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Register to Vote

On Monday 16th January 2017, the Northern Ireland Secretary of State, James Brokenshire, called an election for Thursday 2nd March 2017. Details on how to vote, how to register, and the voting system in Northern Ireland are below.

Important Information:

  • Election Date - Thursday 2nd March 2017

  • Last Date to Register to Vote - Tuesday 14th February 2017, Valentine's Day

  • Voting System - Proportional Representation: Single Transferable Vote

  • More Information - Electoral Office in Northern Ireland website

Register to Vote

To register to vote, update your address or name - print off this form, complete and sign it, then return it to your Area Office. Please read the guidance notes before completing the form.

The registration form can also be used to apply for an Electoral Identity Card. Visit the Electoral Identity Card page for details of how to apply.

The deadline for registering to vote at the NI Assembly Election on 2nd March is Tuesday 14th February 2017.

Cannot Vote on 2nd March? Apply for a Proxy or Postal Vote.

How to apply

  1. Download the application form.

  2. Fill in the application and, if necessary, have the form attested (where another person confirms that the information provided is correct).

  3. Return the application form to your Area Electoral Office.

Reasons to Vote

  • Due to the voting system used in Northern Ireland, every vote counts and every vote has the potential to change an election.

  • Voting ensures politics is more representative with extreme and minor views having appropriate levels of input instead of disproportionately dictating decisions.

  • By not voting, government parties become less accountable and less responsible.

  • Voting is quick, easy and fun!

Information on Voting

At the polling station table:

  1. A member of the polling station staff will ask you to confirm your name and address.

  2. You will be asked to produce your photographic identification (see list above).

  3. They will issue the ballot paper to you.

  4. You should then go to the polling booth, mark your ballot paper, fold it to conceal your vote and insert it into the ballot box.

Proportional Representation: Single Transferable Vote

In the polling station, voters put numbers next to candidates in order of preference. To get elected, candidates need to reach a set share of the votes, determined by the number of positions to be filled.

Each voter gets one vote, which can transfer from their first-preference to their second-preference, so if your preferred candidate has no chance of being elected or has enough votes already, your vote is transferred to your second choice candidate in accordance with your instructions. Single Transferable Vote thus ensures that very few votes are wasted, unlike First Past the Post, where only a small number of votes actually contribute to the result. - Electoral Reform Society

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