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Dona Ana County's Voting Options For People With Disabilities

It’s Voter Registration week, and the Dona Ana County Clerk’s office is working to make sure everyone who is able to is registered to vote. Part of that is making sure all voters know how easy it is to make it to the voting booth.

Scott Krahling, Chief Deputy County Clerk for Dona Ana County says the clerk’s office has many voting options for people with disabilities.

“The voting tabulator has a lot of accessibility options,” Krahling said. “So, folks that have a hard time reading or are blind, there are different options with that equipment there.”  

Terry Kebbel, has been totally blind for 14 years, he tested a voting machine with headphones that reads the ballot and helps you fill it out with a keypad.

Kebbel says when he’s voting he can turn the monitor off and keep his voting decision secret.  He says it’s important for him to vote independently.

“I can’t even explain how important it is,” Kebbel said. “And it’s just such a valuable asset to my life. To really be able to participate in the community, to be able to go to a voting booth, sit down, and to be able to vote on my own through this little type of device here.”

Chief Deputy Clerk Scott Krahling says they work to make voting easy and accessible to everyone.

“You know somebody that’s just injured,” Krahling said. “We had somebody in the primary election that broke her leg, and wasn’t able to get in and out of her car very easily. She called and we went ahead and set up the curbside voting option for her. So folks that just have a hard time just getting in and out of their vehicle that want to come vote early or on election day, we do have a curbside voting option.”

Krahling says the clerk’s office can work with individuals to make sure they are comfortable with the equipment before Election Day.

“If somebody has a disability or is injured and just wants more information about voting you can go to our website to learn a little bit more,” Krahling said. “Or you can just call us, come into our office, if somebody has a disability and they think they want to use the accessible voting option, give us a call come into our office they are welcome to go through it with us. We try to take it out to our outreach events so we can demonstrate it to folks out in the community. But we also realize that it may be easier for people to come into our office and spend some one on one time with us to go through it.”

For more visit donaanacounty.org/elections. The final day to register to vote is October 11th. For more information on how to register to vote visit KRWG.org

Samantha Sonner was a multimedia reporter for KRWG- TV/FM.