General Election and Voter Registration

The next UK General Election will be taking place on Thursday 12th December 2019. 

At MDXSU we are dedicated to ensuring the views of students and young people are heard. We want to make sure you are all registered to vote and able to cast your vote in the next election. 

Not sure if you're registered? What to know a bit more about voting? Read on for our FAQs, or click the quick links below to view a specific question.

-  So, what do I need to know?
-  How do I register to vote?
-  I’m not sure if I'm eligible to vote 
-  I’ve not voted before - how does it work? 
-  Why should I vote?
-  Who should I vote for?
-  I am not here on election day, what do I do?
 


So, what do I need to know?

The next General Election is scheduled for Thursday 12th December 2019. This means that the deadline to register to vote is likely to be Tuesday 26th November, but keep an eye out on this page which will be updated as soon as a deadline has been confirmed from the election commission.

How do I register to vote?

All eligible voters should register online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote

All you need to register are your personal details, including where you live - whether that’s here in Hendon, London or elsewhere in the UK - and your National Insurance Number. If your home and term-time addresses are different, give the address you would prefer to vote from on an election day. You are entitled to register at both your home address and university address -  but you can still only vote once in a general election! 

I’m not sure if I can I vote

To vote in a General Election you must:

  • be registered to vote
  • be 18 or over on the day of the election (‘polling day’)
  • be a British, Irish or qualifying Commonwealth citizen, or an EU citizen living in the UK
  • be resident at an address in the UK (or a British citizen living abroad who has been registered to vote in the UK in the last 15 years)
  • not be legally excluded from voting

Not all students studying in the UK are eligible to vote in the general election. To vote, you must be a British or Irish citizen, at least 18 years old and registered to vote. Citizens from a qualifying Commonwealth nation, the EU or a British Overseas Territory will also be eligible to vote if you have registered, however you should check whether voting in the UK would have any effect on your rights in your home country. Click here for more information.

I’ve not voted before - how does it work?

Whenever the election takes place you will not be alone - the next election will be the first time that many people have voted. You can vote locally in person (either near your student accommodation, or at home), by post, or by proxy. Click here for more information.

How to vote:

  • Find out which polling station you need to go. This will be on your polling card (that will be sent to your registered address). You don’t need to take your polling card with you when you vote but it helps!
  • When you arrive at your polling station (opening times 7am – 10pm) you will need to give your name and address to the staff so that they can check you’re on the electoral register.
  • You will then be given a ballot paper listing the candidates that you can vote for and the parties that they represent. Read the ballot paper carefully as this will tell you how to vote. You will then go into a private booth to cast your vote.
  • Once you have marked your vote, fold your paper in half and put it in the ballot box. If you write anything else on your ballot paper your vote may not be counted. It could be counted as a spoiled ballot.
  • You’re not allowed to take photos inside the polling station, but you can take a celebratory “I’ve just voted” selfie outside and share it with us at #MDXReady2Vote on Instagram or Twitter.

Where do I go to vote?

As long as you have registered to vote, you will receive a polling card to your address before the election which will have your local polling station marked on it. Local polling stations to the university are listed here, or you can click here to search for your local polling station according to the address you are registered at.

Why should I vote?

Democracy is about people having their say and it is your right to vote and to be heard. People have fought and died for the right to vote for many years, and in many places around the world they still are. Voting in an election is about deciding who will represent you, and will make decisions that affect you.

This is your chance to vote for people and policies that you believe in.

Who should I vote for?

That bit is totally down to you and your choice! You should vote for a party that represents your views and will make the changes and decisions that you want to see. Each political party and candidate will publish a manifesto (a statement telling you their views and what they want to achieve), and there will be lots of commentary and coverage of the elections and their views. 

I am not here on election day, what do I do?

If you cannot vote in person, either at your university address or home address,  you should look into voting by post, or by proxy. Click here for more information. Either way, you will still need to register!

Voting by proxy: If you are unable to visit your polling station yourself - due to a physical condition, or being on holiday, for example - you can apply to have someone you trust cast your vote in your place. Click here for more information.

Voting by post: In England, Scotland and Wales, if you are unable to visit your polling station yourself for various reason you can apply to vote by post. You will need to complete a form, print it, sign it and send it back to your local authority. Click here for more information.