Preparations underway for Covid-safe elections
Preparations are underway in Cambridgeshire to ensure that residents can have their say in a Covid-safe way at the May local elections
Following the announcement from the Government last month that elections will go ahead across the country on Thursday 6 May, Cambridgeshire County Council is working closely with the district and city councils as they are responsible for delivering the election on behalf of the county council.
It is very important that people eligible to vote do participate so that they can have their say on the 61 Councillors who make up Cambridgeshire County Council for the next four years and decide on the future of key services that everyone uses such as our roads, footpaths, registration services, libraries and disposal of household waste, as well as key areas which benefit the whole community like education, adult and children's social care.
The district and city councils are delivering the county council election alongside their own elections and those for the Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority and the Police and Crime Commissioner.
The district and city councils have confirmed that Covid-secure measures will be in place in every polling station in accordance with national guidance for those who would like to cast their vote in person on polling day. There is also the option to apply for a postal or proxy vote to make your vote count.
People who are keen to vote in person on Thursday 6 May will be asked to:
- wear a face covering
- bring their pen or pencil
- use hand sanitiser
- follow signs and use one-way systems, where these are in place
- observe social distancing; you may be required to queue outside until the numbers inside allow you to enter.
If you are unable to get to the polling station, or do not wish to attend in person, you can apply for a postal vote or a proxy vote. A proxy vote means that you can appoint someone you trust to vote on your behalf.
Those residents who would prefer to vote by post - particularly those who have been identified as clinically extremely vulnerable - are being urged to apply now if they have not already done so, as a higher than usual number of applications for postal votes are expected.
Registering for a postal vote is easy. You must be registered to vote first and then you can apply to vote by post for a particular election. The deadline to apply to vote by post at these elections is 5pm on Tuesday 20 April. To apply for a postal vote please contact your district or city council using the links in the table below.
The deadline for applying to vote by proxy is 5pm on Tuesday 27 April, although legislation has been introduced to support people affected by Covid-19 right up to polling day, by allowing them to apply for an emergency proxy vote up to 5pm on polling day itself.
To apply for a proxy vote please contact your district or city council using the details in the table below.
Sue Grace, Returning Officer for Cambridgeshire County Council, said: "In May we will still be living with some level of restrictions due to the pandemic. The district and city council election teams are working hard to make sure polling stations are Covid-safe for all the May elections. We understand that some people may prefer not to visit a polling station so I'd like to encourage those residents to apply for a postal or proxy vote.
"We are expecting a higher than usual number of applications to vote by post or proxy, so please don't leave it to the last minute to apply. You can apply now."
To find out more about this year's elections, go to our elections webpage.