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Information for voters with a disability

Register to vote

You must be on the electoral register (also known as the electoral roll) to be able to vote at an election.

To be on the register, you must register to vote either online or by completing a paper form. The online application takes 5 minutes to complete. You will need your national insurance number. If you need a paper form please complete our online contact form or phone 01872 324196.

When an election is due, the deadline to apply to register is 12 working days before polling day.

Register to vote online

How to request a reasonable adjustment

You can request a reasonable adjustment to vote in an election. Please let us know as soon as possible if you need additional support, such as an audio device.

You can call Cornwall Council’s elections team on 01872 324 196 or email

Voting in a polling station

At polling stations, we provide support for voters with disabilities, including:

  • Accessible venues
  • Low-level polling booths for wheelchair users
  • Large print versions of ballot papers
  • Tactile Voting Devices (TVD) for blind and partially sighted voters
  • Pencil grips
  • Handheld magnifiers
  • Additional chairs for rest (where space allows)
  • Additional lighting (where required)
  • Assistance from polling station staff to be guided to the voting booth and
    how the equipment is used

Vote by proxy

If you are registered to vote but will be unable to get to a polling station to vote, you can appoint someone you trust to go to your polling station to vote on your behalf. This is called voting by proxy.

Unlike postal voting, you do need to give a reason for your proxy vote. Explaining you find it difficult to get to the polling station because of your sight loss or another disability should suffice.

You’ll need to register to vote by proxy at least six working days before the election by completing an application form.  There are different application forms depending on your reason for requesting a proxy vote.  You will need to send the correct application form back to your local electoral registration office. Unless you are registered as blind you will need someone to support your application (such as a GP or social worker).

You can call the elections team on 0300 1231 115 to get one of these forms.

Postal voting

You can apply to vote by post rather than going to a polling station. If you have registered to vote by post you will be sent your ballot paper. You can cast your vote in your own home using your own magnifiers or equipment, rather than going to your polling station. You can also request assistance at home, including a:

  • tactile voting device
  • large print ballot paper for reference
  • help with returning your completed ballot paper

A new law, the Elections Act 2022 sets out extra support which we must provide, if you have a disability or accessibility need. This includes bringing another person to the polling station for support. If you would like extra help with voting or registering to vote, you can contact our Electoral Services team using the contact details at the bottom of this page.

Mencap easy read guide on voting

The Mencap guide provides support for people with a learning disability, families or carers, to help you vote or register to vote. The easy read guide pre-dates the photo ID requirement at polling stations, so it does not include this new part of the process. Staff at the polling station will tell you when they need to see your photo ID.  All you have to do is make sure you bring an accepted form of photo ID with you when you come to vote.

Find out about accepted forms of photo ID

Voters in England now need to show photo ID to vote at polling stations in some elections. This will apply to UK elections, including:

  • general elections
  • recall petitions
  • local elections
  • by-elections
  • Police and Crime Commissioner elections

Read the full Mencap easy read voting guide

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