Posted on Tue 14 Apr 2015 at 12:51 by Gemma Turner
Last week I finally registered to vote.
It’s pretty strange for me to be talking about the General Election. This time last year I was so not politically engaged. I thought politics was just basically men in that Harry Potter like room on TV shouting at each other (I mean, it’s not far off some of the time, let’s be honest!). It was all very intimidating and to be honest I didn’t really understand half of the words the politicians said.
But this year I armed myself with a lot of questions and I went and talked to a lot of people – and I realised how we all have an opinion on things happening around us, it’s just harder to have an opinion when things just aren’t relatable.
Take, for example, ‘Save the NHS’. That’s a broad subject and seems so vague. However, when I asked what the issues around the NHS were, and someone explained that we may have to pay for hospital care, this became a relatable issue to me and my life.
It became a massive concern to me as I use the NHS on a regular basis and I am so grateful that we have it.
This month I’m explaining to people why I give an XXXX about voting.
I’m voting because even the process of voting has barriers for me (I’ve now opted to vote via post). A lot of my time in the day is working out the most accessible route to places or asking people to come with me just in case I have barriers along the way, such as wheelie bins in my way or steps in shops that mean I can’t get in. Accessibility is something I’m trying to raise awareness of to the people that can make a difference.
I want to make sure that real people are considered. We all have issues we’re passionate about and it’s about time we got our voices heard.
So if you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed by all this General Election stuff and don’t really have an opinion – take a look at the Parties’ manifestos, what relates to you and how would your life be effected if these policies were put in place?
Above all - remember you have a vote to make sure you have your say!
And before you are able to vote, you have to get registered, it only takes two mins, so join me in registering to vote here.
If you have any questions on voting access-wise please let me know – or tweet me @gem_turner and tell me why you give an XXXX #GiveAnX