Barack Obama declared that “there is no such thing as a vote that does not matter”. Yet many people are still effectively excluded from exercising their vote.

There are approximately 1.5 million people with a learning disability in the UK. But, a United Response survey in 2021 found that only two thirds of people knew that people with learning disabilities have a legal right to vote.

The same year a Dimensions survey found that 80% of people felt that polling stations weren’t accessible for people with a learning disability and 61% of people reported that polling station staff did not always make legally entitled reasonable adjustments. And, RNIB have serious concerns that the Elections Bill will fail to protect blind and partially sighted people’s right to vote independently and in secret.

Article 29 of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) explains how disabled people will have their political rights guaranteed so they can enjoy them on an equal basis with others. This includes ensuring that voting procedures, facilities and materials are appropriate, accessible and easy to understand, and use.

As organisations and individuals we are committed to ensuring Article 29 of the UNCRPD is upheld.

To make sure disabled and autistic voters have their political rights guaranteed, and voting is an accessible process, for Accessible Voting Day on 3 March 2022 we are pledging to:

  • Be allies and champion the right to vote for all disabled and autistic people
  • Help promote the availability of manifestos and voting guides in accessible formats including easy read, braille and audio
  • Listen to disabled and autistic people about their voting accessibility concerns and take action


Tim Cooper, CEO of United Response

Steve Scown, Chief Executive of Dimensions

Matt Stringer, CEO of RNIB

Richard Kramer, CEO of Sense and Sense International

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester

Alex Norris MP, Shadow Minister for Levelling Up, Housing, Communities and Local Government

Mark Lee, Chief Executive of Together Trust

Dr Rhidian Hughes, Chief Executive of VODG

Ruth Gorman, Chief Executive Officer of Imagine Act and Succeed

Karyn Kirkpatrick, CEO of KeyRing Living Support Networks 

Kirsty Matthews, CEO of HFT

John Crawford, Chief Executive of Three Cs

Aisling Duffy, Chief Executive of Certitude

Edel Harris OBE, CEO of Mencap

Sarah Maguire, Chief Executive of Choice Support

Lisa Hopkins, Chief Executive of SeeAbility

Kamran Mallick, CEO of Disability Rights UK

Ruth Owen OBE, CEO of Leonard Cheshire

Scott Watkin MEB, Jordan Smith, Wendy Burt
Co-Chairs of Learning Disability England (LDE) Members’ Representative Body

Carmel Miedziolka, Chief Executive Officer of Area 51 Education

Sarah Burslem, CEO of MacIntyre

Claire Hilton, Managing Director of Unity Works

Lesley Dixon, Chief Executive of PSS

David Ellis, Chief Executive of National Star

Sue Livett, Managing Director of Aldingbourne Trust

Sarah Norman, Chief Executive of Barnsley Council

Sue Porto, Chief Executive of Brandon Trust