Disability Access and Inclusion Plan

 

Message from the Electoral Commissioner 

The Electoral Commission of South Australia (ECSA) is committed in making the 2018 State Election as inclusive and accessible as possible to all South Australians, including those living with a disability. 

Our Disability Access and Inclusion Plan sets out the objectives, outcomes and services that will guide ECSA’s approach to the Election. 

The Plan has been developed through consultation with a range of disability sector organisations, and focuses on delivering practical outcomes that will improve the accessibility of our voting and information services. 

The Plan has three main objectives: 

  • Deliver tailored and accessible information for electors with a disability. 
  • Deliver tailored and accessible voting services for electors with a disability. 
  • Improve the awareness of Electoral Commission SA staff regarding the needs of electors with a disability. 

Following 17 March 2018, ECSA will evaluate the success of the Plan in conjunction with representatives of South Australia’s disability sector as part of continuing commitment to improving the participation of people with disability in the democratic processes. 

Disability Access and Inclusion Plan 2018 (PDF 820 kB)

Mick Sherry

Electoral Commissioner


 

OBJECTIVE 1

Deliver tailored and accessible information for electors with a disability.

Outcomes Services

Strategies to engage and support people with a disability are designed, delivered and evaluated on the basis of consultation and collaboration with sector stakeholders.

  • Sector stakeholders are consulted prior to the election to identify challenges and opportunities for engaging and supporting people with a disability.
  • Collaboration with sector stakeholders prior to and during the election period to raise electoral awareness and disseminate information.
  • Sector stakeholders are consulted after the election to evaluate the success of information and voting services.

Accessible publications and promotional material are available.

  • All election material is written in plain English in line with South Australian Government guidelines.
  • Easy read publications are available for people with an intellectual disability or low literacy.
  • A dedicated page is available on the website containing information for people with a disability.
  • Publications are co-designed with sector partners.
  • The EasyVote Guide that is mailed to every elector includes information about the nearest wheelchair-accessible polling places.
  • A smartphone app displays nearby wheelchair accessible polling places and associated wait times.
  • Large print, braille and audio letters are distributed in partnership with sector stakeholders.
  • Television commercials and online video content feature closed captioning.
  • An instructional Auslan video is available on the website containing information about enrolment, voting options and how to complete the ballot papers.
Provide information on the website in appropriate formats and ensure website content complies with accessibility standards.
  • The website aims for WCAG 2.0 compliance.
  • Readspeaker text-to-speech software is available.

OBJECTIVE 2

Deliver tailored and accessible voting services for electors with a disability.

 

Outcomes Services
Polling places are accessible for people with a disability.
  • All polling places are audited for accessibility and, wherever possible, polling booths will be fully wheelchair accessible.
  • The visibility of signage in every polling place is assessed to ensure it is unobstructed and easily visible from wheelchair height.
  • Electors can be assisted to complete their ballot papers by a person of their choice, and may also be assisted to complete any declaration (a candidate, or a scrutineer appointed by a candidate, must not act as an assistant).
  • At least one desktop voting screen is available in every polling place to support electors using a wheelchair to cast a secret ballot.
  • Voting booths are edged with black strips to provide improved contrast for electors with vision impairment.
  • Queue priority is offered to electors with a disability, the aged, the infirm, and electors with mobility issues.
  • Ballot papers are offered to electors outside of the polling place if they are unable to leave their vehicle.
Alternative voting options are available for people with a disability.
  • Electronic voting (Vote Assist) is trialled for sight-impaired electors at three accessible metropolitan locations.
  • Electors with a disability can apply for a one-off postal vote for the 2018 State Election.
  • Electoral Visitor teams will attend more than 250 aged care facilities and hospitals to provide on-the-spot voting facilities for residents and patients who are unable to attend a booth on polling day.
  • Electors with a disability can apply for inclusion on the Register of Declaration Voters and have their voting material issued by post on an ongoing basis for every state election.
  • If the elector is unable to complete and sign a postal vote application and postal ballot themselves, the elector can apply to have the materials filled in and signed by a person of their choice if the associated requirements are met. 

OBJECTIVE 3

Improve the awareness of Electoral Commission SA staff regarding the needs of electors with a disability.

 

Outcomes Services
All Electoral Commission SA staff receive disability awareness information.
  • Disability awareness material is included as part of the induction process for all Electoral Commission SA staff.
  • Sector stakeholders are invited to deliver disability awareness information sessions for all Electoral Commission SA staff.
Polling officials receive training and instruction on assisting electors with a disability.
  • Training manuals for polling officials include information on disability awareness and how to assist electors with a disability participate in the electoral process.

 


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