Ahead of advance polling day on Thursday (February 21), Supervisor of Elections Juliette Penn has issued a warning to employers not to bar their employees from voting or penalising their workers who are absent for a period to vote.
The election laws mandate that every employer must permit every voter under his/her employ “a reasonable period for voting”.
Any employer found guilty, in any way, of preventing their workers from voting will be fined and imprisoned.
While citing the territory’s election laws, Penn said: “Any employer who, directly or indirectly, refuses, or by intimidation, undue influence, or in any other way, interferes with the granting to any voter in his employ, of such period for voting, as in this section provided, shall be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine of five hundred dollars and to imprisonment for six months.”
Penn, in a media release Wednesday afternoon, also warned against “political propaganda” on polling day.
“No person shall furnish or supply any loudspeaker, bunting, ensign, banner, standard or set of colours, or any other flag to any person with intent that it shall be carried, worn or used on motor cars, trucks or other vehicles, as political propaganda on polling day. No person shall with any such intent carry, wear or use on motor cars, trucks or other vehicles, any such loudspeaker, bunting, ensign, banner, standard or set of colours, or any other flag on polling day,” the Elections Act says.
Other things Penn said were not permitted on polling day include selling or giving away alcohol at “any premises situated in any electoral district in which an election is being held”.
The use of cell phones are also not permitted at the polls.
Meanwhile, persons eligible to vote will need their voter registration card OR other government-issued identification such as a passport, driver’s licence or Belonger card.
In the event that they do not have one, they will not be deterred from voting, Penn said.
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