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‘Call for Evidence’ launched to help make voting more accessible

The UK Government is gathering public opinion to find out how accessible the country’s electoral system is for persons with disabilities.

The Call for Evidence was launched online by the Cabinet Office to collect information about direct experiences of voters with disabilities in elections.

The document claims that responses will “help identify if current mechanisms to support disabled people to participate in the democratic process are sufficient,” as well as identifying good practice from the Electoral Services Team in elections.

Questions in the Call for Evidence ask respondents detailed questions about their experience in registering to vote and casting a vote, including what can be done to make these processes easier for persons with disabilities.

Other sections focus on support provided to persons with disabilities at elections, and whether any support received has been sufficient. The document also provides a summary of the support that must be offered by law to persons with disabilities at elections.

Responses to the Call for Evidence will help inform a report highlighting key findings and giving recommendations for making elections more accessible. The report will be published by the government and the Accessibility of Elections Group in spring 2018 after responses are reviewed by the Cabinet Office Accessibility Working Group, whose members include RNIB, the Royal Mencap Society, Scope, the NHS and the Electoral Commission.

The Call for Evidence is available online in HTML or in accessible Word document and PDF versions (produced with guidance from RNIB), and ‘easy read’ Word and PDF versions, produced with guidance from Mencap.

The deadline for responses, which can be sent via email or post, is November 14.

Find out more and respond to the Government’s Call for Evidence on access to elections at the Cabinet Office consultation page.


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