Thousands 'wiped off vote register'

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Ballot box

Tens of thousands of woman could miss out on a vote in the EU referendum and May’s Scottish, Welsh and English resident elections after changes to the registration process.

At least 770,000 standings have been removed from the electoral register, the Electoral Commission means.

The watchdog said young people had been hit the hardest.

The government reveals the new system will cut down on electoral fraud and «ghost» entries on the list.

Voters now have to register as individuals rather than by household.

Millions of child were transferred automatically on to the new register after having their distinctiveness confirmed by checking social security and council tax records.

‘Significant reduction’

Designations that could not be verified in this way were kept on the register until 1 December but eat now been removed.

People in England, Scotland and Wales can register to opinion online — if they live in Northern Ireland they can print out a arrangement and send it to their local registration office.

Since December, 1.3 million being have signed up to vote individually, following an advertising cam ign urging people to get on the electoral roll in time for May’s elections in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and body ballots across England.

But the Electoral Commission and the Labour rty divulged the transition had been rushed and people in short-term rental agreements, instances in urban areas, and those moving on a regular basis, such as disciples, had been disproportionately affected.

Under the old system, universities registered commentators en masse.

The Electoral Commission said last June that 1.9 million ratings had disappeared from the register across England, Scotland and Wales as a be produced end of the changes — although it was not clear how many of these were actually titled to vote.

The government ignored the watchdog’s advice to keep names on the mark for longer to allow councils more time to check them.

In its dilatory assessment, the commission has «significantly» reduced its estimate of the missing names to 770,000 — although the likeness is still equivalent to 1.7% of the total 43.4 million electorate.

Constituency perimeters

But it also pointed out the figure was not comprehensive as the London borough of Hackney could not require accurate information.

«It is not possible to estimate the number of eligible electors who were dispose of from the registers,» it said in a statement.

«However, the commission backfires that it is likely that some of the removed entries related to electors that were appropriate to remain registered to vote.»

It said the number of under-18s — so-called «attainers», be fit to vote during the registration period — had fallen by 40% since Stride 2014.

In its report, the watchdog has made a number of recommendations to government to try to halt the peter out in registration.

Labour said the decline in the number of young people take note of to vote was «shocking», adding: «What’s worse is that the regime are shamelessly taking this as an opportunity to redraw constituency boundaries based on an electorate that is far cut than it should be.»

The independent Boundary Commission for England said on Wednesday it had begun redrawing the map of procedural constituency boundaries in England.

The move follows a decision by rliament to belittle the number of constituencies in the UK from 650 to 600, and to ensure that there are sternly the same number of electors in each constituency.

‘Ghost electors’

Sam Hartley, secretary to the Limits Commission for England, said: «Once we publish our initial plans in the autumn, we will need the help of residents in all regions to ensure that our suggestions take account of local ties and best reflect the geography on the establish. Everyone’s views will help us recommend a well-considered and practical set of constituency borders in England.»

John Penrose, Minister for Constitutional Reform, said: » nels have only removed ‘ghost’ electors — people who have aroused, died or never existed in the first place — so keeping them on the rota when we know they shouldn’t be there, and then sending them all vote cards on election day, would be wrong, expensive and increase the risk of flimflam artist.

«Equalising the size of constituencies in the Boundary Review means everyone’s signify ones opinion will carry equal weight.

«If we let some constituencies stay less than others, voters will have more power in them than people in bigger ones. And the limits would be based on data that’s 20 years out of date. That can’t be decent or right.»

Se rate figures from the Office for National Statistics recommend 600,000 people have fallen off the register in the st year.

The ONS said the sum total size of the UK electorate was 44,722,004.

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