As you will have seen on Tuesday 18th of April, Prime Minister Theresa May called a snap general election for the 8th June, labeled by some as the Brexit election. Here at the SU we recognise this is not an ideal time for students to be able to engage with a general election so we wanted to let you know what we’ll be doing in light of the election to make life easier for you.
Register to Vote
Most importantly, here is everything you need to know about registering to vote.
Think about where you’ll be on the 8th June, in Bristol or elsewhere and register there. If in doubt then register at both places. Although students can not vote twice in a general election you can register at two addresses, so play it safe.
You may even want to consider applying for a postal vote, especially if you are on holiday or you wish to vote in Bristol but will be elsewhere on 8th June. Why might you want to vote in a particular place? If a seat is close between two or more political parties, you may wish to vote where your vote will have the biggest impact. (Bristol West and and Bristol North West are both often close competitions!)
The registration form will ask you for your National Insurance number which you should be able to find on payslips, P45s, previous employment paperwork.
If you were born outside of the UK then you still might be able to vote. See here for a flyer with more information.
Questioning MPs on Policy Affecting Students
The second thing we are going to do it to be asking candidates for the MPs of Bristol West and Bristol North West their views on the Higher Education Bill and fee increases, Brexit and the free movement of students and mental health support for young people. We’ll publish their answers in full so that you can easily digest their views on important policy for students even during this busy exam season.
Bristol West Hustings
The final thing we’re going to do in order to help you out is to host a hustings for all the candidates for Bristol West to come and talk to you about certain policy that you care about. This will be at 5:30pm for a 6pm start on the 24th May in the Winston Theatre, look out for the Facebook event for more details. We’ll live stream it too so you can watch from home as a study break. Tweet in questions or submit them prior and have your questions on their policy and views answered.
Finally stay up all night with us in the Balloon Bar on the 8th June to watch the results come in. A time to celebrate and commiserate with fellow students following the elections as well. More details to follow on Facebook and on the events section of our website.
The last thing from us is just to say that Bristol SU is a registered charity and will remain completely party neutral in the upcoming elections. If you want to get more involved then get in touch with our political societies: Conservative Association, Green Society, Labour Students, Lib-Dem Students. Or if there isn’t an affiliated society then get involved with a local group.