Postal Ballot Usability

I saw yesterday a BBC local news spot on how complex the postal ballots were in parts of the North West region where there were council elections in addition to the European Parliament elections. A presenter bravely went through the steps of detaching the identification form, signing it and getting a witness to do so, voting (using two different methods), folding and inserting into envelope A only the (huge) ballots – ensuring that a barcode sticker was showing through a window. Then Envelope A had to be placed in envelope B with the declaration of identity in such a way that an address label showed through a window. “Phew” exclaimed the reporter and the presenter back in the studio. I sighed too. That's just WAY too difficult.

Thankfully, according to the one my partner received in Lancaster, the European-only postal ballots in the North West region are much simpler without detachable bits and barcodes to show in windows. The declaration of identity was also simpler, but still required a witness, unlike the postal ballots piloted in Brighton.