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NAW 37 FAQs NAW Powered By Docstoc
					The referendum on the voting system
for UK Parliamentary elections and
elections to the National Assembly for

Issues and actions for
staff supporting the voting
system for UK Parliamentary
elections and elections to the
National Assembly for Wales

1    How to use this guide

2    Registration

3    Postal and proxy voting

4    How/where to vote

5    Overseas voters

6    Service voters and Crown Servants

7    Access issues

8    The election and referendum in your area

9    Count, results etc

10   Referendum campaigners and election candidates

11   The Electoral Commission

12   List of Commonwealth countries, British Overseas
     Territories and European Union member states

1 How to use this guide
1.1 This publication has been designed as a resource for
Counting Officers to support the training and briefing of
support staff working on the voting system for UK
Parliamentary elections and elections to the National Assembly
for Wales.

     The deadlines included in this document have been
    calculated using the timetable for a 5 May 2011

1.2 The FAQ guide can be used either as a resource to
reinforce key messages from briefing/training sessions for
support staff or as an information and reference tool to be
used in conjunction with locally produced information sources.

1.3 The material has been designed for staff who do not
normally work in the field of elections or referendums and
provides basic procedural guidance which can be passed on to
members of the public to clarify key issues around the
registration, election and referendum process. Staff are
advised to elevate more complex questions to the elections

1.4 The guide is designed for use by the following types of
staff who may be asked to support the election and referendum

   call centre staff
   local council reception staff
   staff working in information centres and one-stop shops

1.5 Staff should be reminded that there are many areas where
they are unable to comment and must not show a bias.
Therefore, all responses given should be politically neutral
and in no way be or be interpreted to be supporting one option
or the other. Staff using this document should take care not
to stray from the provided answers other than when they have
been expressly advised that they may do so by their

1.6 Staff should be given contact details for the elections
office in cases where calls are more complicated and cannot be

answered by these answers. They should also be given details
of the registration forms that they can send out to callers.

2 Registration
Issue/quest   Answer                    Action

Am I           The elections office     Transfer caller to
registered      at your local             the elections office
to vote?        authority can tell        if they need to
                you.                      check that they are
               However, if your         If you do not have
                household filled in       the details, provide
                the annual canvass        contact details from
                form that came  
                through your door         k using the callers
                between August and        postcode or direct
                November last year        them to 0800 3 280
                with your details,        280
                you should still be      Remind callers that
                registered.               registration forms
                                          need to be returned
               You will need to          to the elections
                register again if you     office on or before
                have moved home since     Thursday 14 April to
                then.                     vote on the 5 May.
                                         Tell them to
                                          download forms from
                                          k or supply any you
                                          have if you have
                                          been advised to do

How do I       By filling in a form     Send caller to the
register to     & returning it to         elections office if
vote?           your elections            they need to check
                office, the deadline      that they are
                for registration is       registered
                Thursday 14 April        If they wish,
                                          provide election
               See also Am I             office contact
                registered to vote?       details (from
                                          k or your own
                                         Tell them that
                                          registration forms
                                          need to be returned

Issue/quest   Answer                    Action

                                          to the elections
                                          office on or before
                                          Thursday 14 April.
                                         Tell them to
                                          download forms from
                                          k or offer to send a
                                          form or pass them to
                                          the elections office
                                          if you have been
                                          instructed to do so
Missed the     You have missed the      If they wish to
deadline        deadline to get on        register for future
(if caller      the register at your      elections or
calls after     current address for       referendums, then
(Thursday       the forthcoming           use the information
14 April –      election and              above
the             referendum on 5 May      If they know their
registratio     2011.                     previous postcode,
n deadline)    However, you can          you can search for
                register now for          their old election
                future elections and      office’s contact
                referendums if you        details by going to
               Suggest the caller        k.
                contacts the
                elections office
                where they think they
                should be registered
                (either now or their
                old address if they
                have moved).
How do I       By filling in a form     Process as above.
register        and returning it to
for future      your elections
referendums     office.
elections?     However, if you
                filled in the annual
                canvass form that
                came through your
                door last year and
                returned it, you do
                not need to register
                again. We can check
                to see if you are on
                the register.

Issue/quest   Answer                     Action

I sent my      It can take up to         Elevate more complex
electoral       seven weeks for your       queries to the
registratio     name to be added to        elections office.
n form in       the register.             Transfer caller to
ages ago                                   the elections office
but I’m        The register of            if they need to
still not       electors is usually        check that they are
on the          updated on a monthly       registered.
register.       basis, and there is a     If they wish,
                cut off date each          provide contact
                month for the receipt      details from
                of forms. If you 
                missed this date your      k.
                details will be
                included in the next
                month’s update.

               However, you will be
                added to the register
                in time to vote on 5
                May, so long as your
                registration form was
                received by the
                elections office
                before Thursday 14
               If you are not sure
                whether your form was
                received please
                contact your
                elections office.

What are       Use information           14 April 2011 is the
the monthly      provided to give          deadline for
cut-off          details of the            registration for the
dates? /         relevant monthly cut-     5 May.
Any              off dates:
about a       - 10 March for 1 April
specific        update
month’s cut   - 14 April for 26 April
off date.       update

Am I          You can only vote if        If they want more
eligible to   you are registered. You      info, direct them to
register to   can register if:   

Issue/quest   Answer                      Action

vote?                                      k , or use any
               you are 16 or over         contact details you
                (but you cannot vote       have been given.
                until your 18th
                birthday)                  If they don’t know
                                            whether they are a
              AND                           citizen of a
                 you are a British,        country, refer to
                  Irish or qualifying       the list of
                  Commonwealth citizen      Commonwealth
                  (i.e. you have leave      countries in section
                  to remain or don’t        12 below.
                  require leave to
                  remain) living in the    If they are a
                  UK                        Commonwealth citizen
                                            but are unsure
                 other European Union      whether they have
                  citizens can register     leave to remain or
                  to vote at certain        whether they don’t
                  elections but cannot      require leave to
                  vote in the               remain, refer them
                  referendum but are        to the elections
                  entitled to vote in       office.
                  the National Assembly
                  for Wales election       If they don’t know
                                            whether they are a
                                            citizen of a
                                            European Union
                                            member state refer
                                            to the list of EU
                                            countries in section
                                            12 below

                                           they can also
                                            register as a
                                            Service Voter or
                                            Crown Servant posted
                                            overseas – see
                                            section 6 for
                                            further information

                                           If they wish to
                                            register, see above.

                                           After 14 April
                                            process as above.

Issue/quest   Answer                    Action

If I pay       No. Registration is a
council tax     separate process
am I            performed by your
automatical     local Electoral
ly              Registration Officer.
registered?     There are different
                requirements to be
                able to register to
                vote than to pay
                council tax so one
                cannot be used to add
                names to the other.

I have         No. Registration is a    See ‘Am I registered
completed       separate process          to vote?‘ and ‘How
and             performed by your         do I register to
returned my     local Electoral           vote?’ above.
census          Registration Officer.
form, does      There are specific
this mean I     requirements to be
am              able to register to
registered      vote.
to vote?

I’m a          Students may be          Offer to give
student and     entitled to register      information on
I’m not         at either or both         registering to vote
sure where      their home address        (see ‘How do I
I should        and their university      register to vote)
register to     (term time) address.      above for that
vote.                                     information).
               However they must
                only vote once at        Remind them of 14
                each contest.             April deadline for
                                          registration for 5

                                         For more complicated
                                          queries give contact
                                          details/pass them to
                                          the elections

I’ve just      Same process as ‘How
turned 18       do I register to
and want to     vote’

Issue/quest   Answer                    Action

I’m            Yes. You can make        Transfer to
homeless /      something called a        elections office or
live on a       ‘declaration of local     supply their contact
house boat      connection’. You          details if you have
/ caravan /     should contact the        them.
in a mental     elections office.        Use
hospital /                      
remanded in                               k if needed.
can I

What are      In 2002 new legislation    Refer to the
the full      created the full and           Commission’s
and edited      the                       ‘Who has my personal
registers?    edited register of          details’ leaflet,
                electors:                 which can
                                          be downloaded from:
               The full register
                includes the names of     k/toolbox-
                all those registered      index/toolbox2/v-
                to vote in a local        z/who-has-my-
                area and is used for      personal-details
                electoral and limited
                statutory purposes       Elevate more complex
                only. One of these        queries to the
                purposes is credit        elections office.

               The edited register
                can be sold on to
                anyone for any
                purpose and includes
                the names of all
                those who have not
                ‘opted out’ of their
                details being
                included on it. You
                can opt out when you

How do I       You will need to         Elevate complex
find out if     contact your              queries to the
my details      elections office at       elections office.
are on the      your local council.

Issue/quest   Answer                    Action

register       If your details are
and how to      on the edited
remove them     register and you wish
if they         to have them removed
are?            from future versions
                of this register your
                elections office will
                be able to help.

3 Postal and proxy
Issue/question Answer                          Action

Who can apply       Anyone who is            They can download
for a postal         registered to vote        postal forms from
vote?                in Great Britain.
                                               or get them from the
                    If you are not yet        elections office.
                     registered, you can
                     submit a postal          If they wish, provide
                     vote application          the address and
                     form alongside your       contact details that
                     registration form.        you have been given or

What is the         Your application
deadline for         must be received by
applying for a       5pm on 14 April.
postal vote
for the 5 May?

If someone          You have missed the      They can download
calls after          deadline to apply         postal and proxy forms
5pm on 14            for a postal vote         from
April?               for the polls on
                     the 5 May.                or the election office
                                               website may have them
                    You may be able to        or can send one to you
                     apply for a proxy         (give details if you
                     vote up until 5pm         have them.
                     on 21 April if you
                     can’t attend the         If they wish, provide
                     polling station.          the elections office
                     You will need to          address and contact
                     state this reason         details (use
                     on the form.    
                                               if you do not have
                    You can still apply       them).
                     for a postal vote
                     for future
                     referendums and
                     elections now if

Issue/question Answer                          Action

                     you wish.

How do I get a      You can download an      They can download
postal vote?         application form          postal vote forms from
                     from            ,
                  or the elections
                     uk, or get one from       office website may
                     the elections             have them or can send
                     office.                   one to you (give
                    You need to return        details if you have
                     the form to the           them).
                     elections office.
                                              If they wish, provide
                    Remind them of the        the elections office
                     deadline (5pm 14          address and contact
                     April for 5 May           details (use
                                               if you do not have

I haven’t           You should receive       Tell them to contact
received my          it about a week           the local elections
postal ballot        before the poll.          office and ask when
paper yet.                                     they are sending out
                    If it hasn’t              postal votes if they
                     arrived 5 days            need to know exactly
                     before polling day,       when the postal votes
                     or you subsequently       will be sent.
                     lose it, you can
                     get a replacement        Ask them to contact
                     ballot paper in           the elections office
                     person from your          for details of the
                     local elections           allowed identification
                     office, up until          if they need a
                     5pm on polling day.       replacement postal
                     You will need             vote and to arrange a
                     identification.           convenient time for
                                               the replacement to be
                    If you have spoilt        made.
                     your ballot paper
                     or postal voting
                     statement, you can
                     get a replacement
                     until 5pm on
                     polling day. Do not
                     destroy or throw
                     away your postal
                     ballot papers. You

Issue/question Answer                          Action

                     will need to return

For what            You can apply for a      Escalate to elections
period does my       specific time             office if they require
postal vote          period, or for a          more information.
last?                permanent one which
                     lasts until you
                     cancel it or move

How does the        This document will       If they wish, provide
postal voting        arrive in your            elections office
statement            postal vote pack          contact details.
work?                alongside your
                     ballot paper. It
                     must be completed
                     or your vote will
                     not count.

                    You will need to
                     provide your
                     signature and date
                     of birth. This will
                     be checked against
                     your original
                     application form.

                    More detailed
                     instructions will
                     be provided in your
                     postal ballot pack,
                     or you can contact
                     your local
                     elections office
                     for more
Why do I have       When you apply for       If they want to
to give my           a postal (or proxy)       discuss any aspect of
date of birth        vote you must             postal vote security
and signature?       provide your date         or who has their
How is it            of birth and              personal details
secret?              signature.                further, elevate to
                                               elections office.
                    When you get your
                     postal ballot paper
                     there will be a
                     separate statement

Issue/question Answer                          Action

                     on which you will
                     be asked for the
                     same details. This
                     is for security
                     reasons and the
                     details must match
                     those provided in
                     your application
                     for your vote to be

                    However, rest
                     assured that the
                     statement is
                     separated from the
                     ballot paper when
                     it is received.
                     This happens before
                     the sealed ballot
                     paper envelope is
                     opened and the vote
                     is counted. This
                     keeps your vote
                     secret; no one will
                     be able to find out
                     how you voted.
How secure is       It is an offence to      Refer on to elections
a postal vote?       complete a postal         office if they want to
/ Any question       vote that is not          debate this further.
or challenge         your own, and to
about the            intimidate voters.
security of          If you have any
voting.              allegations of
                     fraud, they should
                     be referred to the
                     police and/or the
                     elections office.

                    Special
                     arrangements have
                     been made with the
                     police to ensure
                     the security of the
                     election and

I opted for a       No problem. You can      If they wish, provide
postal vote          drop your ballot          elections office

Issue/question Answer                         Action

but I don’t         paper off on              contact details.
want to post        polling day at the
it/I’m too          elections office,
late to post        to your normal
it                  polling station, or
                    to a polling
                    station within your
                    constituency area.
                    Make sure you do it
                    before 10pm on 5

                   You cannot be given
                    another ballot
                    paper at the
                    polling station.

                   Contact your local
                    elections office to
                    find out where
                    their office is or
                    for the address of
                    your polling

Who can apply      To vote by proxy         They can download a
for a proxy         for the 5 May only,       form from
vote?               you must have a 
                    reason – e.g. you         or get one from the
                    will be away on           elections office.
                    holiday, but you
                    will not require an

                   Only those with a
                    specific reason
                    such as a
                    disability or being
                    overseas can apply
                    to vote by proxy
                    for a period of
                    time. Contact your
                    local elections
                    office for more
                    information and an
                    application form.

                   See below for

Issue/question Answer                          Action


What is the
deadline for        If you are amending      As above
applying for a       an existing proxy
proxy vote?          vote, you must
                     return your
                     application by 5pm
                     on 14 April.

                    New proxy
                     applications must
                     be received by 5pm
                     on 21 April.

                    You can apply to
                     vote by proxy for
                     emergency medical
                     reasons up until
                     5pm on 5 May.
I’ve been made      It’s simple to vote      If they want to
the proxy for        as someone’s proxy.       discuss this further,
someone and I        You will be sent a        refer them to the
don’t know how       special proxy poll        elections office.
it works             card with details
                     of where you should
                     go to vote.

                    If you can’t attend
                     the polling station
                     you can vote as a
                     proxy by post, but
                     you must apply by
                     5pm on 14 April.

                    If you are going to
                     the polling station
                     just tell the staff
                     there that you are
                     voting as a proxy
                     and they will tell
                     you what to do.

                    Don’t forget to
                     take your proxy
                     poll card – this
                     will speed up the
                     ballot paper

Issue/question Answer                       Action

                    issuing process.

4 How/where to vote
Issue/question   Answer                 Action

Date of           5 May 2011
election and

How do I find     Your poll card        If the caller requires
out where my     should tell you the    further information,
polling          location of your       provide contact details for
station is?      polling station.       the elections office.

                  Alternatively,
                 contact the
                 elections office.

                  There may have
                 been a review of all
                 the polling places
                 in your area, and
                 your polling station
                 may have been
                 changed as a result.
                 Contact the
                 elections office for
                 more info if you
                 have concerns.

Polling hours?    Polling hours are
                 between 7am – 10pm.

What forms of     Polling station
voting are
there?            Absent voting:        See above for information
                 - by post (no reason   on applying.
                 is needed)
                 - by proxy (need to
                 give particular
                 reason for one-off,
                 need to meet certain
                 criteria for a proxy
                 for a period of

Issue/question   Answer                 Action

How does the      At the referendum,    Elevate any more
count work?      ballot papers will     complicated queries to the
                 be sorted according    elections office.
                 to whether they are
                 marked ‘yes’ or
                  At the National
                 Assembly for Wales
                 election, ballot
                 papers will be
                 sorted into votes
                 for each candidate.
                  At the National
                 Assembly for Wales
                 regional election,
                 ballot papers will
                 be sorted into votes
                 for each individual
                 candidate or
                 political party.
                  The Counting
                 Officer is
                 responsible for
                 counting the
                 referendum ballot
                 papers and the
                 Returning Officer is
                 responsible for
                 counting the
                 constituency and
                 regional ballot
                  Once the Counting
                 Officer has a local
                 total for the
                 referendum it will
                 be sent to a central
                 collation point and
                 all totals added
                 together to form the
                 final result.
                  At the National
                 Assembly for Wales
                 election, the
                 Returning Officer

Issue/question   Answer                 Action

                 will declare the
                 constituency result
                 and give notice of
                 the regional result
                 for the constituency

How do I fill     Information will      Elevate any more
in the ballot    be provided by the     complicated queries to the
papers?          polling clerk at the   elections office.
                 polling station or,
                 if you opted to vote
                 by post, it will be
                 in your ballot pack.

My whole          This may not          If they wish, provide
block/street     necessarily mean       contact details. Use
haven’t had      that you cannot,uk or
their poll       vote.                  contact details you have
cards.                                  been given.
                  Check that you are
                 registered (see

                  Report it to the
                 elections office.

                  If you are
                 registered, you do
                 not need your poll
                 card to vote

5 Overseas voters
Issue/questi   Answer                  Action

Can British       At the referendum      Direct them to
citizens           British citizens; or
living             living abroad can       direct them to elections
abroad vote?       vote                    office for more
                  At the National
                   Assembly for           Direct to
                   Wales election or
                   British citizens        elections office for more
                   abroad cannot           information.

                  Service voters
                   and Crown
                   overseas can vote
                   in both the
                   election and
                   referendum (see
                   next section).

6 Service voters and
Crown Servants
Issue/question   Answer                   Action

I am in the       Service personnel       Provide contact details.
Armed Forces       and their spouses      More info at
(Army, Navy or     or civil partners
RAF) posted        posted abroad can
abroad. How do     register to vote        Service voter
I register to      through making a       registration form can be
vote?              service                downloaded from
                   declaration, which
                   is available to
                   download from the       Remind them of the 14
                   Commission’s           April deadline.
                   website, or we can
                   send you one if
                   you don’t have
                   access to the

                  You can register
                   at the address in
                   the UK where you
                   would be living if
                   not posted
                   overseas or at an
                   address where you
                   have lived in the

                  Service
                   declaration forms
                   should be sent to
                   the elections
                   office for the
                   area where you
                   wish to register.

I am in the         Service personnel     Supply contact details of
Armed Forces         and their spouses    elections office. More info
living in the        or civil partners    also available from
UK how do I          have the option of
register to          making a service
vote?                declaration as        Service voter
                     above, or can opt

Issue/question   Answer                   Action

                     to register to       registration form can be
                     vote in the          downloaded from
                     traditional way
                     (as described in
                     the registration      Offer to send a form if
                     section)             they can’t get one from the

                                           Remind them of the 14
                                          April registration

I am a Service      Service voters and    Refer to
voter, what          their spouses or
methods of           civil partners can   website where Service voter
voting are           vote in person or    forms can be downloaded
available to         can opt to vote by
me?                  post or proxy.        Remind them of the 5pm 14
                                          April deadline for receipt
                    Postal votes are     of postal vote applications
                     only sent out        and the 5pm 21 April
                     about a week         deadline for a new proxy
                     before polling       vote. If they already have
                     day. If you are      a proxy vote but want to
                     living abroad it     change it, they need to do
                     is advisable that    this by 5pm 14 April.
                     you appoint a
                     proxy to vote on
                     your behalf as
                     there is unlikely
                     to be enough time
                     for postal votes
                     to reach you and
                     be sent back
                     before close of

                    However, there is
                     a program that
                     aims to get postal
                     votes into certain
                     theatres of
                     Contact the
                     elections office
                     if you are
                     interested in

Issue/question   Answer                 Action

I work in a UK    If you are working    provide contact details
embassy / for      outside the UK as
the EU / for       a Crown Servant or    Crown servant voter
the UN, and am     as an employee of    registration form can be
based              the British          downloaded from
overseas. How      Council, you can
do I register      still register to
to vote?           vote. You can also    Remind them of the 14
                   register if you      April registration
                   are married to or    deadline.
                   are the civil
                   partner of a Crown
                   Servant or British
                   Council employee
                   and you are
                   accompanying them
                   during their
                   employment abroad.

                  You will need to
                   complete a Crown
                   registration form,
                   which is available
                   to download from
                   the Commission’s

I am a Crown      Crown Servant         Refer to
Servant, what      voters and their
methods of         spouses or civil     website where Crown Servant
voting are         partners can vote    voter forms can be
available to       in person or can     downloaded.
me?                opt to vote by
                   post or proxy.        Remind them of the 5pm 14
                                        April deadline for receipt
                  Postal votes are     of postal vote applications
                   only sent out        and the 5pm 21 April
                   about a week         deadline for a new proxy
                   before polling       vote. If they already have
                   day, if you are      a proxy vote but want to
                   living abroad it     change it, they need to do
                   is advisable that    this by 5pm 14 April.
                   you appoint a
                   proxy to vote on
                   your behalf as
                   there is unlikely

Issue/question   Answer                Action

                   to be enough time
                   for postal votes
                   to reach you and
                   be sent back
                   before close of

7 Access issues
Issue/question Answer                    Action

What provision         Local               If they wish, provide
is made for             authorities          contact details for the
people with             have to comply       elections office.
disabilities?           with the
                        Act and other
                        laws. See
                        details below.

What                   Tactile voting      If they wish, provide
provisions are          templates and        contact details for the
made for blind          large print          elections office.
or visually             versions of
impaired                ballot papers
voters?                 are available
                        at all polling

                       You can take a
                        companion with
                        you (close
                        relative or
                        qualified to
                        vote) to
                        assist you, or
                        ask the
                        officer at the
                        station for

What provision is      Ballot papers       Direct to the Commission’s
there for non-          cannot be            leaflet Easy-read guide to
English and non-        printed in           voting
Welsh speakers?         languages  
                        other than           ox-index/toolbox2/d-f/easy-
                        English and          read-guide-to-voting
                                            Registration and postal
                       However, there       voting leaflets are

Issue/question Answer                 Action

                     may be               available in a number of
                     guidance notes       different languages from
                     in other             the Electoral Commission.
                     languages.           They are only available to
                     These may be         order, so please ring the
                     available in         Commission on 0845 8500
                     the polling          501. A catalogue of all the
                     station.             materials available can be
                                          found at

What provision      Each polling        If they wish, provide
is there for         station is           contact details for the
wheelchair           different. You       elections office.
users?               can obtain
                     more details
                     from the
                     office, or
                     look for
                     details on
                     your poll

                    Alternatively,
                     you could
                     apply for a
                     postal vote,
                     to allow you
                     to vote from
                     home; or
                     nominate a
                     proxy to vote
                     on your

What about          I can give you      Provide contact details for
access issues        contact              the elections office.
for postal           details of the
voters?              elections
                     office, who
                     will be able
                     to discuss
                     this with you.

8 The election and
referendum in your area
Issue/question           Answer                             Action

What elections and          Elections to the                  If they wish,
referendums are              National Assembly                  provide elections
taking place on 5            for Wales are                      office/Electoral
May 2011?                    taking place across                Commission contact
                             Wales                              details.

                            A referendum is
                             taking place across
                             the UK

What is the referendum       It’s a referendum    If they require
about?                        on which of two       further information
                              voting systems        provide the
                              should be used to     Electoral Commission
                              elect MPs to the      contact details 0800
                              House of Commons in   3 280 280 or
                              the future. 

What are my options?         A referendum asks              If they require
                              you to vote yes or              further information
                              no to a proposal.               provide the
                                                              Electoral Commission
                             For this                        contact details 0800
                              referendum, the                 3 280 280 or
                              ballot paper asks     
                              this question:                  k.

                             ‘At present, the UK uses
                             the ‘first past the post’
                             system to elect MPs to the
                             House of Commons.
                             Should the ‘alternative
                             vote’ system be used

                             Voters have one vote and
                              should mark a cross (X)
                              in either the ‘Yes’ or ‘No’
                              box on the ballot paper.

Issue/question               Answer                    Action

What will happen if I vote      If more people       If they require
‘Yes’?                           across the UK vote    further information
                                 ‘Yes’ than ‘No’,      provide the
                                 the ‘alternative      Electoral Commission
                                 vote’ system will     contact details 0800
                                 be used to elect      3 280 280 or
                                 MPs to the House of
                                 Commons in future.    k.

What will happen if I vote      If more people       If they require
‘No’?                            across the UK vote    further information
                                 ‘No’ than ‘Yes’,      provide the
                                 the ‘first past the   Electoral Commission
                                 post’ system will     contact details 0800
                                 continue to be used   3 280 280 or
                                 to elect MPs to the
                                 House of Commons in   k.
                                 the future.

What is the ‘alternative        I’m afraid I’m not       Provide the
vote’ system/’the first          able to answer that       Electoral
past the post’ system?           question for you as       Commission contact
                                 I have to be              details 0800 3 280
                                 neutral and               280 or
                                The Electoral
                                 Commission will
                                 send you impartial
                                 information in a
                                 booklet to each

How can I find out the          The referendum           If they require
referendum result?               ballot papers will        further information
                                 be counted from 4pm       provide the
                                 on Friday 6 May.          Electoral
                                                           Commission contact
                                The final UK result       details 0800 3 280
                                 will be available         280 or
                                 on the Commission’s
                                 website at:               uk.

Who is standing in              Refer them to the      If they wish,
the election?                    elections office.       provide elections
                                                         office contact

Issue/question      Answer                    Action

                       News media websites     details.
                        may also be useful
Where can I get        You will need to       Provide local
information about       visit                 council website
the                     candidate/party       details.
candidates/parties?     websites. Most
                        post leaflets
                        through letter
                        boxes during
                        election time.

                       News media websites
                        and that of the
                        local council may
                        be useful.

9 Count, results, etc
Issue/question   Answer                 Action

When will the       The referendum            Give Electoral
results be           votes will be              Commission website
announced?           counted on the             and/or telephone
                     day after the              details
                     poll from 4pm    
                     and completed as           or 0800 3 280 280
                     soon as
                     possible.                 If they wish, provide
                                                contact details for the
                    The referendum             elections office.
                     result will be
                     shown on the

                    [insert details
                     of National
                     Assembly for
                     Wales election

                    The elections
                     office may also
                     have information
                     and results

What about          Any designated        If they wish, provide
recounts?            referendum or          contact details for the
                     counting agent         elections office. If you
                     can request a          do have the details go to
                     re-count at the
                     referendum on
                     certain grounds

                    Any candidate or
                     election agent
                     can request a
                     re-count at the
                     Assembly for
                     Wales election

    count on certain

   It is the
    of the Counting
    g Officer to
    decide if a re-
    count is

10 Referendum campaigners
and candidates at the
National Assembly for
Wales election
Issue/questi   Answer                   Action

What is a       Campaigners in            More complex queries
campaigner       referendums are            refer on to the
in a             defined by the law         Electoral Commission.
referendum?      as permitted               www.electoralcommission.
                                            or 0800 3 280 280
                These can be
                 individuals or
                 organisations that
                 campaign for a
                 particular outcome
                 in a referendum.

How do I        In certain
become a         circumstances
permitted        campaigners must
participant?     register with the
                 Electoral Commission
                 and then comply with
                 controls on their
                 spending and
                 donations under the
                 Political Parties,
                 Elections and
                 Referendums Act 2000

                An individual or
                 organisation may

                Refer to
                 guidance on
                 Electoral Commission


                If they have further
                 questions, refer to
                 the Electoral

How do I        To qualify as a           More complex queries,
stand as a       candidate at a             refer to the elections
candidate?       constituency or a          office.
                 regional election
                 you need to meet all
                 the qualifications
                 for being a
                 candidate and not be

                You will also need
                 to submit a set of
                 nomination papers to
                 the Returning

                Refer to candidates
                 guide on Electoral
                 Commission website

                If they have further
                 questions, refer to
                 elections office.

Where do I      Nomination papers         Provide contact details
get              are available from         of the elections office.
nomination       the Returning
papers from?     Officer or from the


When is         Close of nominations      Refer to elections
close of         for the National           office.
nominations?     Assembly for Wales
                 election is noon on
                 Monday 4 April 2011.

Any other                                  Refer to the elections
nomination                                  office.

11 The Electoral
Issue/questio   Answer                  Action
What is The      An independent           If they want further
Electoral         body, not part of         information, direct them
Commission?       government, whose         to,
                  aim is to increase        www.electoralcommission.o
                  public confidence
                  in the democratic         or 0800 3 280 280.
                  system and
                  knowledge of
                  elections and

                 For the referendum
                  it will also:
                  - comment on the
                    of the referendum
                  - register
                    organisations or
                    individuals who
                    want to campaign
                    in the referendum
                    (known as
                  - monitor and
                    report on
                    campaign spending
                  - appoint
                    organisations as
                    the lead
                    campaigners or
                    for each
                  - ensure that
                    organisations (if

  appointed) have
  access to certain
- report on the
  administration of
  the referendum

12 List of Commonwealth
countries, British
Overseas Territories and
European Union member
Commonwealth countries
Antigua and         Kenya                     Samoa
Australia           Kiribati                  Seychelles
The Bahamas         Lesotho                   Sierra Leone
Bangladesh          Malawi                    Singapore
Barbados            Malaysia                  Solomon Islands
Belize              Maldives                  South Africa
Botswana            Malta                     Sri Lanka
Brunel Darussalam   Mauritius                 Swaziland
Cameroon            Mozambique                United Republic of
Canada              Namibia                   Tonga
Cyprus              Nauru                     Trinidad and Tobago
Dominica            New Zealand               Tuvalu
Fiji Islands        Nigeria                   Uganda
The Gambia          Pakistan                  United Kingdom
Ghana               Papua New Guinea          Vanuatu
Grenada             Rwanda                    Zambia
Guyana              St. Kitts and Nevis       Zimbabwe
India               St Lucia
Jamaica             St Vincent & The

British Overseas Territories
Anguilla                         Montserrat
Bermuda                          Pitcairn Island
British Antarctic Territory      St Helena
British Indian Ocean             St Helena dependencies (Ascension
Territory                        Island, Tristan da Cunha)
British Virgin islands
Cayman Islands                   South Georgia and the South Islands

Falkland Islands             Turks and Caicos Islands

European Union member states
(note that citizens of
countries which do not have a *
cannot vote in the referendum)
Austria              Germany              The Netherlands
Belgium              Greece               Poland
Bulgaria             Hungary              Portugal
Cyprus *             Ireland *            Romania
Czech Republic       Italy                Slovakia
Denmark              Latvia               Slovenia
Estonia              Lithuania            Spain
Finland              Luxembourg           Sweden
France               Malta *              United Kingdom *

* Also Commonwealth countries or Ireland, citizens of which
can vote in all elections and referendums


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