Accessible voting

How we make our polling stations accessible and how to vote if you can't go to a polling station.

At the polling station

Wheelchair access

As many polling stations as possible have wheelchair access. The ramped access may not be through the main door, but it will be clearly signposted.

If it's difficult for you to access the polling station, the Presiding Officer can help you. They can bring a ballot paper out to you. Once you've voted, fold the ballot paper and the Presiding Officer will take it to the ballot box.

Every polling station has a low-level polling booth. The height to the desk is approximately 76cm. It's suitable for most wheelchair users and people of short stature.

Voting aids for visually impaired or blind people

Large print notices

We display large print notices of ballot papers in every polling station. You can use these as a reference. By law you must still cast your vote on a standard print ballot paper.

Tactile device

We can fix a tactile device to the ballot paper. It has flaps that cover each option on the ballot paper and has the corresponding ballot number underneath. These numbers are embossed in black and you can also idenify it by touch. 

To cast your vote, lift the relevant flap to show the box on the ballot paper and make your mark. We then remove the device and place the ballot paper in the ballot box.

Help from a companion

If you have a disability that prevents you from completing a ballot paper on your own, you can bring someone with you to the polling station. Your companion must be 18 years or older on election day.

At the polling station they must ask the Presiding Officer for a companion declaration form. This is to state they have recorded your vote truly and faithfully.

Help from staff

You can ask the Presiding Officer to help you vote. They are legally bound by the Requirement for Secrecy and your vote will remain secret.

If you know which candidate you want to vote for, the Presiding Officer can mark the ballot paper for you. You do this in the privacy of the polling booth.

Other ways of voting

If you don't want to go to the polling station to vote, you can vote by post or proxy. Voters with a disability can have a permanent proxy vote.

Find out how to vote by post.

Find out more about voting by proxy.

Ask for a reasonable adjustment

To ask for a reasonable adjustment at your polling station you can:

The Returning Officer will then consider your request and get back to you.

Other useful links

United Response

United Response have specific information on the voting process.

Find out about the voting process on the United Response website.

Speaking Up

Speaking Up support and encourage people with learning disabilities to:

  • understand the voting process
  • become active citizens
  • register to vote

Find out how Speaking Up helps people with learning disabilities.