The Justice Department today announced a settlement under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) with the city of Flint, Mich., to make all the city’s polling places more accessible for individuals with mobility impairments. The case was commenced based on a complaint from the Michigan Protection and Advocacy Service, and was investigated jointly by the Civil Rights Division and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Eastern District of Michigan.
Under the terms of the settlement, the city of Flint recognizes that accessible polling places are the cornerstone of its voting accessibility program and will make all of its polling places accessible to people with disabilities by the November 2012 elections. The settlement also requires that accessibility will be a major factor in the city’s choices of future polling places. To assist Flint to make its elections accessible, the Justice Department will provide technical assistance to the city in deciding whether a polling place location can be made accessible on Election Day.
“Voters with disabilities in the city of Flint will now have the opportunity to exercise their franchise in the same way as other voters in Flint,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. “We applaud the city’s commitment in ensuring equal access to the polls before the upcoming fall elections.”
“Voting is the foundation of democracy. This agreement will help ensure that people with disabilities have the opportunity to cast their votes at polling places, alongside their neighbors, and have their voices heard.” said Barbara L. McQuade, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan.
More information about this settlement and the ADA is available at the Justice Department’s toll-free ADA Information line at (800) 514-0301 or (800) 514-0383 (TTY) and on the ADA website at www.ada.gov or contact the U.S. Attorney’s civil rights hotline at 313-226-9151.