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MNHQ here: petition to make it safer for victims of domestic abuse to register to vote

(48 Posts)
RowanMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 02-Jun-16 15:36:11

Hello

We've been contacted by someone who works for Nottingham Rape Crisis who wanted us to draw your attention to a petition. It's regarding the rules for getting on the electoral roll when leaving a domestic violence refuge for a new home.

As lots of you will know, when you register to vote you can opt out of having your details - your name and your full address - included on the 'edited' register (which gets sold to lots of commercial companies).

But for people at risk of violence or abuse, this may not be safeguard enough. The 'full' register, containing full names and addresses, is still made available to lots of agencies (see here for more details), and the argument runs that this poses too great a risk for people fleeing potentially life-threatening situations.

For those leaving shelters who wish to take up their democratic right to vote, the safest option is to go on the electoral register anonymously, meaning that your name is not included even on the 'full' register. At the moment the process for doing this is quite complex, meaning that many in this situation end up not registering at all.

The petition is asking the government to automatically offer anonymous registration to people leaving shelters.

We thought some of you might like to see this and offer your support - or indeed your thoughts, as ever.

The petition link is here.

Thanks
MNHQ

ProcrastinatorGeneral Thu 02-Jun-16 16:03:52

What a no-brainer. Signed and shared. I hope it's successful.

AnnieOnnieMouse Thu 02-Jun-16 16:14:20

signed

EveryoneElsie Thu 02-Jun-16 16:24:15

Signed. Its disgusting that anyone can buy that info.

DowntonIsMyHome Thu 02-Jun-16 16:39:48

signed. what an incredibly stupid system

Helennn Thu 02-Jun-16 18:09:10

Signed.

almondpudding Thu 02-Jun-16 19:23:29

Thanks for this, MNHQ.

TalkingintheDark Thu 02-Jun-16 23:11:56

Signed, thanks for flagging it up.

tipsytrifle Thu 02-Jun-16 23:34:50

Signed - thanks for the info!

thecatfromjapan Thu 02-Jun-16 23:43:57

Signed. I hope it's successful.

megletthesecond Thu 02-Jun-16 23:53:41

Signed.

Timetosay58 Fri 03-Jun-16 00:00:44

Signed

Upwiththisiwillnotput Fri 03-Jun-16 09:38:21

Signed.

TheWeeBabySeamus1 Fri 03-Jun-16 09:45:11

Signed

frostyfingers Fri 03-Jun-16 13:13:48

I did some work for our local council last year and had several "anonymous" voters on my list. I believe you can apply to be anonymous which means that no name appears on the register and you are able to vote anonymously.

I found this on the government website which explains it better, I certainly hope it includes victims of domestic abuse.
www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/501400/Register_anonymously_to_vote__living_in_England_and_Wales_.pdf

That doesn't mean I think a petition is unnecessary btw, I think it's a great idea but hope the above link helps too.

frostyfingers Fri 03-Jun-16 13:20:40

Sorry I've just realised that the anonymous part is mentioned in the post, that'll teach me to skip read.

5608Carrie Fri 03-Jun-16 13:36:48

I have a very close friend who was tracked down because the electoral office failed to keep her details of the full register. Their response was "oops sorry!"

She was very lucky not to be physically harmed

5608Carrie Fri 03-Jun-16 13:37:14

I have a very close friend who was tracked down because the electoral office failed to keep her details of the full register. Their response was "oops sorry!"

She was very lucky not to be physically harmed

IcaMorgan Fri 03-Jun-16 15:49:29

Signed

Threefaries Fri 03-Jun-16 16:46:21

Signed.

mummytime Fri 03-Jun-16 18:11:21

Signed

LurcioAgain Fri 03-Jun-16 20:02:06

Signed!

venusinscorpio Fri 03-Jun-16 22:35:51

Signed.

dailymailsdrugmule Fri 03-Jun-16 22:56:04

Signed.

For those who know about electoral registers- the full register that does have your details on is kept by libraries.

Is any member of the public able to access this register just by going into the library and having a look?

Ginkypig Sat 04-Jun-16 01:46:48

Hi I'm not sure if il ramble so sorry if I do! or if anyone can carry this idea forward but I wanted to add.

There are lots of people out there who have the exact same problem but due to childhood sexual abuse.
They are in hiding and feel they can't risk being registered to vote because the abusers (esp if it was a family member) are trying to track them down to either keep them under control so they are too scared to disclose or are looking for revenge after said child (now adult) has "told"
The difference is they most likely have not been in a refuge.

I feel it would make a great add on to this but have no idea if it's possible. Basically if anyone who's been abused could easily have their name added to the anonymous list.

I know of one person who did but it took her a lot of hoops and difficulty.

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