United Response launches campaign to engage people with learning disabilities in political process

    Charity United Response launched a three-year campaign today to improve political participation among people with learning disabilities.

    The campaign, funded by elections watchdog the Electoral Commission, is designed to improve voter registration among people with learning disabilities and help them have more of a say in the political decisions that affect them.

    The initiative, Every Vote Counts, comes less than a month after Community Care launched a campaign to improve the life chances of people with learning disabilities.

    United Response said there were no records on how many people with learning disabilities registered to vote but that a survey conducted after the 2001 election found 31% said they had voted, compared to a 59% overall turnout.

    The charity’s chief executive, Su Sayer, said: “Thousands of people with learning disabilities are missing out on their democratic right to vote because of a complete lack of accessible information being made available to them.”

    She said the campaign would begin by improving support for those who worked with people with learning disabilities on how to guide people through the voting process.

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