British expats: Don’t lose your vote in the forthcoming European Parliament elections
The European Parliament elections are
just over 12 weeks away, but whilst millions of British expatriates are eligible to vote, many of them will be unable to have their say unless they take action now.
It’s simple: if you’re a British citizen living in any Country of the European Union and have been registered to vote
in the UK within the last 15 years, you are eligible to vote in the European Parliamentary elections in
THE UK. But if you are not on the electoral register back in the UK, you won’t be able to. If
that’s you, why not take five minutes now to print off a registration form at www.aboutmyvote.co.uk?
really important to allow plenty of time to return your form. Although changes are coming, for the election in May 2014, the only way for expats to register is by posting the form to the local authority where they were last registered to vote in the UK. This must be returned by Tuesday 6 May if you want to want to cast a vote in the elections.
The latest research shows that, whilst 5.5 million UK citizens may be living abroad, fewer than 20,000 overseas voters were on the UK electoral registers at the end of 2012. Whilst many may have made the decision not to vote, others may not be aware that they can still do so once they have
left the UK.
Research by the UK Electoral Commission has also shown that 44% of those not registered to vote mistakenly believe that they are – so
it’s really important to double check. You can do this by calling or emailing the electoral registration officer at your last local authority in the UK. If you’re not sure who this is, you can use the postcode search on www.aboutmyvote.co.uk to find their
How to vote
When you have registered to vote you’ll need to consider exactly how you will cast your
vote. There are two ways that British expatriates can do this: by post and by proxy (where you nominate a person you trust in the UK to vote on your behalf).
the earliest, postal ballot papers are only sent out just over two weeks before the election, so it’s important to think about whether this will allow you enough time for you to return it to the UK. Appointing a proxy is often the best way that expatriates can ensure that their vote is cast on time.
The deadline to apply for a postal vote is 7
May 2014, and the deadline to apply for a proxy vote is 14 May 2014. Application forms are available from www.aboutmyvote.co.uk.
If you’re confident that you’re
already on the register, why not use this chance to join the campaign and spread the message amongst your friends and family?
Here’s what you can do:
<!--[if !supportLists]-->· Place a short article on your
<!--[if !supportLists]-->· Tweet a link or telling your friends and family that printable overseas registration forms are available from www.aboutmyvote.co.uk.
<!--[if !supportLists]- ->· Use
our campaign web button or email signature on your website and email. These are available to download here under the ‘Promoting voting
The Electoral Comission have targetted the following expat radio stations in their campaign:-
Radio Canada International
Radio France Internationale
BBC World Service
Radio New Zealand International
Trans World Radio
Central FM on the Costa del Sol
Ace FM in Alhaurin & Coin in mainland Spain
On Radio One Mallorca
Talk Radio Europe
Cool FM Spain
Wave 96 FM
Holiday FM Radio
UAE - Dubai
Virgin Radio Dubai
Here is a list of European radio stations who you might like to contact although not all of them are applicable to our campaign and the right to vote; http://www.listenlive.eu/index.html Unfortunately
we do not have similar lists of radio stations for the rest of the world, however if anybody has any please let me know and I will forward them to the Electoral Commission, thanks.
Please remember: the deadline to register to vote is, Tuesday 6th May. It´s your vote, don´t lose it!
www.votes-for-expat-brits.com & www.votes-for-expat-brits-blog.com