Changes to voting rights for EU Citizens

More changes have come into effect this week as part of the 2022 Elections Act.

From 7 May 2024 many EU Citizens will not be able to vote or stand in local elections in England.

These changes do not apply to:

  • EU citizens living in the UK before the end of the EU Withdrawal Agreement Implementation Period (up to 1 January 2021).
  • EU citizens from countries with reciprocal voting agreements with the UK can still vote and stand in local elections. Currently these nations are Spain, Portugal, Luxembourg, Poland and Denmark.

The changes also do not apply to local elections (or devolved elections) in Scotland and Wales. However they do apply to Police and Crime Commissioner elections in England and Wales.

Due to these changes new nomination papers have been created for local elections in England which reference the new qualifying criteria for EU citizens on form 1C. These need to be used for all local and parish elections in England from now on.

ALDC has shared a template Council Motion calling for EU citizen voting rights in local elections to be reinstated. You can find it here.

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