There is a lot of support available to support electors in the polling station. You can completed a polling station support request in advance of polling day. These can be downloaded and printed from the Downloads section. The list of additional support and equipment available is also listed below:
- Someone to read out the candidates on the ballot paper
- To be shown a large print ballot paper
- To be able to lip read instructions
- Someone to help mark the ballot paper (either a companion or the presiding officer)
- A tactile voting device (more information below)
- Extra light in the polling booth
- A pencil grip
- A magnifier glass
Assistance from staff
Polling staff (Presiding Officer and Poll Clerks) will receive additional training to ensure that they are knowledgeable and informed on how best to support you on the day.
If requested, Polling staff can also assist you with marking your ballot paper.
Assistance from a companion
If you would prefer to bring a companion with you to assist in voting as opposed to receiving assistance from a member of staff at the polling station, this is possible.
Your companion must be either a close relative (aged 18 years or over) or a qualified elector. You should ask the permission of the Presiding Officer to be assisted by their companion.
The companion, not the voter, is required by law to complete a simple declaration, ‘Declaration to be made by the companion of a voter with disabilities’. The companion should fill out the declaration and sign the document. The Presiding Officer will provide you with this in the polling station, but you can view a copy of what the form looks like in the downloads section at the top of this page.
You can find out more about the voter ID arrangements, please visit Voter ID.
The process of checking ID may take longer and lead to queues at busier times.
Busy times in polling stations often include 7am to 9.30am, lunchtime, 3.30pm to 4.30pm and 6pm to 8pm. Trying to avoid these peak times may mean voters have to wait for a shorter period of time.
Additional available to support people with a visual impairment:
Key information on the signs will also be displayed on a yellow background with black text.
Large print ballot paper
You can ask the polling staff for a large print version of the ballot paper to use as a guide to assist you with making your mark on the ballot paper
Tactile voting device
If you have difficulty completing the standard print ballot paper, you can use a tactile voting device to help mark your vote in the correct place.
The tactile voting device has a sticky backing, which attaches on top of your ballot paper. It has numbered lift up flaps (the numbers are raised and in braille) directly over the boxes where you mark your vote.
You can use the large print ballot form in the polling station as a guide to follow, or ask someone (a companion or polling station staff) to read out the list of candidates to you. The candidates are in alphabetical order. You will need to remember the number of the candidate you wish to vote for, then lift the flap with the same number and mark your cross (X) in the box.
You can then detach the tactile device and fold your ballot paper in half before posting it in the ballot box.
Seeing AI or video magnifying glasses can also be used in polling stations as a reasonable adjustment in the equality act. Please inform the Presiding Officer in the polling station if you will be using these before you go to the polling booth.