Kushti Bok, a Gypsy and Traveller led campaign charity in Dorset, has called on Gypsies and Travellers in Dorset, who either live there in houses and on sites or who have no permanent address, to register to vote in the June 8th General Election.
“We at Kushti Bok believe that Gypsies and Travellers are underrepresented in British politics,” say Kushti Bok.
“We believe that it is easy for politicians to ignore people who do not vote and understand that it is sometimes difficult for Gypsies and Travellers to gain access to the political system. With this in mind we have tried to provide information which will enable those who wish to exercise their right to vote in the forthcoming General Election.”
“In order to vote you need to be on the Electoral Register. You do not need a permanent address to be on the Electoral Register as you can fill in a form called the ''Electoral Registration Form for Someone With No Fixed or Permanent Address'.”
“Do not be palmed off with the 'Declaration of Local Connection' form – it is out of date. The correct form can be obtained by 'phoning your local authority.”
In order to vote in June 2017 general election you will have to be on the Electoral Register before 22nd May 2017.
“We are told by a Council Elections Officer that the process of registering only takes 3 or 4 days once they have received the form, but we would advise registration as soon as possible in case of any complications.”
Step 1: Get 'Electoral Registration Form for Someone With No Fixed or Permanent Address' from your Local Authority (same numbers apply if you do have a permanent address and wish to register to vote):
East Dorset District Council - Main phone line: 01202 795096
North Dorset District Council - Main phone line: 01258 454111
Purbeck District Council - Main phone line: 01929 556561
West Dorset District Council (also Weymouth and Portland) - Main phone line: 01305 251010
Step 2: Complete form
Step 3: Return completed form to local authority (you may like to provide evidence of ID, ie copy of passport or driving licence – this will save time)
Step 4: Information checked against NI number. If matched applicant added to register. If unmatched ID used to verify or if no ID someone already on Electoral Register may affirm the application.
Step 5: Applicant added to register, confirmation letter sent to applicant. This address can be the local town hall if you have no way of receiving post.
(Main Picture – Betty Billington from Kushti Bok)