Voter Information for Deaf Communities

Updated: February 2018
Voter Information for Deaf Communities

In 2018, Sri Lanka Central Federation for the Deaf and the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) produced a series of videos with instructions for voting and other information with support from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The videos include Sri Lankan Sign Language, Sinhala, Tamil, and English.


Voting Process: I am going to explain to you about the voting process. These are the steps to be followed within a polling station. Polling starts at 7am and closes at 4pm. So please go to the polling station as early as soon. Take any one of your valid identity cards and the polling card. Hand over your identity card and the polling card to the polling center officials. A polling center official will color the small finger of your left hand with indelible ink. A ballot paper will be handed over to you after that. Take the ballot papers to the polling cubicles. Mark your ballot with only a cross, fold the ballot paper and put it into the ballot box.


Voter Registration: If your vote secured in the upcoming local government election? Fill the voter's list given to your hosehold by the Grama Niladhari of your area. The Grama Niladhari will take steps to register you as a voter. You can check via your mobile phones, computers or tabs. If there is any problem with your registration, you have to meet your Grama Niladhari. The website is There are a number of valid identity cards for voting: National Identity Card, valid driver's license, valid passport, Elder's Identity Card, Pensioner's Identity Card, and the Clergy Identity Card are all valid. If you don't have any of these, please go and meet your Grama Niladhari with two identical photos. He/she will issue you a temporary ID with which you can exercise your vote. If you are a registered voter, it is not mandatory to carry your polling card to vote.


Valuable Vote: Do you know that you should be the only person deciding your vote? Your vote should not be subject to any threat or coercion. Your vote is of immeasurable value. Exchange of money or bribery for voting is a punishable offense. You cannot transfer your vote to anyone. A valid identity card recognized by the Commission is required to exercise your vote. The polling station is different this time. You have to mark only one cross. Any other mark or sign in the ballot paper will make your vote invalid. Mark the cross only inside the relevant box. Insert the ballot paper into the ballot box without showing it to anyone. Do not mark any different mark in the ballot paper. If you are a person with disablity, however, you need to obtain prior approval in the prescribed form from the Election Commission. 


Everyone's Right: Voting is everyone's right. Disability should not prevent you from exercising your vote. There should be access to persons using wheelchairs at all possible instances. A blind person can be assisted to exercise his/her vote by a trusted person with prior approval of the Election Commission. If an assistant is not available, assistance can be obtained from the Senior Presiding Officer. Persons with mobility disabilities can obtain approval from the Election Commission to use transport facilities. Persons with motor disabilities can obtain the assistance of polling center officials to exercise their vote. 


Local Elections: Why is it important to exercise your vote in the local government elections? Not electing a suitable leader will affect the development of the area you live in. If you elect a suitable leader the following things in your area will be managed in a proper manner: library services, environmental friendly industries, new constsruction, repairing and maintaining of roads, water and electricity, sanitary services, maternity services, drainage, maintenance of hospitals, garbage management and shops and market regulation, cleaning of roadways, control of mosquitos, children's playgrounds and recreational areas, demolishing of old buildings. Your area will become a better place to live in if you elect a suitable person to your local authority.