Project aims to find out why some don't vote

A project’s starting to try and ignite a conversation with people across Wales on voting, barriers to voting, and non-voters’ views on politics.

‘Missing voices’ will find out how people feel about politics in Wales and why so many people still don’t vote.

The project will use a variety of methods, such as an online surveys, online group chats, face to face focus groups, as well as getting out and talking to people on the street.

Wales’ leading pro-democracy organisation, Electoral Reform Society Cymru , has joined forces with the Electoral Commission, NUS Wales, Cymorth Cymru, Llamau, RNIB Cymru, ProMo-Cymru, Chwarae Teg, the Welsh Government, the National Assembly for Wales, WISERD, Citizens Advice, Open Government Network Wales and the Swansea Council for Voluntary Services on the project, which aims to talk to as many people as possible over the next few months. The findings of the project will be reported in the autumn.

It comes ahead of Wales receiving powers over elections in spring 2018 following the Wales Act’s passing earlier this year.

Jess Blair, ERS Cymru Director, said:

“We are in an age of fundamental change which will affect every single person in the country.

The recent General Election in June saw a three percent rise in turnout in Wales from 2015 and reports suggest that includes a significant peak for young voters. Yet despite this increase there are thousands of people in our society who have no voice on any major decisions that are being made on their lives and we need to find out why.

“The project will engage directly with people who sporadically vote or maybe have never voted before in their lives so that we can understand what needs to be done to make politics more relevant and more engaging. The information we collect will enable us to find a way to break down barriers that stop people voting and get thousands of missing voices in Wales heard.”

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