Voters Able To Enrol Online At Elections Website
Voters Now Able To Enrol Online At Elections Website
Eligible electors are now able to enrol and update their enrolment details online at the elections website www.elections.org.nz.
The new online enrolment services were officially launched today by the Associate Minister of Justice Margaret Wilson and the Minister for Information Technology Paul Swain.
“The new services are designed to make it simpler, easier and more convenient for people to enrol and keep their enrolment details up to date,” said Ms Wilson. “Eligible electors can now do this at any time of the day or night, without having to leave their home or office.”
Eligible electors simply need to click on the ‘enrol online’ button at the site’s home page and follow some simple steps to fill in their enrolment details. They can then download and print off an enrolment form with their details already filled in, sign this and send it to New Zealand Post’s Electoral Enrolment Centre (EEC) to complete the process. Alternatively, EEC will send a pre-printed personalised enrolment form for them to check, sign and send back. Electors can also update their enrolment details online at the site.
Ms Wilson said the new services will be particularly useful for eligible electors living in remote areas or overseas, as well as those who have disabilities.
“We also hope the new services will encourage more young people to enrol.” Youth are traditionally among the hardest groups to encourage to enrol, with around 82% of people in the 18-29 age group enrolled compared to around 91% of the general voting population.
The new services were developed by Wellington based software company, Datacom Systems Limited and are considered to be a world first. While other electoral websites allow electors to check their enrolment status or details, no other site allows people to enrol or update their details online.
“This is another great example of a kiwi company leading the way in the technology field and supporting the e-government strategy,” said Paul Swain. “The site is also an excellent example of how technology can be used to make it easier for New Zealanders to access government services online.”
As well as information on enrolment, the elections website contains details on other aspects of the electoral system including election results, electorate maps, an explanation of the voting system, and a lot more.
“We review and update the site on a regular basis to ensure it is a really useful place for people to go to find information,” said EEC National Manager Murray Wicks. “We’re also continuously looking for ways to add new services or functionality to enhance the site and use it as a way to make the enrolment process more accessible.”
Mr Wicks said the website receives on average 15,000 hits per month during periods when there is no specific electoral campaign running. During the 1999 election year, the site received over 700,000 hits.
The site was highlighted in a recent international report on the online capability of various government services around the world by global management and technology consultancy Accenture. The New Zealand section of the report recommends the elections website as a site to visit, describing it as a “well organised interactive site with clear information and simple instructions”.