Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Don't lose your vote

By the end of this month, you should receive a letter from South Glos Council telling you if you need to take action to join the new Electoral Register.

Most people who are currently registered have been added to the new register automatically, and the letter will let you know if this applies to you. Some people have not been added to the new register automatically and these people will need to re-register. The letter will tell you if you are in this group, and what you need to do to re-register.

The letters are a result of a new registration system called Individual Electoral Registration (IER). The aim is to modernise the way people register to vote and help tackle electoral fraud. You may need to take action to join the new individual electoral register, even if you are currently registered to vote.

Under the new system:
  • everyone is responsible for registering themselves (under the old system the ‘head of household’ could register everyone who lived at their address) 
  • you can now register online 
  • you need to provide a few more details to register (your national insurance number and date of birth). This is to make the electoral register more secure. These details are checked against government records to help make sure that registrations are genuine. 
If you're not on the electoral register, you won't be able to vote in next year's elections. You could also be at risk of an £80 fine if you don't respond to requests for information from the council and you need to be registered to apply for credit, as credit reference agencies use the register to prevent fraud.

If you are a South Gloucestershire resident and you haven’t received a registration letter by the end of August then please contact the electoral services team by calling 01454 863030 or by emailing electoral.services@southglos.gov.uk If you need to register or re-register please visit www.gov.uk/register-to-vote

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