change screen color scheme, contrast, and font size, to use headphones to allow the system to provide an audio version of the ballot using the tactile interface, and to have low force buttons for you to use.
- You can file a formal complaint form about voting accessibility by mailing one to New Mexico Capitol Annex North, 325 Don Gaspar, Suite 300 Santa Fe, NM 87501 or emailing it to Sos.firstname.lastname@example.org.
- You must sign and date the complaint.
- You must include your name, address, phone number and/or an email address.
- You must include who you are complaining about, their address and their phone number and/or email address.
- You must also include any information relevant to your complaint and any evidence you might have about what happened.
- You can contact Disability Rights New Mexico by phone at (505) 256-3100 or by fax at (505) 256-3184, or by mail at:
3916 Juan Tabo Blvd., NE
Albuquerque, NM 87111
You can alternatively fill out a Violation of Civil Rights Complaint Form and submit it to the US Department of Justice by one of the following methods:
- Online, through the form’s submission process - this is the fastest method.
- By fax at (202) 616-9881. You MUST include “ATTN: Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Complaints" at the top of your fax submission for it to be processed correctly.
- By mailing your form to:
U.S. Department of Justice
Office of the Inspector General
ATTN: Civil Rights & Civil Liberties Complaints
950 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20530
For additional assistance, The National Network of ADA Centers can provide local contact information for other organizations you may wish to contact, including your Regional ADA Center or ADA Knowledge Translation Center, or Federal Agencies and Resources.
- The Disability Rights New Mexico: Voting Rights Page contains additional helpful information in both English and Spanish. Disability Rights New Mexico also provides detailed self-advocacy PDF guides, including:
- New Mexico Voters with Disabilities Portal
- Voter Registration or Absentee Ballot Request
- Election Dates/Deadlines
- Election Official Directory
- US Vote Foundation's Voter Help Desk
- Department of Justice Civil Rights Violation Complaint Form
- Verified Voter Accessible Voting Machine Search
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