Thousands of young people in Ealing could find themselves unable to vote in the General Election on May 7th following reforms to voter registration.
The reforms implemented by the current coalition government require voters to register individually.
In Ealing, over 6,000 people have dropped off the electoral register since 2010. One-third of first-time voters in Northern Ireland, England and Wales fell off the Electoral Register in 2014. Those affected include some of the 10,200 young people aged between 18 and 20 in Ealing, including students and those living in the private rented sector.
There are over 3,000 students aged 18 to 20 at the local University of West London and following the changes the university cannot register students collectively.
The number of young people continuing to live at home into their thirties has also increased, adding to the problem. Nationally, a record 1 in 4 young people are now living at home into their thirties.
In the run-up to the general election Rupa Huq says ‘On May 7th. Britain faces a choice between two different plans for its future. The outcome will affect the lives of our young people. Over the last 5 years we have seen the cost of education rise and the prospects of home ownership fall dramatically. It is unacceptable that so many young people are set to miss out on their chance to have their say. I hope as many people as possible will register to vote before the deadline.’
Local Hanwell resident and 18-year-old first-time voter Tom Devlin states ‘I think it’s important to vote because it’s one of the ways that you can truly change the country and have someone who represents you when decisions are being made’.
The deadline for voter registration is Monday 20th April. You can register and find out more at www.aboutmyvote.co.uk - DO IT NOW!
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