Disability and Voting: A Crucial Conversation Hosted by Evergreen

May 20, 2024
Press Release

OLYMPIA – The Evergreen State College is proud to host an enlightening event titled "Disability and Voting," scheduled from 4 to 5 p.m. Tuesday, May 21. The event will take place in Purce Hall with a reception to follow.

The college welcomes the community to a thought-provoking conversation with esteemed co-directors of the Program for Disability Research at Rutgers University, Lisa Schur and Doug Kruse. The program explores the efforts being made to increase voting access and discusses the remaining challenges.

"The right to vote is a cornerstone of American democracy,” said Dr. Greg Mullins, Dean for Evergreen’s Library and Learning Support. “Many voters with disabilities appreciate Washington's mail-in ballots, and other options are needed to make voting accessible to all. Researchers like Schur and Kruse help us understand where we can improve.”

According to alarming statistics, if people with disabilities voted at the same rate as otherwise similar people without disabilities, there would be an additional two million voters in U.S. elections. Recognizing the importance of amplifying marginalized voices, Evergreen is committed to addressing the barriers that hinder individuals with disabilities from exercising their right to vote.

Founded in 2000, the Program for Disability Research at Rutgers University conducts groundbreaking research aimed at informing public policy and fostering positive social change. In a 2020 peer review, Rutgers University was ranked #1 globally for disability and employment research.

Professor Lisa Schur is a distinguished scholar who received the 2002 Best Article award from Political Research Quarterly for her seminal work on "Enabling Democracy: Disability and Voter Turnout." She is the founder of the Disabilities Studies minor at Rutgers University and a co-founder of the Program for Disability Research.

Dr. Doug Kruse, a leading authority in the field, has co-authored several influential books, including "The Citizen’s Share: Reducing Inequality in the 21st Century" and "People with Disabilities: Sidelined or Mainstreamed?" He served as a Senior Economist at the White House Council of Economic Advisors from 2013-2014.

For more information on this event, please contact Dean Mullins at mullinsG@evergreen.edu.