SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – Getting to the polls on election day is an important civic duty. That’s why local groups are helping disabled voters prepare for the 2020 election.
People with disabilities are said to have the smallest turnout at the polls.
The League of Women Voters and the Disabilities Resource Center of Siouxland partnered up with Oakleaf Management to give disabled residents of the complex the opportunity to have their votes heard.
“I like to get out and vote. It’s something I fought for so I would like to maintain it as long as I can,” said Owen.
Mikel Owen lives at West Park Apartments and is learning about his voting options even though he has a bad left leg and back he votes.
“A lot more people need to go out and vote, and I know a lot of veterans really want to, but they are not sure how to get to it,” said Owen.
The League of Women Voters and Disabilities Resource Center of Siouxland are working to get the word out to disabled voters.
“It’s usually an afterthought instead of ‘Okay, we should be thinking about this group.’ Not that everybody with disabilities votes the same because nobody does,” said Down Dew the executive director of Disabilities Resource Center.
“A lot of the stuff I do would be harder to do without the resources because you don’t know who to ask. And sometimes if you don’t know who to ask, you don’t get the help you need,” said Katie Thompson, who lives at West Park Apartments.
In addition to informing them of their voting rights and options, residents were also allowed to register to vote.
“A lot of times people feel like their voices don’t count and in a way, they don’t count if they are not registering and if they don’t exercise that option to vote,” said Linda Santi, with Leauge of Women’s Votes.
“If I don’t vote I shouldn’t be able to complain about what is going on,” said Thompson.
Owen says voting makes him proud.
“Just hoping everything goes good and we have a good vote,” said Owen.
Come voting day, there will be several options for disabled voters including, mail-in ballots, free rides to polls and even curbside voting.