November 01, 2005
To the Editor:
The Help America Vote Act should not lessen the chance that the votes of disabled persons will be counted. That will happen if we choose the touch-screen machines emphasized by Syracuse University's Center for Human Policy, Law and Disability Studies. Computer security experts warn that electronic voting is unreliable, inaccurate and insecure.
The Onondaga County election commissioners did not acknowledge that the paper-ballot/optical scan voting system includes AutoMARK, a device that allows persons unable to hand-mark a ballot to print their selections on the same ballot used by all other voters.
The National Disability Rights Network has said no one voting machine is accessible to persons with all types of disabilities. But it also notes that "most of the other machines on the market are significantly less accessible to voters with dexterity disabilities" than AutoMARK. In addition, the AutoMARK provides to the visually impaired not only audio access, but also adjustments of font and color, as well as audio voter-verification. The system also is cost-effective.
Voters can regain confidence in our elections with the paper ballot-based system, since it has proven more reliable, verifiable, transparent and secure than electronic voting machines. All of us, disabled or not, want to be sure our votes are counted.
Wanda Warren Berry
Board of Directors
New Yorkers for Verified Voting
© 2005 The Post-Standard.
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