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Cochise County settles lawsuit over curbside voting for people with disabilities

By Ignacio Ventura
Published: Saturday, November 5, 2022 - 5:49pm

A curbside voting sign
Sky Schaudt/KJZZ
A curbside voting sign at a polling station at Dove of the Desert United Methodist Church in Glendale, Arizona, on Nov. 3, 2020.

The Cochise County Board of Supervisors settled a voter disability discrimination lawsuit on Oct. 31. In 2020, the Arizona Center for Disability Law filed this lawsuit on behalf of Kathleen Hoffard, a County voter living with a disability who was denied curbside voting back in 2018.

According to center staff attorney Sey In, the lawsuit came when the elections department did not make accommodations for Hoffard, who lives with rheumatoid arthritis.

“The elections department, in this case, didn’t do an individualized inquiry into whether the accommodation was reasonable or not. They just flat out denied her,” he said.

The lawsuit sought to make appropriate adjustments for Hoffard. Meaghan Kramer is the managing attorney of healthcare for the center.

“So, we were seeking the ability for Ms. Hoffard to vote curbside, in-person for this upcoming election and for all future elections,” she said.

Under the terms of the settlement, Cochise County would need to take certain actions, like providing curbside voting to individuals with a disability who make a timely request.

 

Politics Elections