Letters - Tuesday, September 14, 2021
Voting is our right - not a privilege
The Government’s Elections Bill, returning to Parliament next week, seeks to introduce a new law that will require everyone to show photo ID when voting in General Elections.
Is there a genuine need for this measure?
There are very few, if any, instances of ‘Personation’ particularly in mainland UK.
Genuine election fraud is very seldom seen in this country.
To adopt a policy of requiring people to show photo ID in order to vote will have the consequence of denying many poor and vulnerable people the opportunity of carrying out their democratic mandate – it needs to be stopped!
Many of the poorest and most vulnerable in our society don’t have a passport or driving licence – 3.5 million people currently don’t have photo IDs.
If voter IDs are introduced, the Government could end up disenfranchising millions of people, and a disproportionate number of them will be black, Asian and ethnic minority voters, who are statistically less likely to have a photo ID.
The proposed law will put extra obstacles in the way for voting, especially for people who lack the skills or funds to know about the new rules and get the necessary ID in time.
I have acted as an agent in two recent General Elections and numerous local elections.
I have never been aware of any election fraud or attempts at electoral dishonesty on behalf of the electorate.
The Joint Committee on Human Rights has scrutinised the Bill and they have reported that the Government must do more to prove that the Bill does not act as a deterrent to voting and impact marginalised groups.
Voting is our right – not a privilege. All plans of voter ID requirements at the polling booth should be scrapped immediately.
These guys are not Afghan refugees...
While not a labour supporter, I must congratulate Councillor Lynn Williams and her team, not forgetting our two MPs, who have no doubt been bombarding the Home office and other ministers for support.
The main players here, of course, are the Home Office and the main supplier of accommodation Serco, who have worked with Britannia on a number of occasions.
I remember vividly, staying in the South of England at a Britannia Hotel which, had partially been taken over by Serco, the swimming pool, had been taken over exclusively, by young men 25/35 years old, economic migrants, resting no doubt after their 26-mile swim. Don’t confuse these guys with refugees arriving from Afghanistan.
Lets do away with all the hypocrisy
The current furore over the government’s proposal to house 324 Calais migrants in the Metropole Hotel has provided us with a classic case study involving human psychology and hypocrisy.
It has been repeatedly claimed that this action would be wholly ‘inappropriate’. But where would be appropriate? I suspect the honest answer is anywhere save in my backyard. Nimby is a common attitude but one kept carefully under wraps.
Study after study by psychologists demonstrates that people love to publicise their professed sympathy for the suffering of refugees and other migrants, particularly those from a war zone, but balk at any suggestion that the solution to the problem lies in proximity to their backyard. Wouldn’t it be nice if just for once we admitted this and did away with the hypocrisy?
Dr Barry Clayton
Help us reach the world’s poorest
Today, more than two million children will eat Mary’s Meals in some of the world’s poorest countries every school day.
Providing a daily meal in a place of education is helping even the most vulnerable children to attend school and concentrate in lessons, giving them the freedom to learn and fulfil their potential.
Mary’s Meals began in 2002, by feeding 200 children in Malawi. Our growth since then has been driven by so many acts of kindness from people from all walks of life, helping us reach children in the greatest need.
We are deeply grateful to all our supporters and volunteers, including in Lancashire – we simply could not have reached this incredible milestone without you.
We hope your readers will join us in celebrating this amazing moment for Mary’s Meals and continue to support us to reach the next hungry child.
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