Ashley RouthIf you want to have your say in this May’s council elections, and in the next general election, then you’ll need to bring photo ID with you. This is due to a cynical move by the government designed to keep working-class people, young people, homeless people, and ethnic minorities away from the ballot box. Many people in these groups don’t have photo ID and may be unwilling or unable to spare the money to obtain them.

Voter impersonation is incredibly rare, with just one conviction in the 2017 general election. This is not a pressing issue, but rather a convenient cover story for the Conservative government to try to push away voters who are less likely to support them.

Why would the government do this? Voters over 70 are three times more likely to vote Conservative than young people. If you’re in any doubt about the government’s intent, you need only look to London Oyster cards. The 60+ Oyster card will be accepted as valid photo ID, but the virtually identical 18+ Oyster card, and Young Persons Railcards, will not be accepted.

A list of acceptable ID cards is here. You can apply for free photo ID by the April 25th deadline to vote in the council elections on May 4th. Register to vote by April 17th and apply for a postal vote by April 18th via

Don’t forget to bring your ID when you vote at a polling station from now on. Don’t let the Tories get away with this attack on your right to vote, which must be rolled back once they are voted out of office.

Ash Routh

Council election candidate, Walkley Green Party