Local Government: Elections

Cabinet Office written question – answered on 24th April 2019.

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Photo of Jim Cunningham Jim Cunningham Labour, Coventry South

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps the Government is taking to increase voter (a) registration and (b) turnout at local government elections in May.

Photo of Chloe Smith Chloe Smith The Parliamentary Secretary, Cabinet Office, Assistant Whip

The Government is committed to building upon recent record levels of electors registering to vote and participating in elections. One year on from the Democratic Engagement Plan the Government published its follow up report, Democratic Engagement: Respecting, Protecting and Promoting Our Democracy, setting out progress in 2018 and priorities for 2019 and beyond.

The UK Government will help equip councils and civil society groups to improve engagement in democratic events such as at the upcoming local elections in May. This will be achieved by: sharing our knowledge and products, including our Suffrage Centenary 'Educate' projects for young people; insight and solutions to tackle barriers to electoral registration for ethnic minorities and those who are homeless or move frequently; by evaluating progress on student registration; and we have an ‘Easy Read’ guide on the Register to Vote website homepage, produced in partnership with the Royal Mencap Society, to make it easier for people with learning difficulties to apply online.

Since its introduction in 2014, the Individual Electoral Registration digital service has been a huge success, facilitating over 38 million applications; with over 75% of these being made online.

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