Guam- For the first time in recent memory, Assistive Technology is being used to help those with special needs to cast their votes in the Primary Election.
The Guam Legal Services Disability Law Center and Guam Systems for Assistive Technology have created kits for the Guam Election Commission (GEC) to make it easier for individuals with disabilities to vote in the coming elections. GEC has already trained people for all 58 precincts to know how to use communication boards and other tools that will empower more people to exercise their right to vote.
“For example, for somebody that has a vision impairment or low vision, they have a full page magnifier” said Guam Legal Services Advocate Michelle Cruz. “Where in the past, it’s just been a smaller one…so it’s been a little bit difficult to magnify the entire the ballot.”
Assistive Technology Professional Carla Torres added, “Although these AT tool kits won’t resolve all the accessibility issues of voting here on Guam, it’s definitely going to help tremendously. Something as very simple as a pencil grip, a different way of holding a pencil could help somebody with Parkinson’s, who has shaking hands.”
Work is also being done to obtain Assistive Technology machines to be used in future elections on Guam.