`

Tyneside residents risk losing their vote if they fail to regaister under new legislation

editorial image

More than 3,300 people across South Tyneside are at risk of losing their vote if they fail to register under new legislation.

During July and August, South Tyneside Council’s Elections Team sent Household Enquiry Forms to more than 70,000 homes across the Borough to collect the information needed to update the Register of Electors and to identify all those entitled to vote. Local people were asked to check the information printed on their form and respond immediately, if changes were required.

As part of a drive to ensure that all those who are entitled to vote are registered, the Elections Team has issued reminders to households which have not responded, as well as making personal visits and sending invitations to register to new occupants.

However, there are still over 800 people who, although they have been registered in previous years, have not registered individually and now risk coming off the new Register of Electors.

A further 2,500 potential electors, identified via the Household Enquiry Forms as being entitled to vote, have also been sent invitations to register themselves individually.

The Council publishes a new Register of Electors every year. However, those people who have not registered individually by Friday 20 November, cannot be included on the next Register of Electors, which is published on 1 December 2015.

People are urged to register online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote by the closing date of Friday 20 November to ensure their right to vote is protected.

Councillor Alan Kerr, Deputy Leader of South Tyneside Council with responsibility for democratic renewal, said: “The Council has a duty to maintain an accurate electoral register and it is very important that all adults and young people over the age of 16 living in the Borough are on it. People need to be on the register to be able to vote.

“New legislation means that everyone is now responsible for registering themselves. There may be people who have registered to vote for many years, but will not be on the next Register of Electors because they have not responded to requests for information to enable us to update the register under the new rules.

“We would strongly recommend all those who have not registered individually to do so as soon as possible.”

People can register online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote