Public warms to e-voting

27 Apr 2007 View Comments
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The young generation is more pro e-voting

With the UK local elections set to take place on 3 May, 46 per cent of citizens say that e-voting would make them more likely to vote, according to a study from ntl:Telewest Business.

The younger generation is more in favour of e-voting with 57 per cent of 18-34 year olds saying it would make them more likely to vote while only a third (36 per cent) of over 55’s agreed with them.

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This year, Whitehall has announced that 13 local authorities will trial alternative voting methods including internet voting, telephone voting and central polling stations for the electorate to vote from outside their local polling districts. This builds upon UK e-voting trials which have been happening since 2003.

'An estimated 10 million UK households use broadband to access the internet and there are an estimated 4,789 local libraries in the UK that offer free internet access,' said  Christopher Small, director of public sector affairs at ntl:Telewest Business.

'Local government is often a shining example of how to provide online services. Trialling this tactic at a local government level should pave the way for e-voting in general elections, where voter turnout is also on the decrease.'

The research also shows that British people want more interaction with their local council on other key services such as recycling and council tax payments, although almost 40 per cent of those questioned have no idea whether their local council already provides online access to these services.

'Council’s have invested significant resources into building online services over time. Local government simply needs to do more to educate people on what’s already available today. They also need to continue to invest in technology to improve and add to online services,' said Small.

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