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Minnesota's New ASL Hotline for Voters

Four deaf Minnesotans working at hotline

10/23/2020 12:03:01 PM

Pictured are Jessalyn Akerman-Frank (top left), Jaemi Hagen (top right), Emory Kevin Dively (bottom left), and Sarah Arana (bottom right).

Thanks to a partnership with the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State and community advocates for accessible voting, the Minnesota Commission of the Deaf, DeafBlind & Hard of Hearing is pleased to announce that Minnesota is providing a hotline for voters who are deaf, deafblind, or hard of hearing and who use American Sign Language (ASL) as a primary language.

Voters can call to get information in ASL on how to vote, where to vote, how to track their absentee ballot, and other information related to the 2020 election. 

“The Commission is thrilled that Minnesota continues to be a leader in championing communication access for voters who are deaf, deafblind, and hard of hearing. With the new video factsheets in American Sign Language and with establishing an ASL hotline to answer voter questions, our standards continue to rise. We appreciate working together with the Secretary of State’s Office, community advocates, and our stakeholders for barrier-free voting.” - Darlene G. Zangara, Ph.D.


Four of MNCDHH's voting experts will be staffing the hotline. They are:

  • Emory Kevin Dively,
  • Jaemi Hagen,
  • Jessalyn Akerman-Frank, and
  • Sarah Arana.  


The service starts today! Friday, October 23, 2020. The hours are 8:00 A.M. - 4:30 P.M. for most days. On Election Day, the hours are 7:00 A.M. to 8:00 P.M. 


The direct videophone voter hotline number is 612-293-4288.

This hotline is also open to voters who identify as hard of hearing or as an individual with a hearing loss or similar and wish to call through their voice, amplified, or captioned phone to connect with one of our experts.

News coverage

Check out KIMT3 News' video interview with our own Jessalyn Akerman-Frank, "There's now an American Sign Language voter hotline to help people cast their ballot."

Additional videos available in ASL with voiceover, captions, and transcripts

A new series of video ‘factsheets’ are available in American Sign Language (ASL), produced in collaboration with the Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State. These short videos, which mirror information that the Secretary of State’s Office provides in print, give voters who communicate in ASL crucial information about how to cast their vote, in-person or absentee.

The videos cover four aspects of voting in Minnesota: voters’ rights, assistance to voters, voting early by absentee ballot, and election day registration.

The videos are signed by the talented Regina Daniels. 


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