Glancy v. Morrow County Board of Elections
United States District Court
Southern District of Ohio
Carol Glancy, et al., Plaintiffs v. Morrow County Board of Elections, et al., Defendants
Case MP/C-2-82-991, Judge Holschuh
Consent Judgment Between Plaintiffs and Defendant Sherrod A. Brown, Secretary of State of Ohio
This matter came before the Court on the Complaint and Amended Complaint of the Plaintiffs. Jurisdiction is proper under Title 28 U.S. Code Sections 1331 and 1343(3) and (4). The Plaintiffs and Defendant Brown stipulate that the standards implemented by this order are to protect the rights of mentally disabled voters such as the Plaintiffs in this case to participate fully in the electoral process. Without admitting liability and without admitting that he has failed to engage in the practices required by the order, Defendant Sherrod A. Brown consents to the following order. This order settles all claims raised against this Defendant or his predecessor in office or their employees. Plaintiffs agree to waive any right to seek fees or costs, including attorneys fees, from this Defendant. Claims raised by the Plaintiffs against the remaining Defendants are unresolved and pending in this case, but there is no just reason for delay in implementation of this final Consent Judgment between the Plaintiffs and Defendant Brown.
Therefore, it is ORDERED, ADJUDGED, and DECREED that Sherrod A. Brown, Secretary of State of Ohio, his agents, employees, assigns, successors 'in office, and all those in active concert and participation with him are enjoined to comply with the following requirements, and to advise and direct the same as requirements for elections officials in all counties in the State of Ohio, to wit:
Any person wishing to register to vote may do so by mail, in person, or through another person;
- Registration creates a presumption in favor of capacity to vote. This presumption remains, absent a finding by a probate court that the person is specifically incompetent to vote after a record hearing on that issue. Notification of any such finding to the Board of Election and elector shall be completed at least thirty days prior to the election in question. Any finding of incompetency not meeting these criteria is not operative with respect to the right to vote.
- Prior to removing an elector who has been found to be specifically incompetent to vote from the rolls of electors, the board of elections shall send notice by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the elector.
- This section should not be read to limit or prevent the challenges which can be made against all voters' qualifications to vote as defined in the Ohio Revised Code.
III. POLLING PLACES
- Poll workers shall make every effort to assist the voter in identifying himself/herself and in all other matters at the polling place.
- The identification of a voter may be accomplished by a variety of means. The voter may identify himself/herself orally, in writing, or by producing identifying documents, e.g. a driver's license, state identification, employee's identification card, or other form of identification with the voter's name and address. A poll worker may rely on his or her own knowledge to identify the voter or may rely on the statement of another registered voter or election official.
- If the voter does not identify himself/herself orally, the poll worker shall ask the voter if he/she has any identification with his/her name and address.
- If the voter is unable to write his/her name and address in the signature poll book, or poll list, the voter may make his/her mark at the place intended for his/her name. If the voter is unable to make his/her mark, a precinct official shall make the mark. A precinct official shall then write the name of the voter at the proper place in the poll list or the signature poll book following the voter's mark. The making of such mark shall be attested by the precinct official who shall evidence the same by writing his name on the poll list or signature poll book as witness of such mark.
IV. PRIMARY ELECTIONS
- In a primary election a voter shall identify his/her party affiliation by any means of communication or response reasonably calculated to indicate his/her party affiliation. Precinct officials shall assist the voter in communicating his/her intent. Party affiliation may be shown by a variety of affirmative acts or responses such as naming a candidate, or producing a sample ballot or piece of paper with the party affiliation or candidate.
- If no affiliation with a party is made or if the party affiliation indicated is successfully challenged, pursuant to R.C. 3513.19, then the voter shall receive an issues-only ballot.
V. CHALLENGES AT POLLING PLACE
- A voter, otherwise qualified, shall not be challenged on the basis of his/her mental capacity.
- No person offering to vote shall be challenged on any grounds at the polling place unless the challenger has knowledge or facts to support the challenge and has reasonable grounds for such challenge.
- The person's whose right to vote is challenged may seek assistance from anyone of his/her choice in responding to the challenge. If the person of choice is not immediately available to assist the challenged voter, the challenged voter may return that same day with the person of his/her choice in order to have the opportunity to respond to the challenge.
- The person challenged may rebut the challenge by means of oral and/or documentary evidence.
- Every reasonable means possible shall be used to assist the elector in obtaining a ballot and casting his/her vote.
- All voters have the right to bring a sample ballot into the voting booth.
- Any voter who requires assistance to vote by reason of blindness, mental or physical disability, or inability to read or write may be given assistance by a person of. the voter's choice, other than the voter's employer or agent of that employer, officer or agent of the voter's union, or a candidate whose name appears on the ballot. Such assistance must be limited to those acts necessary to carry out the voter's independent intent. Nothing herein shall be read to except or limit the applicability of the prohibitions set forth in R.C. Chapter 3599 regarding election fraud or misconduct.
- The training of all poll workers shall include training on the rights of mentally disabled persons to vote. Emphasis shall be placed on providing assistance to the voter in identifying himself/herself and fulfilling all the requirements necessary prior to obtaining a ballot. Instructions regarding the right of mentally disabled persons to vote shall be incorporated into training materials distributed to each Board of Elections and all precinct judges. Each board shall be directed to give such materials to all precinct officials and poll workers in advance of every election.
- Election officials in counties in which there are a significant number of persons residing in group homes will be encouraged to provide, or cooperate in the provision of, training on election procedures to residents of such homes.
VIII. PERSONS RESIDING IN PUBLIC OR PRIVATE INSTITUTIONS
- The lawful residence of a qualified elector who is residing in a public or private institution for temporary treatment only, shall be the residence from which the elector entered such institution.
- Persons who reside in a public or private institution shall have as their lawful residence the county, city, village, and township in which the said institution is located.
- Residency or attendance at a public or private institution such as an institution for mentally retarded persons or mentally ill persons does not disqualify a person for voting purposes. The same qualifications as to age, residency, and citizenship apply to persons residing in or attending public and private institutions.
The terms of this order shall be implemented by Defendant Brown no later than April 30, 1984.