Running an Accessible Campaign

Reach a Larger, More Diverse Audience

Making your campaign accessible makes it easier for all voters to get the information they need, engage in the election, and exercise their right to vote without encountering barriers. It also means that your messages and information can reach a larger, more diverse audience.

Here are some tips and resources for running an accessible campaign.

Types of disabilities

Disabilities take on many forms and may, or may not be immediately apparent to others. They can include, but are not limited to:

• physical disabilities
• deaf or a hearing impairment
• deaf-blind
• blindness or vision loss
• Cognitive disabilities
• Speech disabilities 
• Mental illness

Consider ways to minimize the barriers to participation that your campaign may be presenting for people with these and other disabilities. 

Some barriers that people with disabilities may experience in an election

Accessibility is an ongoing consideration throughout each stage of the electoral and campaign process. These are examples of barriers:

  • Attitudinal barriers such as stigmas and false assumptions about people with disabilities.
  • Information/communication barriers such as information offered in a form that is accessible to some, but not all.
  • Technology barriers when technology, or the way it used, cannot be accessed by people with disabilities.
  • Physical/architectural barriers including obstacles that make it difficult for some to access a place.
  • Organizational barriers such as policies, practices or procedures that result in unequal access or exclusion for some.

Accessibility considerations for campaign event locations

When selecting campaign event locations, consider the following to ensure all can participate.

  • Make arrangements with group homes, assisted-living homes, retirement homes, nursing homes and hospitals to visit and engage with resident electors.
  • Look for locations with:

- accessible parking
- barrier-free sidewalks and paths of travel
- easy access by different transportation methods
- meeting rooms on one level close to the entryway
- door frames and hallways wide enough so a wheelchair can pass through 
- accessible washroom facilities
- elevators and ramps with handrails if there are different levels 
- automatic door openers
- accessible furniture or seating areas
- portable microphones if there are multiple speakers

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