Caption: ES&S AutoMark Ballot Marking Device (BMD)

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1 VOTING WITH A BALLOT MARKING DEVICE IN NEW YORK CITY You can now choose to use an accessible voting machine called a Ballot Marking Device (BMD). A BMD makes it possible for many voters with disabilities to vote privately and independently. These features include audio for voters who are blind, rocker paddles and a sip and puff switch for voters with physical disabilities, and the ability to increase the ballot size and contrast for voters with low vision. These machines help make sure that people with disabilities can vote as part of their community. The BMD does not count votes; instead it marks your paper ballot. Once you ve made your voting choices, you take your ballot to an optical scanner that reads marked paper ballots and adds up the results. The new BMDs are part of New York s plan to meet the conditions of the federal Help America Vote Act (HAVA) passed in One of the conditions of HAVA is to make sure that voters with disabilities may cast a ballot privately in the same place and way all other voters do. Accessible voting machines are available at every polling site in New York City. The BMD selected by the NYC Board of Elections is the Election Systems &Software (ES&S) AutoMARK. Caption: ES&S AutoMark Ballot Marking Device (BMD) A United Way Agency

2 Page 2/ How Voting Works with a Ballot Marking Device (BMD) Poll workers will make sure that you have the right ballot and help set up the options you want to use. You can decide to use both audio and visual display functions. You can also the ATM-style touch screen, a Braille-enhanced keypad, headphones, a sip-n-puff device or rocker paddle. Caption: Touch-screen, Braille-enhanced Key Pad and Audio Controls for the Ballot Marking Device Caption: Note the Braille markings for each button.

3 Page 3/ Caption: Sip and Puff Device Caption: Two-position Rocker Paddle

4 Page 4/ Visual Display: The ballot can be seen on the touch screen. With this method you can mark your ballot using the touch screen, a keypad, a sip and puff device or rocker paddles. Audio Option: You can listen to the ballot on headphones. With the audio you can mark your ballot using the key pad, the sip and puff device or the rocker paddles. You are able to adjust volume, pause and repeat, and adjust the speed of the audio. The headphone pads have removable covers, and a fresh pair is used for each voter. The covers are replaced by a poll worker who uses latex gloves. A fresh sip and puff switch is used for each voter, and replaced by a poll worker who uses latex gloves. Language Choice: You can also choose a language for your ballot: English, Spanish, or, depending on your district, Mandarin, Cantonese or Korean. Print Size and Contrast: You can change the size of the letters on the screen and change the contrast from a white screen with black text to a black screen with white text. Privacy: Once the poll workers have finished helping you select the voting method you want, the poll workers step back and allow you to vote in private. Voters who use the audio to mark their ballots can press the Screen button to turn off the visual display for privacy. Ballot Layout: The ballot shows one race at a time. Each candidate s name and party appear in a box. You choose a candidate by touching the box on the screen or by selecting it through one of the other voting options (key pad, sip and puff device or rocker paddles). All the candidates for a race may not be on a single page. If a contest has a large number of candidates there may be several screens with choices. You can move through all the choices by following the on-screen or audio instructions. If a particular contest does not appear on your ballot, this is probably because there is no active race in your district. If there is any uncertainty about the ballot, you should tell a poll worker. Checking the Vote: Once you vote for everything, a review screen displays your vote or the audio ballot will read your votes back to you. At this point, you can change any of your votes. The machine will take you back to that contest and its candidates so that you can make the change. Checking it Twice: Once you are satisfied with your votes, a printer will print a copy of your ballot. You can review the printed ballot and if there are any mistakes, this ballot is voided and you are given the chance to vote again. You will have three chances to complete your ballot.

5 Page 5/ If you are blind or cannot read the ballot, you can put it back into the BMD and use the headphones to have the machine read your votes to you. Printing the Ballot: Once the ballot is printed and you agree with your selections, you, your companion or a poll worker (if asked) can put the ballot into a folder to keep it private. You, your companion or a poll worker (if asked) will put the ballot into the scanner to be counted. Election Day Tips: Voters should not be asked if they have a disability, or prove they have a disability to use a BMD. An affidavit ballot is provided if, for some reason, your name is not found in the voter database even though you have registered to vote. This means that you can complete a ballot like anyone else, but this ballot will be put into an envelope so that your registration can be verified later. For more information on how to use the BMD, please visit the NYS Board of Elections website at: This fact sheet was made possible with the support of the New York State Commission on Quality of Care for People with Disabilities. Updated March 2010.

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