Derby City Council is set to take part in the next round of the 2019 Voter ID pilots along with 10 other local authorities across England.
The pilots will take place at the 2019 local elections, providing further insight to the Government into how best to secure the voting process.
Local authorities will help show what methods of ID work best for voters and provide alternative methods of ID to individuals who do not have a specified form of ID, free of charge, ensuring that everyone who is registered has the opportunity to vote.
At the last local elections in May, five local authorities took part in the first round of Voter ID pilots which are being run by the Cabinet Office.
The evaluation following the first trials showed they were a success, with the overwhelming majority of people able to cast their vote without a problem.
Returning Officer for Derby, Carole Mills said:
“We have been chosen to take part in the 2019 electoral integrity pilot scheme. This national scheme aims to cement public confidence in the election process by requiring voters at polling stations to produce ID when they vote at the local elections on 2 May 2019.
“Derby has a track record of working diligently to uphold the integrity of our election processes and protect voting rights. The democratic process depends on the good faith of those who engage in it. By taking part in this trial, Derby citizens are helping to build on that and test ways to prevent electoral fraud. The requirement to produce ID in polling stations may be rolled out for future elections.
“We are working closely with the Cabinet Office and currently looking at the outcome of previous pilots to determine which types of identification will need to be shown at polling stations. This will be communicated to voters well in advance of polling day.”
Minister for the Constitution, Chloe Smith MP said:
“I am pleased to see Derby taking part in the 2019 pilots. Their participation will help us gain a deeper understanding of how voter ID will work on a wider scale ahead of a national rollout, and see what works best for voters.
“We want people to have confidence that our elections are safeguarded against any threat or perception of electoral fraud.
“People are already required to show ID to pick up a parcel from the Post Office, rent a car, or apply for benefits and this is a common sense next step to securing the integrity of our elections.”
Director of Communications and Research for the Electoral Commission, Craig Westwood, said:
“Our key recommendation following the 2018 voter ID pilots was that any future pilots should include a wider range of local councils, taking in a mixture of rural and large urban areas and areas with different demographic profiles.
“We are pleased to see this reflected in the proposed list of authorities for 2019, to provide more detailed evidence about the impact of voter identification on different groups of people.”
“The Electoral Commission is responsible for carrying out an independent evaluation of the Cabinet Office’s pilot schemes. We will publish our findings following the May elections, in the summer of 2019.”
We are engaging with a broad range of charities and civil society organisations – including members of the Accessibility of Elections Working Group – to ensure that the overall policy reflects the needs of all voters in the UK.
To verify that voters are who they say they are, each local authority will test one of four models of Voter ID checks in their pilot:
- photo ID
- photo and non-photo ID
- traditional poll cards
- poll cards with scannable barcodes.
Voters in Derby will be asked to how show photo ID before they are given their ballot papers / will require voters to present either one form of photo ID or two forms of non-photo ID / will test using poll cards as a means of identification.