Make bal­lots ac­ces­si­ble: CNIB

Metro Canada (Toronto) - - Toronto - Brian fitz­patrick

For the vis­ually im­paired, a mu­nic­i­pal elec­tion can be an or­deal.

“De­pend­ing on the bal­lot, one per­son’s con­di­tion might make it easy to ac­cess, but for an­other per­son it might not be,” said Kat Clarke, leader in ad­vo­cacy with the Cana­dian Na­tional In­sti­tute for the Blind (CNIB) On­tario. “There are many bar­ri­ers they face.”

The city is look­ing to im­prove the ex­pe­ri­ence ahead of next year’s vote and has sched­uled a Wed­nes­day in­for­ma­tion ses­sion on bal­lots. CNIB is urg­ing peo­ple with sight is­sues to make their voices heard.

Ca­role Boughan­nam of Elec­tion Ser­vices said the city lis­tens to Ac­ces­si­bil­ity Out­reach Net­work — started in 2010 as part of the Elec­tion Ac­ces­si­bil­ity Plan.

“Maybe it’s time to look at it, re­fresh it, see what we can do

If you go

For de­tails on the wed­nes­day bal­lot ses­sion, email ac­ces­si­ble­elec­

bet­ter,” she said.

The city’s elec­tion plan in­cludes a “How to Vote” book­let in 25 lan­guages in both print and braille. The city also pro­vides touch screen and au­dio-en­abled Voter As­sist Ter­mi­nals.

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