July 8 – Elections Saskatchewan today released a report on making elections and voting in the province more accessible.
Toward Improved Accessibility for Saskatchewan Voters is the third publication in the Chief Electoral Officer’s Assessment Series. The report is available here, and is also available in the alternative formats of a large print version and an audio version.
“Elections Saskatchewan made a number of improvements that offered greater accessibility during the 2011 Provincial General Election,” says Dr. Michael Boda, Saskatchewan’s Chief Electoral Officer and head of Saskatchewan’s election management body. “We came to the conclusion, however, that we must continue to do everything possible to make electoral events accessible to every voter in the province.
“In 2013, working with experts from the International Foundation for Electoral Systems and the Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy, Elections SK solicited input from disability and seniors organizations in launching the Electoral Accessibility Initiative.
“The report released today marks not the end of this initiative but outlines Elections SK’s implementation plan for the coming 28th General Election and its commitment to deliver greater accessibility during this and coming electoral cycles.
“Our goal is to build an electoral process that provides voters in Saskatchewan with a choice of services that are delivered in a modern, accessible, safe, secure, and transparent manner that protects the secrecy and integrity of the vote. This assessment outlines the actions taken to date and demonstrates our commitment to increasing accessibility, public awareness and knowledge of the electoral process."
The Accessibility Implementation Plan is summarized under four headings:
- Voting options available to voters with disabilities;
- Polling place accessibility;
- Products and services at polling stations, and
- Voter information and public education.
“We continue to make progress in the accessibility of our elections,” says Dr. Boda. “We are committed to continue listening and responding to the disability and seniors community, and to have our performance in the next general election evaluated. From this audit, we will make further recommendations for legislative change if needed for the 29th General Election, and to bring Saskatchewan’s electoral process in line with Canadian and international best practice.”
The 28th General Election is set, by law, for November 2, 2015. If there is a conflict with a federal election at that time, the alternative date for Saskatchewan’s election is April 4, 2016.
Elections Saskatchewan is the province’s independent, impartial, professional election management body. Given a mandate from the Saskatchewan Legislative Assembly, it organizes, manages and oversees provincial electoral events.
For more information contact:
Communications & Outreach