THE ELECTIONS are fast approaching, and Ngage, a local community organsation, has been working in partnership with Thurrock Council to let local people know that their vote counts.
Jacqui Payne from ngage said: “Over the coming months, we will all be facing the prospect of elections – for new local councillors, a new MP for Thurrock, as well as a government for our country.
“The number of voters in Thurrock is low. We want to let people know why it is important to vote, and how easy it is for them to make their vote count.”
As part of the ‘Take Part’ pathfinder initiative, ngage will be hosting a number of election roadshows – not to canvas on behalf of the political parties – but to give residents the chance to find out more about how and why it is important to vote.
Wendy Mayo from ngage said: “Some people might think about voting, but never actually get around to doing it. Others might be unsure where their polling station is, or have difficulty getting there.
“Councillors are elected to act on your behalf and to ensure that you receive decent public services and a good quality of life. Every Thurrock resident, once properly registered, has the chance to choose their local representative – but in some areas, there has been less than 20% turnout.”
In the 2008 elections, West Thurrock, Grays Riverside, South Chafford and Tilbury St Chads all had under 30% voter turnout – therefore the people who were elected were done so by the minority and not the majority of residents.
Any residents who do not vote, or are not sure why it is important to vote, are being encouraged to come along to one of the election roadshows which are being held throughout the borough over the coming weeks:
Tuesday, 23 February: South Ockendon Market
Friday, 26 February: Grays Town Centre
Tuesday, 2 March: West Thurrock Health Centre
Friday, 5 March: Tilbury Market
ngage will be taking the roadshow to Palmers College, Thurrock Campus and Thurrock Learning Campus to talk to young people about the importance of voting and to try and increase registration amongst young people in Thurrock.
Residents will also have an opportunity to register to vote at any of the roadshows.