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Referendum on Guernsey's voting system: make sure your voice is heard

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Monday 10 September 2018

In one month's time on 10th October, the public will vote on how to elect their Deputies to the States in Guernsey's first ever referendum.

The States has committed to introduce the electoral system which is the most favoured in the referendum, provided that turnout at the referendum is at least 40% of the people on the Electoral Roll who are eligible to vote. In the event that turnout is less than 40%, the matter will return to the States for a decision on whether or not to change the voting system.

Based on the current numbers inscribed on the Electoral Roll, this means that around 12,000 people will need to cast their vote in the referendum to ensure the public's most favoured option is introduced. Deputy de Sausmarez, Vice-President of the States' Assembly & Constitution Committee, said,

"The purpose of the referendum is to empower the people of Guernsey to determine their future electoral system. The States has given a commitment to introduce the voting system which is the most favoured in the referendum as long as voter turnout is at least 40%.

The only way to ensure the future voting system is chosen by the people of Guernsey is if enough people vote in the referendum.

If turnout is less than 40% there may be no clear direction from the public about whether the voting system should be changed. It will then be left to the States to take this decision, having reflected on the outcome of the referendum.

I strongly encourage everyone eligible to vote to have their voices heard on this important matter and vote on how they want their Deputies elected to the States."

People can vote in person on the Wednesday 10th October at any of the polling stations in the Electoral District in which they are registered to vote. Alternatively, people can register for a postal vote which enables them to vote when it is convenient for them before the day of the referendum. Applications for postal votes can be made online at https://registration.gov.gg/PV/ or by picking up a form from Sir Charles Frossard House, the Guille Allès Library or the various Constables' and Parish offices.

Deputy de Sausmarez said,

"We are pleased that we are seeing a steady increase of people opting to register for a postal vote, with applications rising from 100 to 500 within a single week. Two-thirds of applications have been submitted online. People have until the 4th October to register for a postal vote."

A leaflet has been delivered to every household in the island providing all the information voters need to know to take part in the referendum. It is also available to read online at www.gov.gg/referendum.

The video explaining how to vote in the referendum is available to view on the States of Guernsey YouTube channel, its Facebook and Twitter accounts and on www.gov.gg/referendum.

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