Oregon Resources for Voters with Disabilities

What are my rights as a voter with a disability in Oregon?

In Oregon, 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 your boss, union agent, or a candidate unless this person is your family member)
  • Election Staff trained to understand the rights above.

In Oregon, you also have the Oregon Voter Bill of Rights which grants your the right to:  

  • vote even if you are unhoused
  • vote if you have been convicted of a felony but have been released from custody, even if you are on probation or parole
  • vote even if you have a guardian and even if you need help reading or filling out your ballot
  • vote or cast your ballot if you are in line by 8 PM on Election Day
  • know if you are registered to vote
  • choose whether or not you want to register as a member of a political party
  • use a signature stamp or other mark but first you have to fill out a form. No one can sign for you.
  • ask for help from elections staff or from a friend or family member. There are some people who cannot help you vote, for example, your boss or a union officer from your job
  • cast a secret vote. You do not have to tell anyone how you voted. 
  • get a "provisional ballot", even if you are told you are not registered to vote
  • get a new ballot if you make a mistake
  • vote for the person you want. You can write in someone else's name if you don't like the choices on your ballot.
  • vote "yes" or "no" on any issue on your ballot
  • leave some choices blank on your ballot. The choices you do mark will still count.
  • use a voting system for all Federal Elections that makes it equally possible for people with disabilities to vote privately and independently
  • know if your ballot, including a "provisional ballot", was accepted for counting
  • file a complaint if you think your voting rights have been denied
Who can register to vote?

To register in Oregon, you must be: 

  • A citizen of the United States of America
  • At least 18 on or before Election Day 
  • A resident

If you are a student, unhoused, a survivor of intimate partner violence with related concerns, or living with a mental or physical impairment, you may still register and vote.

In Oregon, you may not register or vote if:

  • Have been declared mentally incompetent, unless your right has been restored 
  • You are incarcerated, though your right is restored upon release even if on parole or probation

Register to vote now if you are eligible!

What are my rights when registering to vote?

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 

Oregon provides videos with ASL and captions to help with registration.

What are the different ways to vote in Oregon?

Oregon has all by-mail voting. 

  • You can mail in your ballot for free (no postage necessary). 
  • Or you can drop off your ballot to an official voting drop box. Find my Drop Box

Oregon also offers accessible online voting for voters with disabilities.

What are the ways to request an Absentee Ballot in Oregon?

Ballots will be mailed automatically to the address listed on your voter registration record. All registered voters receive a ballot two to three weeks before an election. If you want to receive a ballot by mail to an address other than the one you are registered to vote at, you must submit an application for a mail-in ballot.

For information about getting an accessible on-line ballot, call your County Elections Office or 866-673-8683. Use TTY: 800-735-2900 for hearing impaired voters.

How is the Oregon mail-in or absentee ballot process made accessible for voters with print disabilities?
  • Oregon offers an online accessible ballot to voters.
    • If you use a tablet to view your online accessible ballot, you can change the font size, colors, and contrast of the electronic ballot.
    • The online ballots also work with your own assistive devices such as sip-and-puff devices and screen readers which will read out the ballot for those with print disabilities.
    • You can access this type of accessible ballot on MyVote.
    • You need to be registered to vote to access the ballot. You have to submit your registration 21 days before the election in order to be eligible to vote in that election.
       
  • You can also contact your local elections office or 866-673-8683 for help with voting.
What accommodations are available for voters with disabilities at polling locations in Oregon?

Oregon accommodates voters with mail-in ballots and accessible on-line ballots. If you need further accommodations or have questions, please contact your local elections office or 866-673-8683 for help with voting.

What are the rules of assistance for disabled voters in Oregon?
  • 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
       
  • An election official cannot force you to accept assistance.
     
  • Someone can help you with a Signature Stamp Attestation form if you are unable to sign your ballot.
     
  • You can also receive assistance with the voting process from a Facility Assistance Team if your living facility has one. A Facility Assistance Team is made up of two members from two different political parties.
How can I prepare to use accessible voting equipment in Oregon prior to Election Day?

You can check out a demo ballot to see how Oregon’s accessible online ballot operates. Contact your local election official for more information.

Who do I contact if I have problems when voting in Oregon?

You can contact the Oregon Secretary of State Elections Division at 866-673-8683 (866-ORE-VOTE) or elections.sos@sos.oregon.gov​ with any questions you have about voting.

To file a formal complaint about voting accessibility, mail the form to 255 Capitol St NE Suite 501, Salem OR 97310, fax it to 503-373-7414, or email it to elections.sos@oregon.gov.

  • You must get the form notarized and sign the complaint under oath. 
  • The complaint must be made in writing.

You can call Disability Rights Oregon at 800-452-1694

You can also 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 Investigations Division
                 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.