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Voting is a way to decide what a group wants or who the group wants to represent them. We vote for President, Governor, Mayor, Town Council Members, State Legislators such as Assembly and Senate, and for Members of Congress.Voting is a way for us to voice our opinion about who should represent us. Our elected leaders are picked by people voting in the community. As citizens we elect people who agree with our ideas and feelings about things. We vote for people we think can work for us and solve our problems. We vote for people we trust to help us and who will set the right rules for government.
There is a wealth of helpful information available for people with developmental disabilities who want to learn more about voting and their rights as American citizens. From finding out how and where to vote, to making sure we’re registered, to letting others know when our voting locations are inaccessible or presenting other barriers to voting, there are organizations and individuals who can help out at every step of the process.
Voting Guide – “Voting – It’s Your Right!”
This helpful guide, developed by the Elizabeth Boggs Center on Developmental Disabilities at Rutgers University in collaboration with Disability Rights New Jersey and the NJCDD, explains the whole process of voting. Learn why voting is so important, how to fill out a vote-by-mail form, what to expect when visiting a polling station, and more
Protection and Advocacy for Voter Access (PAVA) Program
Disability Rights New Jersey’s PAVA Program ensures that every eligible person with a disability has the opportunity to vote on Election Day. Click the link for a full list of resources to help you through the voting process.
RevUP! New Jersey
For the 2016 Election season, the Alliance Center for Independence has been conducting a grassroots campaign to urge all New Jersey residents with disabilities to vote. Visit the RevUP! New Jersey webpage to learn more and get involved.
Register to Vote
Before we can vote, we first have to register with the State of New Jersey to do so. The process is easy, and can be done online or by mail.
Click here to get started. Remember, you must be at least 18 years old to vote on Election Day. The deadline to register for this year’s election is Tuesday, October 17. Election Day will be help this year on Tuesday, November 7.
Find you Polling Station
Once you register to vote, you will be assigned a specific location where you will go to vote on Election Day. This location is chosen based on your home address, and is usually at a public location (such as a school, church, or government building) nearest to where you live. Click here to find out the location of YOUR polling station.
Learn About Your Candidate
If we Don’t Vote, we can’t complain about the leaders we get.
Most of the time, several people may be running for the same position at the same time. When you vote, it is important to make sure that you are casting your vote for someone whose beliefs about how our community should be run are similar to your own.
While this may seem like a challenge, there are many resources available to help you learn more about the candidates running in an election.
RespectAbilityUSA.com has been closely following this year’s election, reporting on all issues important to Americans with disabilities. View their RespectAbility Report to learn more about the candidates and how disability issues are influencing this election season