Home Knowsley Council Your vote is yours alone – protect it at the May elections
Image shows a woman being crowded in a voting booth by two other people

Your vote is yours alone – protect it at the May elections

by Jonathan Kearney

Knowsley Council is supporting a campaign that has been launched by the Electoral Commission and Crimestoppers,  to help prevent electoral fraud ahead of May’s local elections.

In any election in the UK, a person’s vote belongs to them alone. It is illegal for anyone to influence a person to vote against their will.

The impact of electoral fraud on voters can be significant. It takes away their right to vote as they want – whether through intimidation, bribery or by impersonating someone in order to cast a vote in their place. The Your vote is yours alone campaign aims to raise awareness of what constitutes unacceptable pressure or influence on whether or how someone casts their vote.

Ahead of the May elections Knowsley Council is encouraging voters to get to know the signs of electoral fraud and how they can anonymously report cases if someone tries to take their vote.

Ailsa Irvine, Director of Electoral Administration and Guidance at the Electoral Commission, said:

“Whether you are voting in person at a polling station on 6 May or completing your postal vote at home, it’s important that your vote is yours alone. No one should feel pressured to vote a certain way. While proven cases of electoral fraud are rare, it remains a serious crime and those who commit it can be sentenced to time in prison.”

Mark Hallas, Chief Executive of the charity Crimestoppers, said:

“The UK has a long tradition of maintaining a trustworthy electoral system where abuses, such as voter fraud, are thankfully rare. However, when it does happen it undermines that reputation, which is why it’s crucial that anyone who has concerns or suspicions speaks up anonymously via our charity.

“Our UK Contact Centre is open 24/7 and available online via Crimestoppers-uk.org or by calling freephone 0800 555 111. We never ask or take personal details and have always kept our promise of anonymity to everyone who trusts us with their information.”

You can find out more about the forthcoming elections here.