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2017/2018

A Million More Voices Campaign Pack


CONTINUING OUR WORK Last year, Labour Students across the country joined the A Million More Voices campaign. Our campaign resulted in thousands of students registering to vote across the country, which proved pivotal during this year’s General Election in winning a number of seats from Canterbury to Cardiff, Lincoln to Leeds. We worked closely with Cat Smith with the aim of putting a responsibility on education institutions to work on the electoral registration of their students. Together with Baroness Royal in the House of Lords we made this happen by tagging on an amendment to the Higher Education and Research Bill. Since then we have won integrated voter registration on campuses across the UK. After huge success in winning a number of seats at the General Election, Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn has promised that the Labour Party will remain in “permanent campaign mode”. Labour Students is committed to continuing to increase voter registration at institutions across the UK. The Conservatives are already trying to shut out students from voting in future elections, we cannot let this happen. We need to continue to ensure that student’s voices are heard loud and clear across the country. We want A Million More Voices to continue to be a practical campaign that you can easily roll out on your campus. We want to ensure students voices are heard by getting students on the electoral register in their thousands. This campaign pack will give you the information to play your part on your campus to help Labour prepare for the next General Election and win a Labour government!


THE NEXT STEPS OF THE CAMPAIGN  Support Labour Clubs with the resources to encourage students to register to vote throughout Fresher’s Week. Encourage Labour Students clubs to host events and voter registration drives throughout the year. Campaign on campuses up and down the country to get individual institutions to buy into automatic voter registration.

Labour Students with Cat Smith and other Labour MPs celebrating the change to the law on voter registration at academic institutions


HOW TO ENCOURAGE STUDENTS ON YOUR CAMPUS TO REGISTER TO VOTE 1. Freshers’ Week Encourage students to register to vote at your fresher’s stall. - You can use the Labour Party’s new voter registration leaflets on your freshers’ stall. - Have a laptop that students can use to register to vote online. - To attract as many people to sign up to vote, try not to have everyone sat behind your stall, not everyone will come to you so it’s important you hand out leaflets and start conversations with people.

2. Hold a voter registration event Raise awareness of your voter registration drive. - Think about inviting a Labour MP or Labour Councillor you have in your area to come and talk about the importance of having a strong student voice as well as getting students on the electoral register. - Hold this event sometime near the start of the first term before people get too busy with essays and exams. - You could work with other groups on campus to grow your campaign.


AUTOMATIC VOTER REGISTRATION : GET YOUR UNIVERSITY ON BOARD Automatic voter registration is a process in which universities give students the option to register to vote while at university. This can be done by integrating the option for students to opt in to be on the electoral register with online university enrolment. Labour MP for Sheffield Central, Paul Blomfield developed the idea with the University of Sheffield which has since been rolled out at institutions such as Sheffield, Sheffield Hallam, Leeds, Keele and more. Our aim is to make this list grows even more this year to ensure that students’ voices are heard.

4 Steps to Success 1. Planning your campaign - Get in touch with your National Officers to help you create a bespoke campaign plan to get a meeting with University senior management.

2. Contact your SU to ask for support - Get in touch with your Student’s Unions Sabbatical Officers and ask them what they could do to help, such as starting a cross campus petition. - When approaching SU Officers it may be worth thinking about their priorities and whether you campaign helps them fulfil any of their manifesto promises.


3. Pass a motion in your SU Proposing and passing a motion through your Union Council, Assembly or Senate can be a great way to galvanise support for your campaign and get key SU Officers on side. - Use this opportunity to get some coverage in your campus newspaper. Have a look in the resources section at the back of this pack for the motion Edinburgh Labour Students submitted to their Student Council. -

4. Write a letter to your Vice-Chancellor - Write to your Vice Chancellor asking them or the relevant Pro ViceChancellor from your university or college for a meeting. This may not be easy to achieve and you might want to consider tactics to get them to the table. If you ran a petition with your SU you may want to attach that to the letter. - If you have a local Labour MP, try to use them to broker a meeting or alternatively get one of your SU Officers to help. - If you are successful in securing a meeting with senior management, make sure you prepare! You can use resources in this pack to help, and remember your Labour Students National Officers are always on hand to give advice and support so get in touch! - Do some research, there may be a policy or commitment that your university has as part of its “strategic plan� that you could use to convince senior management to help with your plans.


WORKING WITH POLITICIANS Working with MPs We will be working closely with Cat Smith MP, the Shadow Secretary for Voter Engagement and Youth Affairs on the Million More Voices Campaign. You should try and meet with your MP to get their support for the campaign to add weight to your campaign. You can request they write a letter to your institution or ask if they will meet with your university senior management to push the issue.

Working with other Labour representatives in your area You should work closely with any Labour representatives you have in your area; it could be a Councillor or a regional representative. This will add legitimacy to your efforts. If you are in Wales or Scotland you may be able to work with you’re a Labour Assembly Member or Scottish Parliamentarian. The Scottish Parliament have already passed legislation to reduce the voting age for some elections to 16, so your local Scottish Parliament Member may be more willing to back a campaign for automatic voter registration at HE & FE institutions across Scotland. In Wales the Welsh Government has recently suggested lowering the voting age to 16 as part of a White Paper announced by Labour AM & Cabinet Secretary Mark Drakeford. With a Labour Government in Wales it may be worth talking to local AMs about supporting the Million More Voices campaign and automatic voter registration at institutions in Wales.


RESOURCES & SUPPORT Guidance from the Electoral Commission


Example of a motion for your Student Council


Example of a Campus Petition


CONTACT US FOR MORE SUPPORT Melantha - National Chair melantha_chittenden@labour.org.uk Josh – National Campaigns & Membership Officer joshua_james@labour.org.uk Rachel – National Secretary rachel_holland@labour.org.uk

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Guide to A Million More Voices  
Guide to A Million More Voices  
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