Election ballot box

The National Union of Students (NUS) has today launched its ‘Turn Up’ campaign to encourage students to register to vote in advance of May’s local elections. NUS has said the campaign will be the “biggest youth and student voter registration campaign ever”. The campaign is being run jointly with the British Youth Council and Generation Rent.

The drive comes as this year will see the first nation-wide elections in which voters will be required to provide photo ID. NUS says this is one of a number of barriers to students and young people voting, as student IDs and young person’s travel cards will not be accepted forms of identification at a polling stations.

The ‘Turn Up’ campaign will see NUS push for students to be registered en masse through university and college enrolment, provide students with access to free voter ID cards and empower student voters by ‘raising their voices and informing their choices’.

NUS has partnered with Citizen Card to offer students a free form of photo ID. Citizen Cards typically cost £15, but the arrangement with NUS will allow students to access them for free. A Citizen Card will be an accepted form of ID in the upcoming elections, alongside other forms such as British or EEA passports and photo driving licenses.

Speaking on the launch of the campaign, Bernie Savage, NUS Vice President for Further Education, said: “When politicians make decisions, they look at who is on the electoral register and who votes. This year photo ID presents a new barrier for young people and students to get their voices heard, but if they want to affect real change, then it’s vital they get involved, make sure they have valid ID, get themselves on the electoral register and turn up and vote!”

PS. We hope you enjoyed this article. Bright Green has got big plans for the future to publish many more articles like this. You can help make that happen. Please donate to Bright Green now.