Close to one-third of people aged under 25 but eligible to vote in the upcoming referendums aren’t registered to do so.
And if the findings of that Red/NYCI poll from last autumn apply pro rate to Galway, that would mean that up to 6,862 young people in the city and county—2,410 of them in the city alone—risk missing out on being able to vote.
Now the National Youth Council of Ireland has urged young people to make sure they have registered to vote in time for the upcoming referendums on May 22nd. The registration deadline is Tuesday next, May 5th.
“We know from our work with young people that the vast majority of them want to vote but are not aware they have to register to vote or only become aware after the deadline for inclusion in the supplementary register,” said NYCI Deputy Director James Doorley.
“This is particularly an issue for young people who turned 18 and became eligible to vote since the local and European elections in 2014.
“We know that some local authorities have undertaken campaigns in the media and through house to house visits to ensure as many young people as possible are registered. Likewise, many youth and community organisations have run registration drives to increase the number of young people on the electoral register since our poll last year,” he continued.
Any young person who is 18 years of age on or before the 22nd May is eligible to vote. If they are not currently registered, they can do so by downloading and filling in the RFA2 form at www.CheckTheRegister.ie.
This form must be brought to and stamped at a Garda Station where the applicant is required to bring ID and returned to the local authority before close of business next Tuesday.
“With the upcoming bank holiday weekend the latest day for posting the form is effectively tomorrow Friday. We strongly encourage young people to register and to to out and vote in the upcoming referendums.
“It is your democratic right and a great opportunity to have your say in shaping the future of this country,” concluded Mr Doorley.