Make sure you register to vote - Labour of course!
by Ian Hollingworth
Even if we can't vote in them, the May local elections should act as a wake up call for all of us to get our voting arrangements well in place before the next general election. Do not leave everything to the last minute. Your campaign coordinators have produced this aide-memoire to help you get all your ducks in a row.
Registering to Vote
It is important to act in good time. If you are not registered you can register as an overseas voter if you are a British citizen and you have been on a UK electoral register at any time within the past 15 years. If you have never registered before, do so as soon as you next visit the UK.
You can apply to register to vote online. You will need your National Insurance number and your passport. Or download a form to apply by post. Don't forget to renew your registration annually.
Some local authorities may take registrations over the phone. You can find the contact details of your Electoral Registration Officer (ERO) by entering your last UK postcode.
Voting by Proxy
Proxy is the best road to take. Anyone can act as your proxy, as long as they are registered to vote. Your proxy can vote in person or by post. If your proxy votes at the same polling station as you would (e.g. neighbour in UK), ensure your proxy can vote in person - it is easier for them.
Proxy Vote Application Form
Alternatively, if your proxy lives elsewhere they can vote by post from anywhere in the UK. Any proxy can vote for 2 people at the same election, or more if the extra people are close relatives. The proxy needs to fills in a form and it needs to be with the ERO at least 15 days before an election.
Application Form for Proxy to Vote by Post
The quickest way to deal with the paperwork is to do everything online. Anything that requires a signature can be printed, signed, scanned and returned electronically. If you don't have these facilities at home there is probably a print shop near you that does. You can also photograph and send the signed form electronically.
If you don't have a proxy (family member, friend, neighbour etc) you can always contact your local candidate. If they are not responsive then LI will try and help. All forms must be sent to the Electoral Services Division of your local authority in the UK.
More information about Voting by Proxy
If you still want to vote by post, make sure you put a stamp on the return envelope, even if it is reply paid.