In this video, we feature Director of the Self Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE) GoVoter Project, Teresa Moore, who has developmental disabilities. Through her work at SABE, Teresa works to get more people involved in the political process and to advocate for their own inclusion:
“If a person needs help, we want them to have the help they need. But, when you think about voting it is so much about the person’s experiences and their responses to the issues that affect their lives and them wanting to have the right to speak to their legislators or others about what that experience is like…”
However, Teresa points out that not all individuals with disabilities are able to fully advocate for themselves because they are unfairly excluded from the voting process due to guardianship laws, she continues:
“…when they have full guardianship in some states, they are pretty much given the word that ‘you are silent in this issue, and you cannot vote.'”
Teresa points to her own personal experience as something that helps her work with other self-advocates. She closes out by reminding everyone that you should vote for what you are comfortable with and not feel pressured. Teresa says:
“You do not need to know everything about voting to participate. If you have a passion about an issue or a person that you want to select, then you can do that and just do those… It is totally your decision.”
The SABE GoVoter Project is currently collecting responses from individuals with disabilities about their experience voting in this election. This data is invaluable to SABE, NDRN, and countless other disability organizations because it helps us learn how to better educate voters and identify what reforms are needed to make voting easier. You can complete the SABE GoVoter Survey in English or in Spanish.