Voter ID Laws May Disproportionately Affect Transgender Community

by David Greene
October 29, 2018



Requiring a photo ID to cast a ballot is controversial. Those who support it say it’s a way to ensure the legitimacy of elections. Critics say it is a form of voter suppression. From member station WABE, Emma Hurt reports on how the practice might disproportionately affect one minority group, the transgender community.

EMMA HURT, BYLINE: The issue with voting ID requirements for transgender people is actually a side effect of a larger problem – barriers to getting names and gender markers on IDs to match them. Raffi Freedman-Gurspan is with the National Center for Transgender Equality.

RAFFI FREEDMAN-GURSPAN: That has an impact – right? – when you’re going to the polls and you have a identification card that might not match what you are appearing as, right? And there might be some confusion by the poll worker who’s just trying to do their job, of course.

HURT: And Georgia, the most populous state with strict voter ID laws, has the most transgender people at risk of this confusion – about 20,000. That’s according to a report from the Williams Institute at UCLA. Jody Herman is one of its authors.

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