Photography via Mariel Richards
There is a general election taking place in the UK on 12 December, and we hope that, like us, you are ready and raring to kick the Tories out. But don’t get caught out, the voter registration deadline is on Tuesday 26 November, which is just less than a week away. In a time of political turmoil and despair, every vote really does count. So we’ve put together a comprehensive list of everyone who is eligible to vote in the upcoming UK general election. If you meet the following criteria*, and haven’t registered to vote yet, what are you waiting for?
1. UK and Irish citizens
If you are a UK or Irish citizen, you can vote.
2. Commonwealth citizens
If you are a Commonwealth citizen with leave to enter or remain in the UK, or who does not require that leave, you can vote. Here is a list of eligible Commonwealth countries.
3. People with no fixed address
You don’t need to live at a fixed address to register to vote. You just need to give an address of where you would be living if the circumstances were different, where you have lived in the past, or where you currently spend a substantial amount of your time. According to homelessness charity Crisis, this can be: “a day service, night shelter, or an address nearest to, for example, a park bench, a bus shelter or the doorway to a high-street store”.
To register to vote without a fixed address, you just need to fill out and return this form, which you can get from your electoral registration office, or you can download and print the form yourself. You will need to return it to your electoral registration office in person, by post or by email.
This form applies to:
- People who are homeless
- People remanded in custody
- Patients in mental health hospitals, including those detained under the mental health act
- Part of the Gypsy or travelling community
- Living on a boat or movable residence
- And people who have no fixed address for any other reason
4. Anyone who is unable to, or has difficulty, leaving the house
If you, for whatever reason, are unable to leave the house or have difficulty doing so, you can register to vote by post or by proxy. You don’t need to give a reason.
5. Anyone with a learning disability or neurological condition
If you have a learning disability or neurological condition, a friend, family member or carer can support you in the process of voting. A person of your choosing can discuss the ballot options with you, and you have the right to bring someone into the polling booth to support you in marking your ballot if you need it. If you wish to make your needs clear on the day, you can print a voting passport to take to the polls here.
6. Eligible UK citizens who are on holiday
If you’re going to be on holiday, or out of the country for any other reason on 12 December, you can register to vote by proxy or post.
7. Eligible UK citizens living abroad
As long as you moved away from the UK within the last 15 years, and were registered to vote in the UK within the previous 15 years, you can vote by proxy or postal vote. In some cases, if you were too young to vote when you left the UK, you can also vote.
8. 17-year-olds whose 18th birthday is between now and the general election
You have to be 18 to vote, but you can register when you are 16 or over – which is vital info for any 17-year-olds who are turning 18 between now and the general election. If you fall into this bracket, you can vote, and you can register now. Don’t let confusion about voting age stop you from registering before Tuesday.
9. Survivors of domestic abuse who want to register anonymously
If you are a survivor of domestic abuse and want to omit your name and address from the electoral register, you can do so here. If you are concerned for any other reason that being on the electoral register could put your safety at risk, you can also use this form (you will be asked to provide a reason).
10. Plus, if you’re a student, you can choose where you vote
You can either vote in your home or your uni town – and again, you can utilise the postal or proxy vote system if you don’t want to physically travel to the town you’re voting in. Use your choice wisely, and tactically.
If you cannot vote
Whether you can vote in this election on, you can still have conversations with friends and relatives who can vote. You could ask people around you, particularly anyone who is undecided on who to vote for, to vote for a party who is championing policies that are important to you.
With the stakes as high as they currently are, we can’t afford to take any risks when it comes to being disenfranchised. If you fit the criteria above, register to vote now (it just takes one minute), to end this Tory government once and for all.
*You must be aged 18 or over on 12 December to vote