National Disability Rights Network Commends Introduction of Voting Rights Advancement Act
NDRN heading to Roanoke tomorrow to urge Congress and Rep. Goodlatte to restore VRA

For Immediate Release             
Juen 24th, 2015                        

Contact:    
Dara Baldwin
202.408.9514 x102
press@ndrn.org

WASHINGTON – The National Disability Rights Network issued the following statement after today’s introduction of the Voting Rights Advancement Act by Senators Patrick Leahy, Dick Durbin, and Chris Coons and Representatives John Lewis, Terri Sewell, Linda Sanchez and Judy Chu:

“NDRN would like to thank the sponsors of the Voting Rights Advancement Act for introducing a bill that will restore some of the most vital voting rights protections lost in the Supreme Court’s Shelby County v. Holder decision,” stated NDRN's Executive Director Curt Decker, “the Voting Rights Act is one of the most important pieces of voting rights legislation in our nation's history, and Congress should act to restore it.”

NDRN and the Protection and Advocacy Network in every state and territory have witnessed, through the Protection and Advocacy for Voter Access (PAVA) program, that the movement of polling places and changes to state and local election laws impact voters with disabilities as much as any other American. The Voting Rights Advancement Act will ensure that accessible polling places are available to all Americans and that crucial public notices provided to voters are available in formats accessible to voters with disabilities. “Effective leadership is needed at all levels to protect voters, Mr. Decker continued, “the Voting Rights Advancement Act is an important first step, and we hope it will start a larger national discourse on elections administration and next steps toward ensuring access to the vote for all, including people with disabilities.”

Despite widespread evidence of voting discrimination, Congress has failed to restore the crucial protections of the Voting Rights Act. Tomorrow on the two-year anniversary of the Shelby decision, NDRN staff will travel to Roanoke, Virginia to join hundreds of concerned Americans in a rally for voting rights and democracy. Congress and House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte must know that they cannot continue to let voting discrimination run rampant through our country unconstrained. With two bills—the Voting Rights Advancement Act and the Voting Rights Amendment Act—to restore the VRA, Congress can and should act on this issue.

NDRN urges Congress to take swift action to ensure that Americans will not experience the first presidential election in more than 50 years without the crucial protections of the Voting Rights Act.

 

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The National Disability Rights Network (NDRN) is the nonprofit membership organization for the federally mandated Protection and Advocacy (P&A) Systems and the Client Assistance Programs (CAP) for individuals with disabilities. Collectively, the Network is the largest provider of legally based advocacy services to people with disabilities in the United States.