Press Releases

LGIU Statement – One month until the locals

Dr Jonathan Carr-West, Chief Executive, LGIU said:

“At the LGIU, we always say local elections are the most important set of elections of all because they are the ones that make the most difference to the places where we live and work and to our experience of public services.

“That for us is an indisputable fact. But what the 2024 local elections starkly illustrate is that elections for local authorities are one part of the democratic continuum. Local context is always important but the local elections not only reflect a wider national narrative they also develop and add substance to that narrative.

“Local elections and general elections are connected and equal steps in the democratic process. What happens in May is not a support act to the general election, it is a chapter in our ever-evolving democracy and one that will influence the national election as much as the Westminster context will influence local outcomes.

“And whatever the result of the next general election – the councillors, mayors, assembly members and PCCs we elect in May will remain. They will make decisions, guided by local circumstances, to deliver the best for their communities

“Councils and councillors are vital to the wellbeing of local people and local areas, but it is often overlooked just how much our democracy depends on local government in one very practical way. All elections – local, national, referendums – are delivered by local government staff. And this essential service – perhaps the one on which all others depend – is overstretched and under-resourced. Our research last year found that running elections is becoming more stressful, that communicating election rules is becoming more difficult, and that running snap elections is a severe challenge, alongside long-running concerns amongst administrators about voter turnout. It is critical that in the year of elections, we appreciate and support the staff who work tirelessly to make elections happen, especially as a general election approaches.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

Ones to watch Our guide to the 2024 local elections across England with what’s at stake and up for grabs on 2 May.

Who runs the councils in No Overall Control? Who runs councils in No Overall Control across England and what does this mean in practice?

The Impact of Voter ID: The Views of Administrators The LGIU surveyed 171 electoral administrators who helped to deliver the May 2023 local elections, and ran detailed interviews with 11 more, ensuring diversity across regions and seniority. Together, these data comprise an original and systematic effort to collect the perspectives of electoral administrators and highlight the challenges they face in carrying out their vital democratic work.

The impact of Voter ID: FAQs Voter ID was required in the May 2023 local elections for the first time and everyone has questions about it. Dr Greg Stride answers some of the big ones for us.

Local elections support and resources Your one-stop shop for the most pertinent local elections resources for you and your teams.

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