AAPD Celebrates the Passage of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act in the House
For Immediate Release: 08/25/2021
Contact: Rachita Singh, email@example.com
Washington D.C. – The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) celebrates the passage of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act (H.R.4) in the U.S. House of Representatives. This action represents the first step in making this critical piece of legislation law and preventing further state-level attacks on voting rights —attacks that target disabled people, people of color, and disabled people of color.
This year, many states have restricted voting rights and limited access to the polls, further undercutting the Voting Rights Act of 1965 and showing the desperate need for the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. In Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Iowa, Arizona, and elsewhere, state legislators and governors have enacted policies to restrict access to drop boxes, curbside voting, vote-by-mail options, and more. These laws attempt to diminish our political power and restrict our right to have a say in the policies, people, and decisions that govern and shape our lives.
The Voting Rights Act helped protect the voting rights of people with disabilities, people of color, and disabled people of color. Some of the Voting Rights Act’s key protections came from the requirement that states with a history of discrimination receive permission before changing voting laws. Since the U.S. Supreme Court struck the formula that determined which states fall into this category, many states have enacted laws that restrict the right to vote. Even now, the Texas state legislature is trying to pass a sweeping anti-voting bill with restrictions on vote-by-mail, drive-thru voting, and more.
“As disabled people, we understand deeply how our well-being, our ability to work and live in our communities depends on the policies, people, and funding that our votes impact. Restricting our right to vote is tantamount to restricting our ability to self-direct our own lives,” said Maria Town, AAPD’s President and CEO. “Protecting our right to vote and advancing accessible voting methods could not be more important.”
AAPD urges the Senate to follow the House’s lead and pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. Our access and right to vote must be protected.
The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) is a convener, connector, and catalyst for change, increasing the political and economic power of people with disabilities. As a national cross-disability rights organization, AAPD advocates for full civil rights for the over 61 million Americans with disabilities by promoting equal opportunity, economic power, independent living, and political participation. To learn more, visit the AAPD Web site: www.aapd.com.