Here’s a little tip for folks voting in Guelph in the municipal election. Remember when I was raving about those thumb switch audio voting machines? Well, apparently, the machines are even cooler than I thought. I guess they have features on them to help people who can’t move their hands. I don’t understand it all, but they have a mechanism like some people might use to control their wheelchairs, so they can cast their ballot by puffing into a little doo dad connected to the machine.
The important point is if you have any sort of trouble marking your x, and you think using one of these machines would be a good idea, use them. They’re not just for blind folks or just for folks in wheelchairs or just for any other group. If you have trouble reading the ballot and think you would process the info better if you heard it, ask for audio! If you have trouble with your hands and need another way to mark your x, ask for the machine! It’s there, please use it.
And the cool thing about Guelph is they have them available at the advance polls *and* on election day. Everyone else only seems to have them available at the advance polls. But we’re just that much cooler and have them at both times. Please, anyone who thinks they might make use of the machines, use them. The city needs to see that they are needed and used so we will keep having them on election day and at the advance polls. I never, ever, ever want to go back to voting the old way.
Here’s a quick summary of the alternative voting methods available, courtesy of Guelph Votes’s FAQ.
Will there be alternative voting methods available?
Yes, the same accessible voting technology will be available at all advance and regular polls. Voters can also request the use of a thumbswitch audio voting method, which allows people to vote by pressing a button to make their selections.
In addition, each poll has magnifying sheets which may be used to visually enlarge the print on ballots.
People who prefer to vote with the assistance of another person, may do so once the person assisting them takes an oath of secrecy.
There ya have it. Everybody, vote. You have no reason not to.