Parliamentary Parties Panel minutes: 7 February 2023

Any other business

PD said that a recent accessibility working group meeting had featured Northern Ireland’s Chief Electoral Officer Virginia McVea, who had outlined accessibility measures taken at the last NI election, including a telephone helpline listing the candidates on the ballot paper in order to assist blind and partially sighted voters. He suggested that parties could learn lessons and build on this, but that DLUHC recognised the challenges of multiple elections and sets of candidates.

AM said that parties were looking for ways to make information about candidates more accessible, but asked for reassurance about whether this would affect candidates’ spending returns. 

JB asked about gifts in kind regarding prizes for auctions. He asked whether if someone plans to purchase and donate a holiday for an auction prize but don’t do so until the time of the auction, whether the value should be calculated when the person offers it, or when they actually buy the prize. LE said that the Commission will look at these issues.

The next meeting was agreed for Tuesday 6 June 2023. 

Commission actionsStatus
Share the polling station handbook with parties. 
Consider issue of gifts in kind regarding prizes for auctions.