From 4 May, the law is changing to require voters in Britain to have an acceptable form of photo ID – also known as ‘voter ID’ – in order to be able to vote in some elections. From that date, voter ID will be required at local elections in England, parliamentary by-elections in Britain, and police and crime commissioner elections in England and Wales. Voter ID will also be required across Britain at any general elections held after 5 October. Voter ID is already a requirement in all elections in Northern Ireland.
As a result of this new law, it’s really important that every voter in the UK makes sure they have an acceptable photo ID. The list of acceptable photo IDs is below, with the most common two being a passport and a driving license. But for voters who don’t have any of them, they can now apply for a free voter authority certificate. Voters must apply by 5 pm 25 April to receive it in time for the English local elections on 4 May.
Humanists UK has partnered with the Greater London Authority (GLA) and Shout Out UK to support their new #NoVoteNoVoice campaign – which is encouraging people to both register to vote and to make sure they have the right form of photo ID. The campaign brings together a diverse coalition of schools, charities, and London borough electoral services to inform the public about the new voting requirements affecting upcoming elections. It is important because polling shows that 61% of Londoners are not aware of the forthcoming photo ID requirement in order to vote and 11% do not hold a form of approved photo voter ID specified in the Elections Act.
Voters outside London can find out more information about the new law, including how to register to vote and how to register for a voter authority certificate, on the Electoral Commission website.
Humanists UK Director of Public Affairs and Policy Richy Thompson said:
‘We believe that every adult citizen should have the right to have their say in the democratic process. This campaign is vital in making sure that more people are aware of the changes to voter ID laws and are able to exercise their right to vote.’
Humanists UK is urging people to register to vote on the Government website, and to share information about the new law with their friends and family. People can also join the social media campaign using the hashtags #NoVoteNoVoice and #VoterID to raise awareness and encourage participation.
Humanists UK will also be writing to its members and supporters to make sure they are aware of the change in the law.
Photo ID that will be accepted at polling stations
You will need to show one form of photo ID from the list below. It must be the original version and not a photocopy.
- A United Kingdom passport
- A passport issued by an EEA state or a Commonwealth country
- A national identity card issued by an EEA state
- A UK driving licence
- A driving licence issued by the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or an EEA state
- Electoral Identity Card issued in Northern Ireland
- A biometric immigration document
- An identity card bearing the Proof of Age Standards Scheme hologram (a PASS card)
- A Ministry of Defence Form 90 (Defence Identity Card)
- Concessionary travel passes funded by the UK Government: Older Person’s Bus Pass, Disabled Person’s Bus Pass, Oyster 60+ Card, Freedom Pass
- Concessionary travel passes funded by the Welsh Government: 60 and Over Welsh Concessionary Travel Card, Disabled Person’s Welsh Concessionary Travel Card
- Concessionary travel passes issued by Northern Ireland government services: Senior SmartPass, Registered Blind SmartPass or Blind Person’s SmartPass, War Disablement SmartPass, 60+SmartPass, Half Fare SmartPass
- A Blue Badge
- A free Voter Authority Certificate
- Anonymous Elector’s Document
For further comment or information, media should contact Humanists UK Director of Public Affairs and Policy Richy Thompson at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 020 7324 3072 or 07534 248 596.
For more information about the new Voter ID laws, please see the the Electoral Commission website or visit the Greater London Authority’s #NoVoteNoVoice campaign.
You can register for a free Voter Authority Certificate on GOV.UK.
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