It’s annual canvass time – why everyone should respond
Residents across the Stroud district are being asked to respond to the electoral registration forms that will be dropping through their letter boxes this week.
All householders of voting age must respond, even if there are no changes to their details.
Hannah Emery, the council’s principal elections officer, said:
“People often think that if the electoral make-up of the household is unchanged they don’t need to respond, however everyone needs to – even if it’s just to confirm there are no changes. By far the quickest and easiest way to respond is online.
Alternatively people can reply by text message or by calling a free phone number on the form. Responses can also be made by completing the paper form and posting it back, however this does have a cost to the council at a time when budgets are increasingly stretched.”
The electoral register needs to be as accurate and up-to-date as possible and it is necessary to update it every year. By law, every household must respond to the letter, even if they have recently registered.
Miss Emery added:
“Anyone that wants to vote must be registered – so they need to reply to this form. It’s particularly important that anyone who has changed address recently looks out for the form and checks that they are registered at their new home.
Not being registered can also have an impact on your personal finances. Credit references use the electoral register to perform identity checks. If you’re not registered, you may find it difficult to open a bank account or obtain a loan or mortgage. You could even find it difficult to qualify for something straightforward such as a mobile phone contract or receive credit from utility companies. It’s another good reason to register to vote.”
Anyone who has not received their form by Monday, 20 August should call the elections helpline on 01453 754886.
A short film explaining how to respond to the forms is available online www.stroud.gov.uk/annualcanvassfilm