New way to vote in South Australian state election

06 March 2018

Voters who are blind or have low vision will for the first time be able to vote unassisted at next month's South Australian state election.
The Electoral Commission of South Australia is offering VoteAssist, a service enabling South Australians who are blind or have low vision to vote independently, for the first time through the use of special computer software.
Vision Australia General Manager of Government Relations and Advocacy Karen Knight said electors will be able to cast their all-important vote at a computer terminal with headphones, a numerical keypad and audio prompts. 
"The voter will be guided through the process and, importantly, will no longer need to share their voting decision with anyone," she said.
"While Vision Australia is pleased to see South Australians who are blind or have low vision being offered VoteAssist, our recommendation for the best practice in remote electronic voting systems is a system called iVote.
"Unlike VoteAssist, internet systems such as iVote are completely secret, independent, verifiable and can be accessed widely in both the pre-election period and on election days. We will continue to work tirelessly to urge all states and territories to introduce iVote to make the democratic process truly equal for those who are blind or have low vision."
iVote has proven to be successful in state elections in New South Wales and Western Australia.
Once the elector has given their preference via VoteAssist, the ballot papers are printed and placed into a Declaration Envelope. No votes are recorded or stored electronically on the system after the voting has occurred.
It is recommended to book ahead to vote using VoteAssist. Bookings can be made by phoning 1300 944 306. The service will be available at three locations from Monday 5 March for nine business days. 
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