Fears for democracy if people don't vote

1:20pm Saturday 15th February 2014

By Gina Bebbington

THE democratic process is at risk because of the number of people who are not registered to vote, according to Northwich councillors.

Hundreds of households in Northwich town centre have no right to say who they want to see in power because they have not signed the Register of Electors.

Figures were revealed by Clr Brian Jamieson at the latest Northwich Town Council meeting.

“In December, 22 per cent of the 2,643 properties in Bridge ward had no registered electors in the property,” he said.

“That’s 589 of those properties not registered to vote.

“I know it’s not compulsory but it weakens the democratic process.

“Something needs to be done here.

“It was a bit of shock to see that so many properties aren’t registered.”

His views have been echoed by Julia Tickridge, the Labour candidate for the Weaver Vale seat, who fears that there are many groups, including young people, who are under-represented at elections.

“As the Labour Party candidate for Weaver Vale it was quite an eye-opener for me to learn that at the 2010 election the turnout across the constituency was only 66 per cent,” she said.

“This means that just two thirds of the people eligible to vote decided who the MP would be for everyone else.

“This is even more significant in key marginal constituencies like Weaver Vale where your vote could well determine which political party gets into government and sets the country’s agenda for the next five years.

“I strongly urge first time voters in Northwich who feel their interests are not being properly represented to register to vote.

“If you don’t vote, you can’t make your voice heard”

To register visit AboutmyVote.co.uk, or contact Cheshire West and Chester Council.

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