The Commission provides a range of services and utilises a variety of specialised equipment to assist electors who have particular needs to vote.
Technology Assisted Voting
The Electoral Act allows eligible electors to vote by means of an electronic device such as a telephone or computer. An eligible elector includes anyone who is unable to vote without assistance because of insufficient literacy skills, is sight impaired or is living with an incapacity.
At the 2021 State general election the following two technology assisted voting options will be available from Wednesday 24 February 2021:
1. Telephone Assisted Voting
Telephone Assisted Voting (TAV) allows eligible electors to vote over the telephone by applying and having their enrolment checked via a call centre and then voting via a completely separate vote cast call centre. Commission staff at the vote cast call centre verbally read the voting instructions and ballot paper information to the elector who then instructs the operator how they want their ballot papers marked, whilst ensuring elector anonymity. TAV operating hours will be posted on this website once confirmed.
2. Vote Assist
Vote Assist allows electors who visit a limited number of selected venues to listen to pre-recorded voting instructions and ballot paper information, select their preferences using a special keypad and then have their completed ballot papers self-printed prior to ballot box lodgement. Vote Assist will be available throughout the early voting period and on polling day at locations in the Perth CBD and at VisAbility in Victoria Park.
Other Voting Options
Any elector may apply for a postal vote once the election period commences. The easiest way is to apply online here however you can also request to have a postal vote application form sent to you in the mail. Some elderly or incapacitated electors opt to become a General Early Voter, in which case postal votes are automatically sent to them at State election.
Depending on the status of the COVID-19 pandemic at the time of the election, mobile polling teams may be able to visit hospitals, special institutions and aged care facilities in order to provide an in person voting service to permanent residents. Locations to be visited are listed elsewhere on this website.
Early Voting Centres
If attending a polling place on polling day is not convenient, from Wednesday 24 February 2021 electors may visit one of the many early voting centres across the State. Locations can be found on this website once confirmed.
For electors with mobility issues it is possible for a Polling Place Manager to take ballot papers to a vehicle parked at the polling place for an elector to cast their vote from their vehicle.
Polling places with the best wheelchair access are marked with a wheelchair symbol at polling places lists included on this website, plus in the Saturday 13 March 2021 edition of The West Australian newspaper. An Accessibility Parking Bay is established in the best possible location relative to the polling place entrance.
All polling places have a desk top voting screen available where an elector can cast their vote while seated, whether in a wheelchair or standard chair. All polling places are also provided with magnifying sheets, better hearing cards and triangular pencils.
It is the right of every elector to cast their vote in an environment which provides for a secret and independent ballot. However, you may seek assistance at any time. If you do not understand the process, are unable to or have difficulty writing on your ballot paper or need any other support, you may ask a polling official, carer, friend or relative to assist you.
Accessibility Voting Centres
In addition to the voting options outlined above, a small number of polling places and early voting centres will also have several other assistive devices available for use by electors who may require them. These venues are called Accessibility Voting Venues.
In addition to the assistive devices available at all polling centres, Accessibility Voting Venues also have:
• Audio Loops
Hearing and listening aids can be ineffective in environments with a lot of talking or background noise, such as a polling place. Audio loops are used to overcome this issue by enhancing the sound of a person’s voice, such as a polling official. Electors with a hearing or listening aid can switch to ‘T’ to use the system.
• Reader Pens
Electors who experience literacy difficulties or for whom reading the English language is a challenge, can use a reader pen to assist them to read and mark their ballot papers. The reader pen will verbalise any text that the pen is moved over.
Information for Carers
The Commission is committed to ensuring that carers are provided with every opportunity to vote at election time and also that they are provided with information to ensure those that they are caring for can participate in the electoral process if they are able to do so. A brochure explaining enrolment and voting options is available for persons requiring care.