Voting age changes could be on the way to combat apathy

The government has wel-comed a review of the minimum voting age
by the Electoral Commission.

The commission has announced it is to consider whether 16 and 17
year olds should be able to vote.

Under current legislation you must be 18 to vote and 21 to stand
as a candidate in an election. A consultation paper will be
published this summer, and any recommendations for change are
timetabled for early next year.

A spokesperson for the Electoral Commission said: “The review
responds to a growing call from organisations to consider lowering
the voting age to promote participation in democracy and address
the real issue of young people feeling disconnected from the
political system.

“There are clear signs of public disengagement with the voting
progress, particularly among the youngest section of the
electorate. Fewer than four in ten 18-24 year olds were estimated
to have voted at the last general election dropping to just 11 per
cent at last year’s local elections in England.”

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