A new campaign aims to encourage homeless people to sign up to vote in this year’s council elections. Housing and homeless charity Shelter Scotland has teamed up with the Electoral Commission for the initiative. As well as urging homeless people to register to vote, it will encourage those in temporary accommodation and people renting properties to put their name on the electoral roll. Research by the Electoral Commission last April found only 56% of those living in rented accommodation were registered to vote, compared with 88% of owner occupiers. Andy O’Neill, head of the Electoral Commission in Scotland, said people living in temporary accommodation may not realise they can still register to vote using their temporary address.
Those with no fixed address are still entitled to vote in the elections, as long as they are over 18 and a UK Commonwealth or European Union citizen. They can register using a temporary address, such as a hostel, or can alternatively make a “declaration of a local connection” – a statement to their local electoral office stating where they spend most of their time. Mr O’Neill said: “We want to make sure everyone who is eligible to vote can vote.”
Full Article: The Press Association: Homeless targeted in voting drive.