SALEM – Last fall, Oregon became the first state in the nation to use iPads to mark ballots. The successful project was piloted in five Oregon counties. After evaluating the results of the pilot project it was clear that using the tablets improves access for voters with special needs, is easier for counties to administer, and is more cost-effective.
“Nearly 200 Oregonians used the iPad to mark their ballots during the pilot,” said Secretary of State Kate Brown. “We can do better. I am proud to expand the availability of this technology statewide to serve all Oregonians who may have accessibility needs. My goal is to make the ballot more accessible to all eligible Oregonians.”
Using federal Help America Vote Act dollars, the Secretary of State’s Elections Division provided each of Oregon’s 36 counties with at least one iPad and printer for use in the May Primary. Oregon Elections continued its successful partnership with Everyone Counts, the developer of the software that drives the system. The iPads replace an old system that was expensive to maintain and difficult to use. Oregon Elections provided county staff with the training needed to assist voters.
On Friday, May 11, 2012 Oregon Elections and the Washington County Voter Assistance team will visit Avamere Rehabilitation, an assisted living facility in Beaverton. The team will have iPads available for voters with special needs to use and mark their ballots. In an effort to explore the newest technology available for those with special needs, Oregon Elections invited Dr. Juan Gilbert, a professor and chairman of the Human-Centered Computing Division in Clemson University’s School of Computing to attend. During his visit Dr. Gilbert will demonstrate new software he is developing to assist voters with disabilities. Dr. Gilbert and his team will be present, along with representatives from Portland State University, University of Washington and Intel.
For more information, please contact
Oregon Secretary of State