Tips for advocating during the election

Voting with Dementia

If you are a person living with dementia you have the right to vote. If you are caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia, please respect their right if they wish to vote. Elections Canada has many options, tools, and resources to help.

Voting Before Election Day
Going to a polling station on Monday, October 21, might be overwhelming for someone with dementia. It could be very busy with line ups. Below are two options for voting before Election Day which may be easier for some:

  • Continuous Polls
    • Elections Canada will have their offices open every day until Tuesday, October 15 at 6:00 p.m. To find a location nearest you, visit the Elections Canada website and type in your postal code, or call them at 1-800-463-6868.
  • Advanced Polls
    • Your local polling station (which you can find on the Voter Information Card that Elections Canada mails) will be open from 9:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. starting on Friday, October 11 until Monday, October 14.

Transportation to Vote
Whether you choose to vote in a continuous poll, an advanced poll, or on Election day - if you have a party of choice they will drive you to a poll. Find your local candidates here.

Accessibility in the Voting Booth
Elections Canada has many tools and services available to make voting as accessible as possible. When you go to vote, please let them know if you need assistance from them or a person you have brought with you.

Things That May Help You from the Elections Canada Website:

  • Assistance Marking Your Ballot

    • If you need help to mark your ballot, bring a support person (such as a family member, friend, personal support worker, or intervener) to help you vote. To protect the secrecy of your vote, Elections Canada ask that this person take an oath before you vote.

    • Election workers can also assist you if you need help marking your ballot. In this case, they always have a second election worker present to act as a witness.

  • They have improved the design of their ballot since the last election. The ballots are bigger and the candidate names are in large print to make it easier for you to read.

  • There is a braille lists of candidates.

  • A large-print list of candidates is available at advance polls and on Election Day. The list of candidates looks exactly like the ballot, but is 2.5 times bigger. You can take this list with you behind the voting screen and refer to it when you mark your ballot.

  • Large-grip pencils and extra-large pencils are available to help you mark your ballot.


Dementia Statistics in Nova Scotia:

  • There are an estimated 17,000 Nova Scotians living with dementia this year. 1

  • By 2033, over 25,000 people will be living with dementia in Nova Scotia.1

  • Nova Scotia is projected to spend over $36.2M in total direct healthcare system costs attributed to dementia by 2031.1

  • By 2031, the total out of pocket costs to caregivers of people with dementia are projected to rise to over $61,000 in Nova Scotia.1


How YOU Can Take Action This Election:

  • Ask for a meeting with your local candidates by calling, emailing, or sending a letter to their constituency or campaign office.

  • Post/share on social media on dementia issues and priorities.

  • Share stories and experiences directly with candidates by sending a letter to their campaign office or team.

  • Ask questions about where a candidate/party stands on issues relating to dementia when candidates or canvassers come to your door.

  • Attend an all-candidate debate and ask questions. 


Questions To Ask Your Candidates Before You Vote:

Question 1:
If your party forms the next government, will you commit to making dementia a public health priority by creating public awareness of brain health and the importance of early diagnosis?

Question 2:
There are 17,000 Nova Scotians living with dementia. By 2038, there will be double that. Do you consider dementia to be a top health care priority on which our elected representatives must act?

Question 3:
It is estimated less than 11% of Nova Scotians on the dementia journey are accessing available support though the ASNS. If elected, will you advocate for and support continued investments in education and programs to better meet the needs of people living with dementia, their partners in care, and their families? 

Question 4:
From 2008-2038, it's estimated that Nova Scotia will spend over $24.5 billion in direct health costs, unpaid caregivers costs, and indirect costs. Will you make enhanced care, and supports and services for people living with dementia a priority this election?

Question 5:
Stigma stops us from having candid conversations and creating opportunities to make a difference for people living with dementia. Will you make inclusive and supportive environment a priority.


  • 1 Alzheimer Society of Canada. Prevalence and Monetary Costs of Dementia in Canada. Toronto. Alzheimer Society of Canada, 2016.

Last Updated: 10/03/2019