Making your vote count

Houses of Parliament Outreach Officer Daniel Wood with course participants (left to right) Faith Starstedt, Tom Andrews and Paul Kinnersley.
Houses of Parliament Outreach Officer Daniel Wood with course participants (left to right) Faith Starstedt, Tom Andrews and Paul Kinnersley.

A WORKSHOP was held in the town as part of a campaign to increase the number of people with learning disabilities who vote and engage in politics.

All aspects of Parliament and the electoral system were covered at the event, which organisers say was well attended.

The Love Your Vote campaign is currently being run throughout the country by Dimensions in partnership with the Houses of Parliament Outreach Service, which supports people with learning disabilities and autism.

Steve Scown, chief executive for Dimensions, said: “It is essential for people to be engaged more with the electoral system – low turnouts among people we support are likely due to a lack of education on the subject rather than a lack of interest.

“Through this campaign, we want to ensure that people with learning disabilities and autism are provided with accessible information about their rights to make an informed choice about voting.”

The town event was held at the Centre for Independent Living, in Havelock Street, Hartlepool on Friday.

Those supported by Dimensions and the wider learning disability community were all invited to the event and teachers covered the topics using easy-read material and presentations.

Clare Cowan, head of public information and outreach at the Houses of Parliament Outreach Service, said: “It’s important that people understand the work and relevance of Parliament and how to make their voice heard about the issues which matter to them. Parliament Outreach has developed resources for helping adults with learning disabilities understand how Parliament works and we’re delighted to be involved with Dimensions in delivering this series of workshops engaging people with the Parliamentary process.”

For more information about the workshops visit www.dimensions-uk.org/loveyourvote.