People who want to vote in Manchester local elections are being urged to ensure they can have their say on 4 May as the official countdown to this year’s local elections begins.
In total 33 of the council’s 96 seats are up for election – one in each of the city wards (representing a third of the council) plus an additional vacancy in Ardwick due to retirement of a councillor whose term had not yet expired.
The 2023 local elections will be the first to take place under new national legislation which means that anyone voting in a polling station will need to have approved photo ID with them.
Acceptable photo ID - which can be used even if it is out of date as long as the photo is still a good likeness of the elector - includes certain passports and driving licences (including provisional licences), a blue badge, some concessionary travel cards and national identity cards as well as Identity card with a PASS hologram. A full list of eligible photo ID can be found at www.electoralcommission.org.uk/voterID
Anyone who doesn’t have eligible photo ID can apply for a free Voter Authority Certificate (VAC) at www.gov.uk The deadline to apply for this certificate is 5pm on Tuesday 25 April.
Voters who need assistance to find out whether they need a Voter Authority Certificate, and help to apply if they do, can access support sessions at every library in the city. Visit www.manchester.gov.uk/voterIDsupport for more details.
People must already be registered to vote in order to apply. Anyone who is not already registered can do so at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote The deadline to be registered to vote to take part in this year’s local elections is Monday 17 April.
Photo ID is NOT required to vote by post. The deadline to register for a postal vote is 5pm on Tuesday 18 April. Details on how to apply for a postal vote can be found at www.manchester.gov.uk/elections
Joanne Roney OBE, Returning Officer for Manchester said: “These elections give people the chance to elect councillors to represent them locally.
“With changes to electoral law, this year’s elections will be different and we want to make sure people know they need to have eligible photo ID with them to be able to vote at polling stations and what to do if they don’t already have it. We don’t want anyone who wants to vote on 4 May to be disenfranchised which is why it is vital to spread this message.”