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Deputy Returning Officer & Poll Clerk Guidebook–Mobile Poll

Serving Electors

This section begins with procedures that apply to all electors, then describes situations with ID, followed by situations with registration and the list of electors.

Tips

  • Keep elector information covered when you are not using it
  • If for any reason a certificate or form is started but then not needed, write "CANCELLED" across the certificate and put in Office Documents Bag EC 50390
  • Shake the ballot box throughout the day to let the ballots settle
  • Call the office as soon as possible if you think you might run out of ballots

What do I do when an elector arrives

  1. DRO: Greet elector by saying, "Hello, bonjour."

    Ask them to say their name and address

    Note electors can show their ID instead

  2. DRO: Ask them for their VIC and to show ID with name and address. Make sure it is acceptable ID and that the name and address on the ID match the VIC

    Note if they don't have ID or another elector to vouch for their name and address, give them Have Your ID Ready to Vote EC 90189, ensure they are at the correct polling place and ask them to come back with acceptable ID

    Give the VIC or ID to the PC to check the List of Electors

  3. DRO: Fold and tear out the ballot, steps 1-4
  4. DRO: Once the PC confirms the elector is on the list, instruct them to:
    • go behind the voting screen
    • mark the circle next to the name of the candidate of their choice
    • not make any other markings on their ballot
    • return the ballot to you folded in the same way so that its serial number and your initials are visible
  5. DRO: Issue the ballot
  6. DRO: Check the returned ballot

    Note if necessary, ask them to fold it the same way before you accept it back

  1. Clerk: Once the DRO checks the elector's ID, use the ID or VIC to find their name on List of Electors. Make sure the name and address on the ID match the list

    Confirm to the DRO that the elector is on the list

    Put elector's VIC in VIC Collection Bag EC 50256, if they had one. Electors can keep it if they want

  2. Clerk: As the DRO issues the ballot, draw a line through their name on List of Electors

    Note do not draw a line if they were added to List of Entries

  3. Clerk: If they are on List of Electors, fill in Sequence Number Sheet EC 50111

    Note do not fill it in if they were added to List of Entries

  4. Clerk: Once elector puts their ballot in the box, tick the Voted box next to their name on List of Electors or List of Entries

    Every 60 minutes, put a copy of each Sequence Number Sheet EC 50111 in each folder for candidates. Put spare copies in folder marked "Spare Copies"

How do I issue a ballot?

  1. DRO: Fold it once toward the left to hide the circles
  2. DRO: Fold it a second time toward the left
  3. DRO: Remove a ballot from the booklet. Leave the counterfoil attached
  4. DRO: Make sure your initials and PD number are on the back
  5. DRO: Make sure the counterfoil is visible and give the ballot to the elector

How do I check a returned ballot?

  1. DRO: Without unfolding the ballot, check your initials and PD number on back of ballot
  2. DRO: Compare counterfoil number against stub. Make sure they are the same
  3. DRO: Take off counterfoil and tear it up
  4. DRO: Put counterfoil in plastic bag
  5. DRO: Give ballot to elector to put in the ballot box

An elector needs extra help

I think the elector might need help

  1. Both: Ask them if there is anything you can do to help
  2. Both: Listen carefully to what they say and be patient
  3. Both: Do your best to assist them

The elector has a disability

You are legally required to accommodate electors with disabilities and to serve them in a way that respects their dignity.

Face the elector and speak calmly. Even if they have a hearing impairment, your natural facial expressions, gestures and body movements will help them understand.

Electors are allowed to use their cellphone behind the voting screen as an assistive tool to help them vote.

Let the elector know that they can leave feedback on accessibility and their experience receiving services. They can use Incident Report Form EC 10051. You can help them complete the form.

Tools for electors who need extra help

Some electors may need extra tools to vote independently.

You have these tools at your table:

  • Magnifier — used to magnify and illuminate a document so the elector can see it better
  • Braille list of candidates — for electors who can read braille
  • EC 50140 Welcome to Your Polling Place Card — can be used to explain the voting process
  • EC 50170 Voting Template — used to hold the ballot in place and to help electors feel where to mark the ballot
  • EC 50174 List of Candidates in Large Print — printed in a larger format for electors with a visual impairment

The elector can use their smartphone to help them in the voting process. If an app is used to take a photo of the ballot, ask them to make sure the photo is deleted after they have voted.

Service animals

Service animals are allowed inside the polling place where local law permits.

If the elector considers the animal to be a service animal, treat it as a service animal at the polling place. You do not need to know if the animal is trained or if the person has a disability.

Service animals are working animals and should not be disturbed unless there is good reason to do so.

Some service animals, like dogs, might make noise or bark in order to assist the person. Do not disturb service animals when they make noise, unless the noise is excessive.

The elector wants help to mark their ballot (Helper Form)

An elector might need help to mark their ballot. They can get help from a relative, a person who is not a relative or the DRO.

A relative or non-relative must make a declaration before they can help the elector mark their ballot. They don't have to be a qualified elector. A non-relative can only help one elector.

The DRO does not need to make the declaration to help electors to mark their ballot.

If the DRO is the helper, the PC must act as a witness.

  1. DRO: If you are the helper, start at step 8
  2. DRO: Tell the helper that they must first make a declaration
  3. DRO: Show the elector and helper Privacy Notice EC 50152
  4. DRO: Complete Helper Form EC 50036 using declaration 5a in section 4

    If elector is unable to initial the form, mark an X and write your initials on their behalf

  5. DRO: Ask the helper to answer yes or no to the declaration

    Note if they refuse to make the declaration, see Someone refuses to make a declaration

  6. DRO: Put form in Office Documents Bag EC 50390
  7. Clerk: Next to elector's name on List of Electors or List of Entries, write
    • "5a" in Oath column
  8. DRO: The helper should ask the elector what help they want. They may help with any the following:

    Note if the DRO is the helper, the PC must witness the DRO helping the elector

    • bringing the elector behind the screen
    • quietly reading out the names of the candidates and ask them which candidate they want to vote for
    • marking the ballot for the elector
    • folding the ballot for them
  9. Both: Serve elector following regular process — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 2, PC step 1 of the next list

Elections Canada Helper Form
Text version of "Elections Canada Helper Form"

An elector needs extra help

The elector needs to vote from bed

Electors who are unable to leave their room may vote from their bed.

This process is often done after serving all electors who are able to vote at the facility, or based on the direction of the facility administrator.

  1. Both: When you arrive at the location, confirm with the administrator:
    • which electors require bedside voting
    • when is the best time to serve each elector, within the allotted time for that location
  2. Both: When ready to go bed-to-bed, temporarily close your polling station. Prepare and place a sign at your desk that says:
    • the polling station is temporarily closed
    • your approximate return time
  3. Both: Take the following items with you in a Transport Bag EC 50253:
    • Official List
    • Unused ballots
    • EC 50049 Correction Forms
    • EC 50050 Registration Certificates
    • EC 50051 Voting Status Certificates
    • EC 50055 Vouching Forms
    • EC 50060 Events Log
    • EC 50111 Sequence Number Sheet (use current copy, do not start a new one)
    • EC 50152 Privacy Notice
    • EC 50240 Voting Screen
    • EC 50250 Ballot Box
    • EC 50340 DRO and Poll Clerk Guidebook
    • EC 50390 Office Documents Bag
    • EC 50430 Envelope: Spoiled Ballots
    • any other supplies that you might need (e.g. assistive tools, voting pencils, etc.)
  4. Both: Visit each elector requiring bed-to-bed voting
  5. Both: Serve electors following regular process
  6. Both: When you are done, return to polling station and remain available until fixed departure time

The elector wants to be served in French

Electors have the right to be served in the official language of their choice. You are provided with tools to do so.

Note The card explains the voting process

You can point to the steps as you do them

  1. Both: Say "Un moment s’il vous plaît". If there is someone who is bilingual ask them to help
  2. Both: If there isn’t someone who is bilingual, give the elector Bienvenue à votre lieu de vote EC 50140
  3. Both: If the elector is having difficulty, call 1-800-463-6868 and ask for interpretation services

The elector wants help from an interpreter (Helper Form)

An elector might need someone to translate the instructions of an election officer. Translation can be between English and French, or to any other language, including sign language.

If the interpreter is an election officer, or has been appointed by the office, serve the elector following the regular process while interpreter translates instructions for elector

If the interpreter is not an election officer, they must make a declaration by following the steps below. They don't have to be a qualified elector. They can interpret for more than one elector, but they must make the declaration each time.

  1. DRO: Tell the interpreter that they will need to make a declaration on a form that they won't influence the elector
  2. DRO: Show the elector and interpreter Privacy Notice EC 50152
  3. DRO: Complete Helper Form EC 50036 using declaration 5b in section 4
  4. DRO: Ask the interpreter to answer yes or no

    Note if they refuse to make a declaration, see 'Someone refuses to make a declaration'

  5. DRO: Put the form in Office Documents Bag EC 50390
  6. Clerk: Next to elector's name on List of Electors or List of Entries, write
    • "5b" in Oath column
  7. Both: Serve elector following regular process while interpreter translates instructions for elector — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 2, PC step 1 of the next list

Elections Canada Helper Form
Text version of "Elections Canada Helper Form"

Situations with ID

Eligibility

To vote at a polling station, an elector must be

  • at least 18 years old on election day
  • a Canadian citizen
  • living at an address assigned to that polling station except if they have Transfer Certificate EC 50052

Acceptable ID

When they vote, an elector must show acceptable ID or be vouched for. Acceptable ID proves who they are and where they live. Many different combinations of documents are acceptable; without acceptable ID someone can vouch for who they are and where they live. The ID combination options are listed on Have Your ID Ready to Vote EC 90189. Documents not listed there are not acceptable.

The documents must be in English or French (or Inuktitut, in Nunavut). Photocopies are not acceptable.

E-statement and e-invoice printouts are accepted. They can also be shown on a mobile device.

Expired documents are acceptable if they show the elector's name and current address.

Documents on which the name or address have been added by hand are not acceptable, unless they have been added by the person or organization that issued the document.

Refer to Have Your ID Ready to Vote EC 90189 when you're not sure.

On the list

When they vote, an elector must be either:

  • already on List of Electors at the polling station, or
  • added to List of Entries at the polling station

The elector's face is covered

Inform the elector of their options listed below.

If elector chooses to show their face, serve elector following regular process

Electors who choose to keep their face covered must make a declaration at the polling station before they are given a ballot. They have two options (A or B).

Both: Option A

If the elector wants to use ID option 1 or 2, they will make the declaration on Qualification Form EC 50034. Follow steps under 'Someone doubts the elector's age or citizenship'

Both: Option B

If the elector wants to use ID option 3 (vouching), they will make the declaration on Vouching Form EC 50055. Follow steps under 'ID Option 3 (Vouching Form)'

ID Option 3 (Vouching Form)

Vouching is ID option 3. The voucher must know the elector, be eligible to vote in this polling place and must have ID.

If any of the steps were already done by the RegO, the elector will bring the pre-filled form(s) for the DRO to complete.

Make sure the elector is eligible to vote at your polling station:
  1. Clerk: Check if the elector has a VIC, or is on List of Electors or has a pre-filled Registration Certificate EC 50050. If yes, skip to step 3
  2. Clerk: Check that the elector's address is in your PD, if they don't have a VIC
Make sure the voucher is eligible to vouch for the elector:

Note A person can vouch for one other elector, except that employees of a long term care facility can vouch for all residents

  1. DRO: Ask the voucher whether the voucher knows the elector, and knows where the elector lives
  2. DRO: Check that the voucher's ID is acceptable under option 1 or option 2
  3. Clerk: If the elector did not have a pre-filled Vouching Form EC 50055, check that the voucher is on List of Electors for your polling place. If they have a form or are on the List, skip to step 8
  4. Clerk: Check that the voucher's address is in one of the PDs at your polling place and that they are registered at their polling station
  5. Clerk: If the voucher is eligible to vote but not on List at their polling station, they must register before they can vouch — p. 38-39
Complete the vouching process:
  1. DRO: Make elector and voucher aware of Privacy Notice EC 50152
  2. DRO: Complete Vouching Form EC 50055. When completed, the form is acceptable as ID under option 3

    Note if the elector or voucher refuses to make a declaration

  3. DRO: Put the form in Office Documents Bag EC 50390

Note If the elector is not already on List of Electors, register them using Registration Certificate EC 50050

Record the details of the vouching process:
  1. Clerk: Next to elector's name on List of Electors or List of Entries, write "6a, 6b" in Oath column and write voucher information in Attestor column. If the voucher registered at the poll, write "Reg." in their Seq. box
Then the elector can vote:
  1. Both: Serve elector following regular process — DRO p. 18, step 3, PC p. 19, step 2

Elections Canada Vouching Form
Text version of "Elections Canada Vouching Form"

ID is a letter confirming where the elector lives

Facilities which serve electors who might not have ID showing their current residential address can register as a recognized facility with the office. If there are any of these facilities that you need to know about, the office will tell you about them on List of Designated Establishments EC 50054. The facilities can then give an elector either:

  • a Letter of Confirmation of Residence EC 50053, or
  • a letter printed on the facility's letterhead that confirms the elector lives or receives services there

The elector can use the letter as one piece of ID showing their name and address under option 2. The letter must be used along with a second piece of ID.

  1. DRO: Check that the name of the facility on their letter is on List of Designated Establishments EC 50054

    Note call the office for help if the facility name on their letter is not on your list

  2. DRO: Ask the elector to show the Letter of Confirmation of Residence EC 50053, and a second piece of ID with their name
  3. Both: Serve them following the regular process — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 3, PC step 1 of the next list

ID shows a mailing address

Electors may use ID that has a mailing address (e.g. PO box) under ID option 1 or ID option 2 only if:

  • the elector is already on the List of Electors, and
  • the same mailing address appears on List of Electors

If they are not on the list already, they cannot register or vote unless they have other acceptable ID under option 1, 2 or 3.

If they are on the list already with the same mailing address, serve the elector following the regular process if there is no doubt about their address — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 3, PC, step 2 of the next list

In this case, an election officer, a candidate or a representative can reasonably doubt whether the elector actually lives in the polling division. If there is doubt, the elector must make a declaration.

  1. DRO: Make elector aware of Privacy Notice EC 50152
  2. DRO: Complete Qualification Form EC 50034 using declaration 2 in section 3

    Note if they refuse to make a declaration, see 'Someone refuses to make a declaration'

  3. DRO: Put form in Office Documents Bag EC 50390
  4. Clerk: Next to elector's name on List of Electors or List of Entries, write
    • "2" in Oath column
  5. Both: Serve elector following regular process — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 3, PC, step 2 of the next list

Elections Canada Qualification Form
Text version of "Elections Canada Qualification Form"

Someone doubts the elector's age or citizenship (Qualification Form)

The DRO, the PC, a candidate or a representative may have reasonable doubts about the elector's age or citizenship and request that the elector make a declaration. In that case, the elector must make the declaration to be allowed to vote.

  1. DRO: Make elector aware of Privacy Notice EC 50152
  2. DRO: Complete Qualification Form EC 50034 using declaration 1 in section 3

    Note if they refuse to make a declaration, see 'Someone refuses to make a declaration'

  3. DRO: Put form in Office Documents Bag EC 50390
  4. Clerk: Next to elector's name on List of Electors or List of Entries, write
    • "1" in Oath column
  5. Both: Serve elector following regular process — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 2, PC, step 2 of the next list

Note If the ID shows a mailing address, the elector's residence can also reasonably be doubted — 'ID shows a mailing address'

Elections Canada Qualification Form
Text version of "Elections Canada Qualification Form"

The elector refuses to show their ID to a candidate or representative

  1. DRO: Inform elector that the candidate or representative is entitled to see their ID
  2. DRO: If they still refuse, tell them that their refusal will be noted
  3. DRO: Complete a Log of notable events — Events Log (page 8-11)
  4. Both: Serve elector following regular process — 'What do I do when an elector arrives' - next list

Someone refuses to make a declaration

An elector, voucher or helper may refuse to make a declaration.

  1. DRO: Tell the person that they can appeal the request for them to make a declaration. You will need to call the office

    Note the office will make the final decision on whether they need to make a declaration or not

  2. DRO: If the office decides they need to make a declaration and they still don't want to take it, or they refuse to appeal to the office:
    • tell them that they cannot vote, vouch or help the elector
    • write the declaration number and "ref" in Oath column next to elector's name on List of Electors or List of Entries
  3. Both: Otherwise, continue serving the elector using the relevant procedure

Situations with the List

The elector is not on the List (Registration Certificate)

This elector is not registered. You must complete Registration Certificate EC 50050 and the elector must be added to List of Entries to vote.

Note if for any reason a certificate is started but then not needed, write "CANCELLED" across the certificate and put in Office Documents Bag EC 50390

  1. DRO: If elector has a pre-filled Registration Certificate EC 50050, ask them for acceptable ID and use it to verify that the certificate is properly pre-filled. Continue at step 3
  2. Clerk: If elector does not have a pre-filled Registration Certificate EC 50050

    Note if elector does not belong to your polling station, they cannot vote here

  3. DRO: Make them aware of Privacy Notice EC 50152
  4. DRO: Use the ID to complete Registration Certificate EC 50050. The Date of birth and gender are optional

    Note if the elector ticks the box in section 3, or Date of Birth or Gender field is missing they will have to register again at the next election

  5. Clerk: On List of Entries, write:
    • elector's name and street address
    • "Reg" in Type of Certificate column
  6. DRO: Put certificate in Office Documents Bag EC 50390
  7. Both: Serve elector following regular process — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 3, PC, step 2 of the next list

Elections Canada Registration Certificate
Text version of "Elections Canada Registration Certificate"

ID doesn't match the List

There are 4 different situations where acceptable ID may not match the list. Use this page to decide what the situation is, then follow the procedure.

Note if the ID has a mailing address (e.g. PO box), see 'ID shows a mailing address'

Both:
Situation 1

The elector's name or year of birth on the list is wrong

Both:
Situation 2

The elector's address on the list is incomplete, for example it is missing an apartment number

Both:
Situation 3

The address on the ID doesn't match the address on the list, but they both refer to the same place. For example, they both refer to the same road or town

Note use your local knowledge of the area. The office may also provide a list of alternative road names in the ED

Both:
Situation 4

The address on the ID doesn't match the address on the list and they refer to different places – for example different roads or different house numbers

The elector's personal information is wrong, or if their address on the list is incomplete (Correction Form)

  1. DRO: Read declaration 3 from section 1 of Correction Form EC 50049 to elector

    Note if they refuse to make a declaration, see 'Someone refuses to make a declaration'

  2. Clerk: Next to elector's name on List of Electors,
    • write "3" in Oath column
  3. DRO: Ask elector if they would like to correct their information on the list for a faster voting experience at the next election. If they don't, continue to step 5. If they do:
    • show them Privacy Notice EC 50152
    • complete rest of the form
  4. DRO: Put form in Office Documents Bag EC 50390
  5. Both: Serve elector following the regular process — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 3, PC, step 2 of the next list

Elections Canada Correction Form
Text version of "Elections Canada Correction Form"

The elector is crossed off the List (Voting Status Certificate)

When an elector is crossed off the list, it means they have already requested a ballot, but the elector may have been crossed off in error. They must complete the Voting Status Certificate EC 50051 and make a declaration to vote.

  1. DRO: Ask the elector if they have already been given a ballot during this election, or have requested a mail-in ballot. If they have, tell them that they cannot, by law, be given a second ballot

    Otherwise tell them that they can vote at your station only if they sign a declaration that they have not already requested a ballot

    Note if a candidate or representative objects to the elector receiving a ballot, record it in Log of notable events – Events Log (page 8-9) and continue serving elector

  2. DRO: Make elector aware of Privacy Notice EC 50152
  3. DRO: Complete Voting Status Certificate EC 50051

    Note if they refuse to make the declaration, see 'Someone refuses to make a declaration'

  4. Clerk: On List of Entries, write
    • elector's name and street address
    • "VSC" in Type of Certificate column
    • "4" in Oath column
  5. DRO: Put certificate in Office Documents Bag EC 50390
  6. Both: Serve elector following regular process — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 3, PC, step 2 of the next list

Elections Canada Voting Status Certificate
Text version of "Elections Canada Voting Status Certificate"

The elector has a Transfer Certificate

A Transfer Certificate allows an elector to vote at a different polling station than the one they were assigned. You must add them to List of Entries for them to vote at your polling station.

  1. DRO: Ask to see the elector's acceptable ID and their completed Transfer Certificate EC 50052. Check that your polling station number appears in the 'To' field
  2. Clerk: On List of Entries write
    • elector's name and street address
    • "TC" in Type of Certificate column
    • the elector's original PD and sequence number
  3. DRO: Put certificate in Office Documents Bag EC 50390
  4. Both: Serve elector following regular process — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 3, PC, step 2 of the next list

Elections Canada Transfer Certificate
Text version of "Elections Canada Transfer Certificate"

How do I use the Poll Key?

Only electors assigned to your polling station should vote at your table. You can check their assigned polling station using the Poll Key.

  1. Both: Find their street name
  2. Both: Find the range of street numbers their street number belongs to
  3. Both: Find their polling station

    Note if elector does not belong to your polling station, they cannot vote here

Poll Key By Street
Text version of "Poll Key By Street"

Situations with Ballots

The elector makes a mistake with their ballot (Spoiled Ballot)

Electors are allowed to receive a replacement ballot if they make a mistake or otherwise spoil their first one. You must keep any marks on the spoiled ballot secret.

  1. DRO: Write "spoiled" across the back without unfolding it

    Do not remove the counterfoil

  2. DRO: Put it in Envelope: Spoiled Ballots EC 50430
  3. DRO: Tell elector they get only 1 replacement ballot
  4. DRO: Issue them a replacement ballot
  5. Both: Serve elector following regular process — DRO 'What do I do when an elector arrives', step 6, PC, step 4 of the next list

The elector declines a ballot

Some electors may want to decline their ballot or protest against a candidate because they can during provincial elections. In a federal election there is no separate process for them to do this.

  1. DRO: Tell elector there is no process for protesting or refusing a ballot in federal elections
  2. DRO: If they still won't go behind the voting screen, politely ask them to give the ballot back and ask them to leave
  3. DRO: Remove counterfoil and put ballot in the box. It will be rejected at the count
  4. Clerk: Draw a line through their name on the list
  5. Clerk: Tick the "Voted" box next to their name